Chess Lesson # 75: Get The Most Out Of Your Tactics Training

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In Chess, tactics are the most important component. We have talked about it in other lessons, but today I am sharing something very powerful for when you train tactics on your own. Hope you find it useful and benefit from it as much as my students and I do.

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My Book Recommendations:
First tactics book:
Mixed tactics book:
Advanced tactics book:
Advanced tactics book (II):
Carlsen’s book (excellent):
Kramnik’s book (excellent):
Pirc Defense book:
Endgames book:

Learn how to play Chess the right way from beginner to master level. National Master Robert Ramirez will take you up the pyramid by following a proven Chess training program he has been improving and implementing for over 10 years.

Benefits of Playing Chess:
​- Promotes brain growth
– Increases problem-solving skills
– It exercises both sides of the brain
– Raises your IQ
– Sparks your creativity
– Teaches planning and foresight
– Teaches patience and concentration
– Optimizes memory improvement
– Improves recovery from stroke or disability
– Helps treat ADHD
Chess is an intellectual battle where players are exposed to numerous mental processes such as analysis, attention to detail, synthesis, concentration, planning and foresight. Psychological factors are also present on and off the board; playing Chess stimulates our imagination and creativity. Every single move a player makes is the result of a deep analysis based on the elements presented on the battlefield.

Chess in its essence teaches us psychological, sociological and even moral values. In a Chess game, both players start with the same amount of material and time. The fact that the white pieces move first is considered to be practically irrelevant —especially because a player typically plays one game as white and one game as black. Consequently, the final result of the battle solely depends on each player. It doesn’t matter if you win by taking advantage of your opponent’s mistakes or by simply avoiding mistakes yourself. Truth is that Chess is an extremely individual sport and our defeats can only be blamed on ourselves and no one else. And this, in the end, only benefits us because we learn to be and feel responsible for our actions and never come up with excuses to justify ourselves.

We also learn that when it comes to our victories on the board, our opponent’s mistakes play a more significant role than our own skills. Let’s not forget that a Chess game without any mistakes would be a draw. This way, Chess provides us with another valuable life lesson: be humble at all times.

About National Master Robert Ramirez:

With an outstanding background as a professional Chess player and over 8 years of teaching experience, Robert Ramirez brings both his passion and his expertise to the board, helping you believe & achieve!

Robert Ramirez was introduced to the fascinating world of Chess when he was 5 years old and has participated in prestigious tournaments such as the World Open Chess Tournament and the Pan American Intercollegiate Team Championships. Thanks to his performance, he has earned his National Master title from the United States Chess Federation.

Currently, NM Ramirez and his carefully selected team teach at several private schools in the counties of Miami-Dade and Broward and they also offer private lessons. He says the key to their success as Chess coaches is their ability to adapt to every student and to make lessons fun and interesting for students and even their family members.

130 Comments

  1. My solution attempts: (I created the PGNs on lichess AFTER I calculated every line in my head, so no cheating here.)

    Puzzle #2

    1. Re8+ Kh7 (1… Bf8 2. Rxf8+ Kxf8 (2… Kh7 3. Qd3+ f5 4. Qxc2) (2… Kg7 3. Rxf7+ Qxf7 4. Nxf7 Kxf7) 3. Nf5+ Rc5 (3… Ke8 4. Qe7#) (3… Kg8 4. Rd8+ Kh7 5. Qd3?? { I thought this would be a fork of the king and rook, because I didn't see the knight would be blocking the queen's attack on the king when calculating. Big mistake! 🙁 }) 4. Rd8#) 2. Qd3+ f5 3. Qxc2 *

    Puzzle #3

    1. Rg1+ Kh5 (1… Kh6 { I can't figure out what to do here. I thought of going Bf8+ to force the king away from the h6 square, but the black rook just takes the bishop. I'd guess there's some way to threaten promotion with the e5 pawn, but I don't know how to execute the idea. }) 2. Rxh7# *

    Puzzle #4

    1. Qc3+ { Only legal moves are to block with bishop or queen. There's only one block that's defended, namely Qg7. } 1… Qg7 2. Qc8+ { Again, it is also possible for black to block with the bishop but it wouldn't be defended. } 2… Qg8 3. Qxg8# *

    Puzzle #5

    { The position looks closed, so I'm thinking of pushing e5 to shred it open or maybe even sacrifice the queen with Qf6+, but I don't see any way to execute the idea and win material.

