After doing lots of visualisation exercises I came to the following reasoning:
If you can't solve a problem while looking at the board and moving the pieces around with your hand, you certainly aren't going to solve it with with your eyes closed before your mind's eye only. So the best you can hope for as result of visualisation exercises is that it is as if you are looking at the board with your eyes open. But it doesn't shift your boundaries as problemsolver.
There is more to it though.
Yesterday I introcuded the 3 layers of chess vision:
- 1. The squares covered by my present pieces (part of the present cage)
- 2. The squares covered by a piece of me in the future (part of the future cage)
- 3. The squares covered by the enemy (limits the places where I can put my pieces hence my ability to create the future cage)
White to move
This is a problem of masterlevel. You can't say that it is a very difficult problem though. The goal is this: mate the king. And every move is a check.
The tree of analysis isn't very big at all.
The problem is purely caused by the visualisation of the squares and the volatility of the memory. I now see a flaw in the reasoning that working on visualization can only have very limited results: even if you allow yourself to move the pieces by hand, you still have to visualize the cage. Otherwise you are going nowhere. Moving the pieces by hand relieves your problem to see the future cage, but you still have the visualise the current cage.
So the question is, again, how can we ease the task of the short term memory which is overloaded by coping with all those invisible squares?
I know the theoretical answer on this: make chunks and store them in your long term memory.
But the question is: how to make that practical? Or in other words: solve the diagram above and ask yourself "what must I learn to relieve this task and how must I train it?"