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How to Get Better at Chess [14 Proven Methods]

Every chess player tries to become better at chess at all levels, whether you are a beginner or an expert you must struggle or work hard for improving at chess.

There are many ways to get better at chess but I will describe 14 proven methods which will work on all levels. Try these methods and improve your chess quickly.

let’s start.

1. Study the Basics

Every chess master was once a beginner at chess and without the basics of chess, you can not improve. The basics dose does not mean how to move their chess pieces, instead, basics mean you should know the strategy of a chess game because both players have the same power, it means you should outplay your opponent by developing good strategy than your opponent.

For example, the basics of chess opening are to control the center, develop your pieces, get a castle and provide shelter to your king.

In conclusion, you should study the basic of the opening, middle game, and endgame.

2. Learn Popular Chess Openings

There are many chess openings, and choosing the best opening for yourself is one of the main tasks.

In order to select the best chess opening for yourself you may get help from a chess coach, or a professional chess friend who is better than you at chess or you may follow the wind.

What I mean is that playing the popular chess openings will be an easy option for you because all the information will be available for free on the Internet.

Here are some popular chess openings which you can learn and play, they are solid openings and tested by super chess engines.

1. Italian Game

Italian Game

2. Ruy Lopez

Ruy Lopez

3. Sicilian Defense

Sicilian Defense

(checkout 23 variations of Sicilian Defense:

4. Nimzo Indian Defense

Nimzo Indian Defense

For a further list of all the popular chess openings, you may visit my guide on how to select the best chess openings at:

3. Learn Middle Game Plans

You can not win a chess game without learning a middle game of your chess openings. Even if you play the strongest chess moves in the opening phase, you may get the advantage in material like a pawn or sth but it’s not guaranteed that you will win the game if you don’t know the middle game plan.

For example, in Queen’s Gambit Declined there are two plans for white, one is to go for the minority attack and the second is to play in the center.

Here is the picture of the minority attack in QGD:

Minority Attack

In the above picture, the white player started a minority attack, this is the standard position of QGD exchange variation.

Now in the minority attack, white will push his queenside pawns and White will create a weakness on the c6 square.

Like the above example, there are plans for every chess opening and in order to master middle-game skills, you must know those plans which are attached to your chess openings.

4. Learn Endgame

As without learning the opening and middlegame, you can not win the chess game, the same rule applies in the endgame.

You may get an advantage from the opening to middlegame but if you do not know how to convert it into a winning endgame you will lose the game.

Learning an endgame is one of the main differences between club players and the titled player.

In the endgame, you must know simple king and pawn endgame, minor pieces endgame, opposite bishops, the same color bishops, and the rook endgame.

Lucena Position (White Wins)

Lucena position

Lucena’s position in Rook Endgame

This is the winning position in the endgame, like this example there are many positions that you can win by just looking at even you don’t need to calculate.

In conclusion, you must study the endgame which includes, minor pieces, opposite color bishop, and rook endgames.

5. Learn Checkmating Patterns

If you don’t know how to checkmate a lonely king with a knight and bishop then you must learn checkmating patterns.

There are many checkmating patterns that you must be aware of. Here are some of the famous checkmating patterns with pictures.

1. Fool’s Mate

fool's mate

2. Scholar’s Mate

Scholar's mate

3. Arabian Mate

Arabian Mate

4. Anastasia’s Mate

Anastasia mate

5. Boden’s Mate

Boden's mate

6. Solve Chess Puzzles

Solving chess puzzles is extremely important in chess, solving chess puzzles also helps to avoid blunders. There are many themes in chess puzzles. In order to improve tactical vision, you must master these tactical motifs.

Here is a list of some of the motifs/patterns that you must be aware of.

1. Pin

A piece is pinned when it is unable to move because it is protecting a more valuable piece that would be exposed if it were to move.

2. Fork

A fork is a tactic in which one piece attacks two or more pieces at the same time.

3. Skewer

A skewer is a tactic that forces a more valuable piece to move so that a less valuable piece can be captured.

4. Double attack

A double attack is a tactic in which a single piece attacks two different pieces at the same time.

5. Discovered attack

A discovered attack is a tactic in which a piece is moved to reveal an attack by another piece.

6. Deflection

Deflection is a tactic that redirects the defending piece away from its defensive duty.

7. Zwischenzug (in-between move)

An in-between move is a move played in between a sequence of expected moves, often disrupting the opponent’s plans.

8. Decoy

A decoy is a tactic that lures an opponent’s piece to a less desirable square or position.

9. Trapped piece

A trapped piece is a piece that has no escape squares and is threatened with capture.

10. Back rank checkmate

A back-rank checkmate is a tactic in which a player delivers a checkmate by moving a piece to attack the opponent’s king on its back rank.

