Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Bring it on, Baby!

As I mentioned in my very first post, I have only played in one tournament so far (this was back in April or so). I would love to play more tournaments, but unfortunately there aren't too many taking place in my neck of the woods.

Well, on December 1st (weekend after next) I will be playing my second tournament. Yeah baby! I am excited, and at the same time a little nervous. I want to be as well prepared as I can, but I'm not sure what the best tournament prep is. I will continue to do some intense tactics training in the next week and a half, and probably brush up on my openings. I'm taking this more seriously than the first tournament, so this time I won't be going out the night before :)

Anybody have any pearls of wisdom on preparing for tournaments?


Blue Devil Knight said...

Two things stick out for me:
1. Be well rested.
2. Practice on a real board if you are used to computers.

The first is self-explanatory. The second because if you practice on computers it is a real shift mentally to be able to visualize things on the real 3-D board. It usually takes me a game or two to make the shift, unless I make sure to do it starting a couple of days before the tournament.

Most of all have fun!!! Blundercheck consistently and you will win many games.

Chessaholic said...

Thanks for your advice! I painfully realized the consequences of not being well rested in my first tournament, so I'm taking this advice to heart.

The second point is a real issue for me that I'm struggling with not just before this tournament, but in general. So much study and online play takes place on my computer, sometimes I find it hard to translate things onto a real board. I would say my 3D vision is only 75% as good as my 2D vision. Which is why I'm trying to force myself to play through plenty of master games on real boards, study openings on real boards, and of course play as many games as possible on real boards.

I also have to focus on Blunderchecking - I tell myself that I will do it but often I get too excited with my own plans and forget all about it...

But like you say - it's really all about having fun :)

Anonymous said...

You got some great advice from BDK. I also listen to some kick ass music before the tournament to get into the right mood.

Looking forward to seeing your games!

Anonymous said...

Two things stick out for me:

1. Bring plenty of sleeping pills to drop into your opponents' drink of choice.

2. Don't do drugs. Unless you're a kid.

In all seriousness, finding some sort of pre-tournament routine can be helpful. Not necessarily a step 1-2-3 type thing, just so you feel as loose and comfortable as possible.

For me, I'll eat a Jack-in-the-Box Ciabatta breakfast sandwich if the tourney starts in the morning, or a Chipotle burrito if the tourney starts later. Upon getting to the site, I walk around the premises, outdoors if practical. I do not talk to people (beyond saying "Hi" to be polite) and do not play or study chess at all until the first game starts.

For me, this clears out my brain and helps me relax. You will develop your own style, I'm sure.

Chessaholic said...

samurai - I'll try to listen to some aggressive music to get my killer instinct going :)

liquideggproduct: damn I don't qualify as a kid so I guess I won't be doing drugs... I'm a fan of routines (being a golfer and all) so I'll take your advice and try to find something that works for me.