For anyone who is interested in improving their blitz chess skills, this article will offer ten tips for improving. All of the following strategies are easy to implement and I have found that they greatly help with my own blitz chess games. Blitz chess is always a fun and challenging way to play chess.
The best way to get better at blitz chess is to improve your overall understanding of chess and just get lots of practice in playing gradually faster and faster games.
Below is my top 10 tips to get better at blitz chess and the rest of the article are going to expand on most of the important tips.
- 1. Only gradually go from 15 minute time limit games to 5 minute blitz games
- 2. Play a lot of blitz chess games
- 3. Understand chess better
- 4. Using 2-3 minute break between each game will allow you to refocus, relax and get yourself mentally prepared for the next game
- 5. Use tactics in your games to build up an advantage for yourself
- 6. Find as many time pressure problems as you can and work on solving them
- 7. Take every opportunity to work on your calculation skills before and after every game
- 8. Try not to think of what the result will be or how the opponent is going to react when you play weaker pieces early in the game
- 9. Play blitz chess games against computer so you can challenge yourself
- 10. Never be afraid to try out new things in your games and play as fast as you can with good time management.
There are many ways to improve at blitz chess, but they all have one thing in common: practice. You need to play a lot of blitz if you want to get better. And not just any old experience either, but high quality games that will stretch your brain and test your skills by putting you under pressure or forcing you to think on the fly against tough opponents. If there’s one thing I’ve learned from my own experiences, it’s this – The best way to improve at anything is through hard work! Blitz chess is no different!
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Blitz Chess and Classical Chess Are Still The Same Game
Although many people assume that blitz chess is completely different from any other kind of chess, in reality it’s just another variation. Best moves and optimal strategy are exactly the same, only you have to make decisions faster.
The answer to how you can become better at playing blitz chess comes down to one thing: improving your skills!
For beginners who are unfamiliar with this type of speed-based play, I would suggest waiting until getting some more experience in classical games or maybe reading a few books or taking some lessons before trying something too intense like Blitz Chess.
Once you’ve had more experience and understanding about when not only good decision making matters but also fast reflexes (which takes lots and lots of practice!), then start having fun by mixing up your standard games by occasionally making moves quickly. This is a great way to get some extra rapid practice in, and at the same time have better time to make difficult decisions.
Only Gradually Play Faster and Faster Games
There is no reason to just start playing 5 minute time limit games nonstop. This will be too overwhelming and you won’t get better at blitz chess this way. You have to slowly get used to making decisions faster at the chess board.
You will in time get more comfortable making fast moves. This is in part also because you will develop a better sense of what is important in any given position. You simply don’t have time to analyze every single possible move on each turn. You instinctively identify a small shortlist of possible best moves in the position and make your choice rather quickly.
When you want to start getting better at blitz chess and you are only used to classical games, just start by playing a bunch of 15 minute time limit games. This will still give you time to think for some time in key situations in games, while at this same time get you used to be more aware of your remaining time on the chess clock.
When you are comfortable 15 minute games move on to 10 minute games. Stay at this time limit until your comfortable again and feel you are not making too many mistakes or blunders and move on to 7 minute games and then finally 5 minute games.
Once you get some practice at blitz chess, which is around the 5 minute time limit – it will begin to feel like you still have some time to evaluate important moves. This is because many simple moves will be made almost instantly. You will get in the habit of saving your time for spots that need some more attention.
Play Blitz Games Against Stronger Players
The best way to improve in blitz chess, as in any other game, is by playing stronger opponents.
If you never win, this can be demoralizing and disheartening. To avoid this feeling of constant defeat, find an opponent that is just a bit above your skill level, so you can also get the occasional win.
Playing slightly stronger players also mean you can get very valuable feedback on your play. Never be afraid to ask for advice from other better players. You will be surprised at how eager and willing good chess players are to share their knowledge.
This is the best way to learn. And on top of that, you will also get more comfortable playing blitz chess when you are not always the one being defeated all the time!
Don’t Be Afraid To Take Chances
When playing blitz chess there are some positions where you need to take chances right from the start. In classical games this won’t work so well, but in blitz games this type of decision making is just as important as good defensive play.
This means taking some risks and sacrificing material for attacking chances or to gain a positional advantage.
There is a reason trappy opening lines are used often in blitz games and even more so in bullet chess. Because of the time pressure they are much more likely to work. Sneaky traps can be hard to spot if you don’t have much time to spend on each move.
To be good at Blitz Chess you have to learn how to play for the win – even when facing better opponents! This can mean taking risks you wouldn’t normally do.
Play Blitz Chess On a Regular Basis
Playing blitz games on a regular basis is a great way to improve your game and at the same time have fun. All of the benefits of playing blitz chess are similar to what you get from chess puzzles. Whenever you have a free minute, it’s worth asking yourself: “Should I be playing blitz chess right now?” Or
Blitz chess will in fact also have the benefit of helping you to take your general chess game to the next level. And as some great players have mentioned: learning to play for the win is one of the most important skills in chess.