    I also noticed black's knight and rook are aligned, so I wanted to attack them with a bishop or queen diagonally, but I didn't see how to do that either, especially with the pawn on d6 blocking the diagonal. }

    *

  2. we have to play till end with computer?

  3. Nice video! I went the long way worked it out in my head. I missed Qf8 sac. 9:24 the queen. I saw after Kg8 Rd8+ Kh7 Rh8+ KxR Qf8+ Kh7 Qg7++ lol at least I saw all that.

    ** just saw the king could have went to Kg6 and escape. So close.. 🙂

  4. Thankyou , that's really helpful toiling to finish the stuff against computer would sprout virtues in the respective player. ❤️

  5. queen to d3 and followed up with rook to e8

  6. In the third position, I would play pawn takes f6. Black's king basically has to take or we'll get a queen and black will have to trade a rook or something to stop it. So, after takes, The move bishop e7 will fork the king and rook.

    The position is TOTALLY winning for white!

  7. In position 4, the move that leads to mate is queen c3. Only move for black is blocking with the queen. After that, I'll play queen c8 check. All of black's move leads to checkmate now. #1: Queen f8, takes, mate. #2: Queen g8, takes, mate. #3: Bishop d8, go back to #1 or #2. 😁

    Hope that's useful info!!

  8. In the second position, I see that black has checkmate in one. so that if we can get some sort of checkmate, we need every move to be checks. In this position, I would play the move rook e8. If the king goes to h7, queen d3 would be a fork. On the other hand, if they block with the bishop, then I'll take it, with check. Again, if the king moves to h7, it's mate in one. So he's forced to take. After that, I'll play knight f5 with check from my queen. Now black has two options. If the king goes e8, queen e7 would deliver mate. And if he goes to g8, rook d8 is mate.

    I hope that wasn't too much wording, but it's what i know.

  9. wow, I just watched to the part where you revealed the answer to position #2. Didn't see a lot of that!

  10. The difference between me and Canelo Alvarez is that he knows how to finish a fight. I have a lot of tools and often have no brainer mid games that I just lose, either because I get bored and careless, or overly cautious. I would stop pushing forward and fix my structure, and accidentally let them exploit an opening. I think it would be beneficial for me to start thinking about all possibilities instead of just looking for easy checks on the king and queen in one or two.. so yeah this is very helpful advice

  11. I do that I solve quite a lot of difficult problems but then I get stopped but I also play the finish out. It would also be good to be able to repeat it. Position 2 I saw almost instantly — the idea — Re8+ if Kh7 Qd3+ or if Bf8 Rxf8+ the KxQ sacs on f8 and forces mate….with Nf5+ etc (Rd8 mate or the Q mates on g7)….

  12. This is a great training tip. Some might think that “but now you don’t get as many problems done”, but as you play the game, in your attempt to win a winning position, you will have to encounter additional tactical threats. This is very practical

  13. Playing out tactical puzzles against a computer is horrible advice. Let me explain…1. tactics training is about pattern recognition. It's not about closing out a game. New players should spend no longer then 30 seconds on a puzzle…then they should look at the answer and revisit the puzzle a few hours later and then again the next day… remember it's pattern recognition. 2. Playing chess , believe it or not doesn't make you a better chess player. You can go on any chess site and find 1200 ELO players with 50k games. 3 there is generally a mix-up between the ideas of chess tactics and calculation. If u r training calculation..yes one problem can take hours to solve..but if you are just training tactics… pattern recognition is key.

  14. Thank you Robert for this great video. I like very much your practical approach to the game. Keep it simple. When you played against the computer, you took no risk: secure your Bishop, secure your King, avoiding all complications, take your time, and go for an easy pawn endgame. I learn a lot from your comments when you are playing. But to be better at chess, I need mainly to improve my tactics.

  15. Would have been helpful to post the positions as text so we could paste into LiChess!
    Thought #5 should have ended in a (quickish) mate, so go extremely frustrating against the engine!

