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  1. Subscriber Paul Leggett
    Chess Librarian
    23 Apr '10 20:17
    I thought I would share this personal anecdote just in case anyone was interested or curious.

    This last January I competed in the Florida Class Championship and won my section. I happen to work with a lady who is a Master Hypnotist (she's now retired, and works for Disney part time, for fun mostly).

    I was curious, so I asked her if she thought hypnosis could help my chess, as I really wanted to win my section. Her response was very interesting. She said:

    *All hypnosis is self-hypnosis; some one may act as an aid, but you can only be hypnotized by yourself.

    *It is not so much a TV-style trance state as it is a clearing of the mind and focus.

    She paused, and then said "I don't know much about chess, but try this: instead of looking three moves ahead, only look two."

    I took her advice, and concentrated on looking two moves ahead very accurately. The result was very interesting. I went 4.5/5 and tied for first, and in 3 of my 5 games, I won major material in less than 20 moves.

    The funny thing was that, in each game, I won the material with two move combinations, but they weren't "obvious", in that I had to show my friends the combos, even though they weren't deep. Basically, I learned that people hang material all the time, and I wasn't looking hard enough.

    As an aside, one of my friends remarked that I "played like Fritz", but I don't know if there is a connection there.

    I'm curious to know if anyone else has any experience, or any thoughts at all positive or negative.

    Paul
  2. Standard member nimzo5
    Ronin
    23 Apr '10 21:15
    It's often suggested that if you can accurately assess the next 2 ply you will be about 1800.
  3. 23 Apr '10 21:23
    Interesting.

    The two move trick, usually based around unprotected pieces is the
    root for all non-mating combinations. That is a fact.

    Master the two move trick and you are on your way to becoming a good player.

    I have also noticed from the many tournaments I have reported on that
    the stronger players tend to isolate themselves 10-15 minutes before the round
    to put themselves into 'The Zone'.

    The 'not so strong' players are often fooling around with their pals right
    up until the game starts.

    This is form self hypnosis and most (all?) strong players have a pre-game ritual.

    I noticed that my league results when I was team captain suffered and I put
    this down to the fact I could not prepare myself before a game as did when I was not a captain.

    The filling out of team sheets, worrying about missing/late players, talking to
    the opposing captain affected my play.

    Mind you, this could have been 'anti-self hypnosis' in as much that I had
    convinved myself that being a team captain would affect my play so I
    would start in the wrong frame of mind with a ready made excuse for not winning.
  4. Subscriber Paul Leggett
    Chess Librarian
    23 Apr '10 21:36
    Originally posted by greenpawn34
    Interesting.

    The two move trick, usually based around unprotected pieces is the
    root for all non-mating combinations. That is a fact.

    Master the two move trick and you are on your way to becoming a good player.

    I have also noticed from the many tournaments I have reported on that
    the stronger players tend to isolate themselves 10-15 minutes b ...[text shortened]... lay so I
    would start in the wrong frame of mind with a ready made excuse for not winning.
    I was also motivated by a Botvinnik quote about Reshevsky, where he stated that the latter was a "master of the two-move combination". That a world champion would make such an observation struck me as significant, although I did not really think about it until my friend made her suggestion.

    I have no idea to what extent her suggestion actually helped me, but I think it helped.
  5. Standard member orion25
    Art is hard
    24 Apr '10 09:10
    Hum, I got to try this... next time I play OTB I will look only (except if required) to very short combinations, but I vow to get them all right!
  6. 24 Apr '10 13:28
    Originally posted by greenpawn34

    I have also noticed from the many tournaments I have reported on that
    the stronger players tend to isolate themselves 10-15 minutes before the round
    to put themselves into 'The Zone'.

    The 'not so strong' players are often fooling around with their pals right
    up until the game starts.
    Interesting. I played in the Nottingham Congress last weekend and the only game I won (incidentally against the highest graded person I played) I'd been playing a quick game only just before, whereas before all the other rounds I'd been concentrating on which opening to play. Mind you, I was hardly one of the stronger players 😛