Reflections upon 7 months of Tactical Training (Part1)
Although I find this training beneficial, this is taking an awful long time......
Some of my errors are due to my not fully calculating my variation all the way through. I have tried to cut some corners and play somewhat intuitively and quickly.
This does not work very well. It's been a chess lesson on the importance of fully grasping the structure of each position. I seem to have a positional blindness where I discount the role of pawns on the 6th & 7th rank as well as often don't see a rook on H1.
One thing that worked for me as I did the circles was to do remedial circles of wrong problems. In fact, I found it helpful on some circles to F3 then F4 reseting the problem which I had just made a mistake on. This screws up the scoring but I think there is a benefit to quickly doing the problem correctly once you are shown the correct answer. (building some muscle memory). I'm trying to overcome the memory of the first incorrect move so I will not repeat it. In one circle I repeated these correct moves 10 times to try to overcome my initial faulty thinking.
Certain type of problems are easier for me: the knight forks, the boden/bishop mates, mates which involve a series of rook sacs from the 1 file to the 8th file ending in a mating net using the queen. These I spot and do quickly. The problems I initially found more dificult are those that aren't mating nets :Forcing Stalemates, Pawn Promotion, Capturing pieces due to space restrictions,Deflection Sacrifices. These solutions didn't initially popout for me.
One of the drawbacks of my circle training is that I am at times overly aggressive. I attack where the position does not warrant it. I then find myself in situations where my opponents simplifies the position and I lose in the endgame. I am not against sacrificing and playing moves that I can not fully calculate through if I feel that I will learn something and has a chance of succeeding. I believe at one time, Mr Nezh held this same spirit in his games. I think over time these problems will naturally straighten out as I progress.
Also the subject matter of CT-ART 3 is somewhat of a strech for me. I see ads recommending it for players 1600 and above. I'm fluctuating between 1400-1500 on playchess. I am a little below the rating where De La Maza started. So I need to have a patience with having to do more circles to get to a reasonable result.
I plan to continue to do CT-ART level 3 but am unsure how far I will go with the program. I am optimistically predicting that it will take less than 14 circles for me to hit 95% on Level 3 8). I also plan to do a flashcard series of simpler problems. I got a hold of Blokhs older book "art of combinational motifs" from interlibrary loan and copied all the 5X5 square problems. Some of these are the problems that pop up in Ct-art after you made your first mistake. These I hope will give me a stronger grasp of the problem underneath the problem. I wish that Ct-Art should have a level 5 which just consists of these problems. Perhaps CT-ART 4? (please note that Blokhs latest book:Combinational Motifs has no 5X5 problems)
I hope to have a part 2 on this post later: