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Saturday, October 31, 2015

Tired of Bad Positions?

    There's nothing earth shaking or even particularly interesting about this post, but I can't resist showing this snapshot from Artur Yusupov's Website. Excerpts from his courses can be seen HERE.  I looked at some of the excerpts which can be downloaded in pdf format and there are over 100 of them, so if you just want to browse it's a good way to kill some time plus there are some snippets of information and some nicely annotated games.
      One reviewer commented, “I can't believe a 1500 player will get much out of them. I think 1700-1800 is a good starting range. Doing all 9 books means solving more than 2700 tough exercises spread out over all the subjects that chess study involves.” That sounds a little harsh because there are courses for under 1500 rated players.  But, it's hard for me to say because, to tell the truth, I am not sure exactly how good under 1500 players are these days.  Back when I played in tournaments, they dropped pieces like flies, for example.  As usual, I am guessing there is a lot of hype associated with the courses. There are 3 books for 3 levels of play:

Under 1500 (Orange cover books) The Fundamentals, Build Up Your Chess, Boost Your Chess, Chess Evolution
1500-1800 (Blue cover books) Beyond the Basics, Build Up Your Chess, Boost Your Chess, Chess Evolution
1800-2100 (Green cover books) Mastery, Build Up Your Chess, Boost Your Chess, Chess Evolution

      The rating guide given is for the level you are currently at and the books cover all areas: positional elements, openings, endgames, how to calculate, how to attack, etc.
      What I thought was interesting was the phrase, “Tired of bad positions? Play the main lines.” This is the same advice GM Alex Yermolinsky gives. Makes me wonder about all the opening books titled “Win With the (insert with the name of some crappy gambit).”
     Another thing is Yusupov insists that you should play through the examples on a real on board. I think this is good advice because you will probably retain a lot more. 
     Don't bother to buy his books, or any instructional book for that matter, unless you intend to really study it. The books cost about 30 Euros ($33 US) each, so a three book course at each level cost will be $100. Because I am not interested in improving these days (you have to know your limitations) the only books I buy are game collections because they are fun to pay through.

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