In conclusion, you can find these motifs on the internet, there are many sites where you can solve these puzzles, I would like to recommend because it’s free, and if you have paid membership on then it’s better to go with

7. Analyze Every Chess Game

Please make sure that you must analyze your every chess game because analyzing your chess games is a crucial part of improving in chess and it also helps to see missed tactical shots like mate in 3, 4, etc.

Once Garry Kasparov said that I analyze my all chess games whether I lose or I win. That’s the importance of analyzing chess games.

So after reading this, you should analyze your chess game whether you play online or on the board and if you analyze regularly, I can guarantee you that it will impact your chess you will improve quickly.

8. Play Chess Games Regularly

It’s serious advice that you should play chess regularly, taking breaks is ok but if there is a long gap then it can break your chess.

When you play chess regularly, your focus becomes stronger, and your tactical strength increases, and you will learn something new in every chess game, and you will also get the benefits of strong memory, like when you learn a new chess opening or variation.

In conclusion, you must play chess games regularly especially on the board, if you do not have time for going to a chess club then you can play online but playing on the board is more beneficial.

9. Play against Stronger Opponents

It’s one of the oldest and proven ways that in every sport when you play against your opponent who is stronger than you, you learn a lot from it.

When you play against a stronger player, you may learn how he has prepared his chess openings and how he refuted your chess opening.

You will also learn his plans in the opening and in the next game you may use his plan :). And at the end of the chess game, you may ask about your mistakes that lead to loss.

In conclusion, there are many benefits which you will get when you play with stronger opponents.

10. Watch Analysis of Top Chess Games

These days, we have one of the biggest advantages for learning things in the world, the advantage is the Internet and Youtube.

You can browse at or for watching top chess games, there are many grandmasters who analyze the top chess game on their channels/websites for free.

What will you learn in the analysis of the chess game? you will learn how to develop your chess pieces at the correct place, what is the advantage of playing some openings, and what strategy is used in the game.

In conclusion, watching the analysis of chess games is very important, and it’s one of the factors for getting better at chess.

11. Focus on One Thing

It’s human nature that we love multi-tasking but in today’s era with the help of modern science we get the conclusion that you can not deliver your best at multitasking but you can deliver your best on one thing at a time.

The same rule applies in chess, you should not start learning opening, middlegame, endgame, tactics all things in a row but you should select the area/subject in which you need to improve one by one.

It’s a proven technique that if you want to automate your brain on sth, you have to do it regularly for 21 days.

The same applies here, you should start focusing on one subject for 21 days. Like if you want to learn about a new opening then you should only learn about the opening for 21 days.

In conclusion, you can learn theory, watch games of top chess players in your opening, learning plans, you will do everything related to your chess opening for 21 days.

12. Play different Time Controls

If you want to make progress and want to develop your chess thinking then standard time control is best for you. And if you want to learn new openings and want to practice then blitz time control is better.

Switching to short-time control will increase your tactical ability and to make quick plans in a short time, and this practice will help you to cover time pressure in real big chess tournaments.

In conclusion, playing blitz and bullet will sharpen your tactical strength and plan-making skills, but don’t play too much blitz game as it may ruin your long-term planning which you have to make in real tournaments.

13. Attend Local Tournaments

Nowadays every chess player joins an online chess tournament or plays online games but in order to make quick progress you should join and attend local chess tournaments on a board.

Attending tournaments will teach you a lot of things like handling crowd pressure, the psychological effect of the opponent, and many things which you learn in real tournaments which you can not learn by playing online chess.

In conclusion, you must try to attend local tournaments and play on the real board as much as you can.

14. Hire a coach and Save Time

Hiring a chess coach will be costly but believe me if you really want to play professional chess then hiring a chess coach is the most beneficial and proven method for getting better at chess.

Here are some benefits you may get when you hire a chess coach.

  1. You get personalized training, which means your coach will analyze your chess game will sort out your mistakes, and will help you cover those mistakes quickly.
  2. You will save a lot of time, which means your coach will help you to learn the opening proper way and you will get his experience which will save you a lot of time.
  3. Your coach will also help you to prepare for tournaments, like which opening to play at the tournament and which opening you should play against a known opponent.

In conclusion, in every sport, you see a coach which helps from his experience which you can not get in anywhere in the world. So if you want to make real quick progress and if you can afford to hire a coach, then it’s the most proven method for getting better at chess.


In conclusion of getting better at chess, these 14 methods have been proven to progress, you can use these methods for getting better at chess.

My favorite method for improving at chess is hiring a chess coach because a chess coach has the experience and he can tell us our mistakes and show us how to fix them quickly.

If you have any questions about it, you may ask in the comments below.

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