Friday, May 23, 2008

Discipline powered low level drills

The program of Mike Anderson is the best way by far to do the concentric circles. It helps to see a double attack or a skewer within no time (1.7 seconds/5 days). I get more and more convinced that being able to do these simple elementary tasks at lightning speed is the root of more complex skills. Just as Troyis was an ideal program to learn to move the knight in a limited space.

The main concern of this kind of programs is: is the learned skill important, fruitfull and sufficiently common. In the case of the concentric circles it is, in the case of Troyis it isn't.

Maurice Ashley has made a CD with a lot of this kind of exercises (Maurice Ashley teaches chess). Those exercises are excellent for novices. For more seasoned players those exercises don't meet our major concern though.

I found out that with a little discipline it is possible to transform those too simple exercises. Take for instance the following escape exercise. You have to move the white knight while the computer chases you with the black pieces. In general there is always at least one way to go.

White to move and escape.

In itself it is a simple exercise for novices. But I add the discipline to look at every square where the knight can go before I move. In that way it becomes a knight sight exercise a la DLM.

It kills two birds with one stone:
  • the exercise meets our concern for frequency and effectiveness
  • the program supplies a sufficient amount of exercises in a short time, so that you can develop a habit within days. Just like Troyis and the program of Mike Anderson.
This way I hope to improve my knight sight, since the standard method of DLM with a board and pieces is so boring and time consuming that it is too difficult for me to develop a habit.


  1. Hi Im here visiting your site..Its great to be here..
    I have my blog too..

  2. LOL. These are the kind of pictures that have that strange mixture of disgust and humor. Usually the more often I see a picture the less attention it gets. But with this one, as with the goat lately, it's the other way around.