Your objective when playing blitz or bullet games should always be to win the game, after all there is no real fun otherwise and you also want to get better at blitz!
When you have some time to spare log into your chess app of choice and start up a blitz game. You might improve faster than you would have thought possible! You should of course balance your games between fast games and classical games. If you neglect switching it up, you risk developing a more permanent bad habit of moving without giving complicated positions enough attention.
Practice Your Opening Moves
Practicing your opening moves makes you capable of making moves fast in the opening. If you know more about the opening or have more experience playing the opening you can get an advantage in more than one way.
First of all you can probably win material or get a better position earlier in the game if you know the opening better than your opponent. Almost as importantly you can make moves much faster than your opponent giving your more time to spend on difficult moves later on in middlegame and endgame.
Many experts actually recommends playing fast games when learning a new opening to get a feel for the moves and what kind of positions that are likely to come out of the opening. When you practice the opening this way you want to make sure you review each game.
When reviewing games pay special attention to when you start being unsure of the correct move in the opening. This is where you look up in your opening book or look it up online and next time you get in the same spot, you will surely know exactly what to do.
Get Better at Defending Against Attacks
Blitz chess is all about playing for checkmate, not thinking too much about stuff like what your opponent might be planning with pawn moves that seemingly won’t lead anywhere.
Blitz chess is also all about taking chances. Hence why so many blitz games are full of sacrifices and attacks. The advantage to this is that in a very short time you can learn how to defend attacks and this can then be reflected in your overall game.
If you are taking a lot of chances you can probably expect to get attacked as well. It is often difficult to find the time to defend yourself properly in complicated positions, but if you play a blitz game against aggressive chess players and lose because you were not able to defend yourself after taking on a risky position, then just try to put this experience to good use.
Over time you will be able to recognize more and better ways of defending yourself. It is in fact not so dissimilar from the way people learn to defend themselves in martial arts or how they learn to defend against physical attacks.
Playing for a checkmate is a great way to be more effective in the game and it’s actually not that hard to do once you get the hang of it. If you are used to thinking about threats and then how to defend those threats, you might find that playing blitz chess is actually easier.
It might come as a surprise, but playing blitz chess is not all about being aggressive. It’s also important to be able to defend yourself when your opponent decides to be aggressive.
Take Time To Think About Your Next Move Before Your Opponent Moves
This is probably one of the most important tips that are relevant to playing all kinds of chess, whether it’s blitz or slow chess. In blitz or bullet chess it especially crucial. You absolutely can not afford to let your mind go blank when it’s your turn. You have to remind yourself what you are doing, where you stand and what your next move is going to be.
If you plan ahead and make sure you know what your plans are in advance then it’s easier to move on to your next move, since you have already thought about it in advance. So as soon as you make your own move immediately start to think, what should I do if my opponent does this, or how should I react if my opponent goes there?
This keeps you one step ahead if your opponent is not doing the same. If you are used to thinking about threats and then how to defend those threats, you might find that playing blitz chess is actually not much harder than classical games. Blitz chess also tends to reward players for being aggressive which is why it’s important to defend against this by thinking ahead of your opponent.
Study Tactics and
You should study tactics and strategy for blitz chess just like you would do for slow or classical chess. Blitzz is a very tactical game and if you don’t know the basic tactics, then you are going to be struggling a lot.
Basic forks, pins, double attacks and so on should really be second nature to spot. You need to practice this a lot to get great at blitz chess. You wouldn’t want to miss tactics that could give you an edge in the game. You also don’t want to spend too many precious seconds on moves that should not take long to find.
If you know most basic tactics very well, it’s just easier to play blitz chess. You will be able to see more and think ahead of your opponent in a more efficient way.
FAQ – Frequenly Asked Questions About How To Get Better At Blitz Chess
We get a lot of questions at Chesspen about how to get better at blitz chess. We have collected the top 10 most frequently asked questions below.
What should you do if you want to get better at blitz chess?
To get better at blitz chess you should play blitz chess on a regular basis. Next to playing more blitz games, you can work on your openings and positional chess as well.
Developing a better general understanding of each area of chess will help you greatly. Other than that just get a lot of experience.
Why is it important to play against stronger players?
It is an important part of developing as a chess player to play against stronger players because in this way you develop a better understanding of the game.
Stronger players can also give you valuable feedback after the game. You might not notice certain errors you make over and over again, so it is a big help to get a good player to points these tendencies out for you.
How does playing stronger players also mean getting valuable feedback on your play?
You are not playing blitz just for the sake of getting better at it. You want to win as well, and you might not even know everything that you are doing wrong. There is a chance that a stronger player will notice your mistakes and kindly bring them up to you after the game is finished.
Never be afraid to ask another player for advice. They probably love chess just as much as you and they will most likely be happy to help you. After all, chess is a community!