  16. 2 answer re8+ if bf8 rxf8+ kxf8 nf5+ if ke8 qe7# if kg8 rd8 + kh7 rh8+ kxh8 qf8+ kh7 qg7# so for re8 kh7 means qd3 fork we get the queen

  17. 4 answer qc3+ qg7 qc8+ bd8 qxd8+ qg8 qxg8#

  18. Your explanation is so nice. Keep on making vid's

  19. Everytime I set up the board and choose continue from here, it automatically moves first. Any thoughts on what to do so that I get to move first? I did select which color I'm playing.

  20. This fill my hole of Tactics Trainning. Thank you.

  21. I stumbled onto this by accident in lichess puzzles. I solved a bunch, went away for a bit. Came back and couldn't figure out what to do in one of the puzzles. Then I looked below and saw that it was already solved and said "continue (to next puzzle)". So I had gotten the tactic done but didn't know what to do next to press the win. Thanks for the great training tip… learning to convert the advantage into a win.

  22. For puzzle 🧩 2. Ree8+ Bf8 Rxf8 Kxe8 Nf5+ b4 Rd8#

  23. Hi NM Robert Ramirez, I am extremely grateful for your help! Thanks a lot!

  24. #2 1.Te8+ Bf8 2.TxBf8 KxTf8 3. Ng6+ Kg8 4.Qf8+ KxQf8 5.Td8# #3 didnt see Rd3 #4 1.Qc3+ Qg7 2. Qc8+ Qf8 3.QxQf8# #5 failed didnt think about 2.Qxf6+

  25. It is a great idea to play the game after solving a tactic. I've thrown the game many times where I've either given my opponent the win, or I've end up getting a drawn position. The practice of playing the game after solving a tactic will surely help me. Thank you for all the great videos and explanations, and for acknowledging the fact that even though we're solving more advanced tactics and positions, many people have still not caught up, with phrases like "This one is pretty hard". I'm very proud of myself for being able to solve the 2nd puzzle. Keep on making great videos!

  26. I started chess 2 months ago my rating was like 160 rapid and i started this course now I am at 600 rapid 🎉

  27. my original plan for exercise #2 was to check the king on the back rank with my rook, forcing it to H7 where i can move my e3 to fork the king and rook, gaining material.

  28. My thoughts:
    1) Black are threatening mate in 1
    2) The black rook is not protected
    3) We need to make checks until checkmate or until we win the rook or maybe the queen…

    Re8+ (if Kh7 then Qd3+ and we win the rook)
    Bf8 Rxf8 Kxf8 Nc8+ (the idea of Nc8 is not to block the b1-h7 diagonal for the fork to be possible and if Ke8 then Qe7# possible)
    But then i realised that there is now Kg7 and no more checks, and sacrifice the second rook Rg8 seems to give nothing…

    Then i thought, ok what else has the knight besides Nc8? What if knife f5? 🙂

    Nf5+ with the idea to take away g7 from the king, and remaining the control over e7.
    Kg8 Rd8+ Kh7 Rh8+! (sacrificing the rook because of Kxh8 Qf8+ Kh7 Qg7#)
    Kg6 Rxh6+ Kxf5 Qd3+ (with the fork on the rook)

  29. Why are you teaching us for free? The lessons are freaking wholesome

  30. Great advice, I’m trying to finish the first tactic against the 3200 rated engine, but I can’t. I’ll keep trying.

  31. Like + subcribe + comment below the video is the least what i can to do for you for creating these free chess courses

  32. This is an underrated piece of advice.
    You will get a lot more from chess pizzles this way.
    Many thanks as always, coach! ♟️♥️

  33. Great content. I watch you for like 2 weeks, already my rating went + 100 elo in rapid and blitz.

  34. Thank you so much man. Got from 1100 elo to now hovering around 1490-1520. Watching all your courses so I can learn more and learn how to decide what to do in the middlegame. I oftenend up choosing the wrong way to open up the game causing me to get a disadvantage.

  35. I think #2 answer is rook e8 if king h7 then queen d3 if after rook e8 bishop f7 then rook takes bishop king takes rook then knight f5 then king e8 queen e7 mate if king g8 then rook d8 king h7 queen f8

    In #3 rook g1 king h6 bishop f8 then probably rook d3

    In #4 queen c3 queen g7 then queen c8
    i think these are my answers from my 1350elo experince

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