Chess Theory is showing the players how the game should be played in the different phases of the game.
Chess Theory can be divided in:
- Chess Opening Theory
- Chess Middlegame Theory ( Chess Strategy and Chess Tactics )
- Chess Endgame Theory
Here at Chessfriend.com we are presenting the results of current Chess Theory and we try with our readers to add something to it.
The French Defence section at Chessfriend.com is an example for Chess Opening Theory.
There are different approaches how to present Chess Opening Theory:
- Encyclopedia ( All theory is presented in tables, normally no verbal explanations )
- Monograph ( An opening system or even only one or several opening lines are presented in one book )
- Repertoire ( A white or black opening repertoire is the content of one book )
- Model Games ( An opening system / line is explained with model games from strong players )
- Starter Package ( The basic ideas and main lines are explained in an easy to understand approach )
We use a mix of all these possibilities, as we have unlimited space to do so.
The Chess Middlegame Theory is presented in our sections
Chess Strategy is about how to evaluate positions and the plan how to convert an advantage long-term in a win or how to keep the balance and draw the game.
Typical examples are pawn structures, bishop vs. knight positions with bad bishops, the mobility and coordination of the pieces, attack constellations, defence ideas, etc.
Chess Tactics show you how to win a position within several moves by mating the enemy king or getting a huge material advantage.
Examples of tactical motifs are pins, back rank problems, sacrifices, fortresses, stalemate ideas, etc.
Chess Endgame Theory teaches us, how to treat endgames. Endgames are the game phase were only a few pieces and pawns are remaining. Endgames with 5 pieces, 6 pieces and most of the 7 pieces are completely solved by computer analysis and available in endgame databases.
The problem for human players is, that in practical games you don't have the databases available. You must play on your own,
Therefore you have to learn how to play endgames. So will win or save many points in practical games, because very often your opponents won't have this knowledge.
At Chessfriend.com we will concentrate on rook endgames. Typically rook and pawn(s) vs. rook and pawn(s).
( example from a game Hecht,H-J - Lange,H-L Mahlow (ch) 1954 - White to move)
Our other sites will present all the other endgames, like for example pawn endgames, queen endgames, knight endgames, bishop endgames and all mixed endgames.
Studying current Chess Theory will improve your game and results. Concentrating only on your Chess Openings won't show great results. Because you will get good positions and then you won't know what to do and lose against better prepared players. Ideal is to start with the basic endgames, in case that you have problems there. Then start with the basics of your openings and learn the ideas behind them.
Then study as many tactical problems as possible. The tactical exercises have to continue at all stages of your training. This will improve your results a lot as in amateur games most games are decided by tactical blows or tactical blunders.
After some time of practicing you should then read all the great books about Chess Strategy.
After that improve your openings and exercise as many endgames as possible.
Practice and Theory must work together in your Chess Education. In my opinion any player who is willing to learn can reach about ELO 2000 within 1 - 2 years training.
And always play as many serious games against strong players as possible. Because you won't learn much when you win easily against weaker opponents.
The next steps up to 2400 are then much harder. Above that you need to be very talented and you have to treat chess almost as a business.
But the most important thing: It is fun at all stages when you study it right. And it improves your thinking in other situations in life.