The next important question is – how can I find stronger players to help me out? A great way is to simply join a chess club where there will likely be players of all levels from beginners to very highly rated players.
When playing blitz games, why should a player take chances right from the start?
You don’t really have to take many chances when playing blitz games. It is actually very much comes down to what games you like to play. It is never a bad idea to mix things up.
Traps have a much higher likelihood of working out, since time pressure will make it harder for your opponent to realize what’s going on. At least if he doesn’t know the trap himself.
The best traps to use in blitz chess games are traps where there is a plan B and you still have a fine position – if your opponent plays well and doesn’t fall for the trap.
Perhaps try a very aggressive yet solid opening system like The London System. It is very easy to learn the important opening moves, and if your opponent does not know how to defend it can lead to very fast checkmates.
Why are sneaky traps more likely to work in blitz games than in classical games?
In blitz chess sneaky traps are much more likely to work because of time pressure. It is easier for a player to fall for a trap when there is not much time left on the clock and they can make bigger mistakes.
In classical games there is more time for you your opponent to get a sense of what is going on. After all a trap usually involve a strangely looking move. Most often it is a move that seems like a mistake because you can seemingly take a free pawn or something without any drawbacks. That’s where you are wrong.
When you have more time and get a bit experience in chess you will start to always wonder if your opponent makes a seemingly bad move for no reason. Always be thinking: “Hey, what’s going on here?”.
When facing better opponents, what should a player learn how to do?
When facing better opponents, a player should try to learn how to develop good habits in their chess games and identify common mistakes. It is always a good idea to review games you play against better players. Look for mistakes you made and try to find out why the moves your opponent played worked.
The ability to find good moves in the opening and in mid-game is also important. Don’t get discouraged if you make a seemingly bad move and your opponent makes a much better one! – Just keep playing and try to make better moves in the future.
Learning to find good moves and see tactics early can be hard, but it will pay off in your chess.
What is the best way of learning and getting better at blitz chess?
If you want to get better at blitz chess, there are a couple of things that are very useful. Keep track of games played and try not to repeat the same mistakes. Just fixing one or two things you are doing wrong will make it easier to win games and more importantly, not lose as many games as you used to.
It also helps if you know your opponent’s style of play and the openings he or she prefers to do. This will most likely lead to a clear advantage for you in the opening.
If you want to keep track of games, I can recommend using chess analysis software like the ones offered by Chessbase.
Why is it important to take risks when playing blitz games and not just when playing classical games?
Taking risks and going for the win should be natural when playing any type of chess game. It all comes down to how you define risk, though.
If you define risk as doing something that seems stupid, then there is no need to take risks when playing blitz chess games – and I really mean it.
However, if you define risk as being something that gives a much bigger reward for taking the risk than not doing so, then there is a place for risk-taking in every game – including blitz chess.
Taking risks is vital to playing good, aggressive and exciting chess games.
How often should you play blitz chess?
There is no perfect amount of blitz games you should play in any given period. Alway mix up your blitz games with speed games or classical games. If you only play blitz or bullet this can severely limit your development as a chess player.
Bad habits are easy to come by, but very hard to get rid of. When ploughing through a bunch of blitz games every time you sit down to play chess it is likely that you will neglect reviewing games and learning from your own mistakes and blunders.
A good way to solve this is to force yourself to play one session of regular chess games and then a session of blitz games. Mixing it up is the right way to go, and of course don’t forget to do also study the other important areas of chess.
What is the best tool for playing and practicing Blitz Chess online?
There are quite a few good providers of online chess where you can play blitz chess and find opponents fast.
Here is a few that will definitely suit your needs and then some:
- Internet Chess Club (ICC)
Either of the options mentioned above can provide games for you. It’s all about finding the site with the players you like playing against. This may take some time, but will be worth it once you find the right one.
If you want to take it a step further, you can also look into chess analysis software that is paired well with online chess sites.
As a side-note you can also try looking for local clubs or meetups in your area. Even if there are not many players interested in blitz chess, you can still get a good practice schedule.
Chess is a skill that requires lots of work and dedication to be able to play at a high standard. However, it’s also very fun to learn how better and improve!
How can you get better at blitz chess if you only have a short time to practice every day or week?
If you have a short time to practice, it’s important that you keep track of your progress and try not to repeat the same mistakes.
There are lots of ways to do this, and for me personally I prefer doing that by keeping a chess database where I can keep track of the games I played.
When you keep track of your own games and know how well or poorly you have played in a given session, then you can easily discern your mistakes and figure out how to avoid them in the future.
If you want to get better at playing blitz chess, then it’s important that you keep track of your own games, and analyze mistakes and blunders. Keep a chess database or play online so you can always review games after you play.
Why is it important to keep a good attitude towards the game of chess when learning blitz chess?
A simple reason why you need to keep a good attitude towards chess is that it takes lots of time!
This means that you can’t let your emotions get the best of you, or you will miss out on many improvements that could have been made if you kept a good attitude.