The Complete Chess Workout: Test Your Solving Power


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International Master Richard Palliser makes his Chessable debut this week with the release of his classic book, The Complete Chess Workout 1, in the form of a brand new course.

Richard Palliser Complete Chess Workout

We are delighted to have Richard on board. Having known him for many years, you may think I am just biased when I tell you – without fear of successful contradiction – that he is one of the best chess writers around. Or you could try reading his books and then you will find out I am right.

Richard’s writing style manages to make his material fully accessible without ever dumbing down. This is by no means as simple as it sounds. Numerous authors choose to present wood that cannot be seen for trees or they resort to gimmicks and slang to try and hook the reader.

We will find out a lot more about Richard and his lifetime’s dedication to chess (including his fine work as the long-standing editor of CHESS Magazine) in our forthcoming and exclusive interview.

The Complete Chess Workout: Daily Training

Richard tells us: ‘Spending as little as 10-15 minutes a day on one’s tactical ability really can reap dividends.’ This doesn’t sound too arduous as workouts go. 10-15 minutes? Surely we can all manage to squeeze that sliver of time into even the busiest of days.

The Complete Chess Workout 1 will keep the ‘solving muscle’ supple. Richard chose the material very carefully, driven by his desire ‘to produce a book that would improve the tactical knowledge of the average player.’

Today we shall take a look at four sample positions from the 1,200 in The Complete Chess Workout 1 and see if your solving skills are still up to the mark as you come to the end of another very busy week.

Two pieces of advice from Richard:

  1. ‘Keep in mind John Nunn’s very useful mnemonic: LPDO (‘loose pieces drop off’). Indeed, it’s very noticeable just how many tactics are to do with a piece being undefended or poorly defended.’
  2. ‘Just remember that you’re not always looking to force mate; quite often the solution is just a little tactic to pick up a pawn or two.’

Warming Up

Chess Workout TacticB. Esen – T. Demirel

White to play

1 Bxa6! exploits the pin down the c-file to win a pawn.

Opening Tricks and Traps

Chess Opening Trap

D. Jeremic – N. Nestorovic

Black to play

1 …Nd4! and the Siberian trap costs White his queen for two pieces since he has to avoid
2 Nxd4 Qxh2 checkmate.

Skill in the Endgame

Chess Workout Stalemate Trap

R. Palliser – M. Round

Black to play

1 …Qxf2+! There’s no way to escape Black’s checks and it’s stalemate after 2 Kxf2.

Loose Pieces and Overloading

Tal Tactic Against Benko

Tal – Benko

White to play

1 Rd8+! won the exchange on h8 in view of 1 …Kxd8? 2 Nxf7+ and 3 Nxe5.

Did you solve the four puzzles above? Check your answers by highlighting the white space beneath each position.

The Complete Chess Workout 1 – Available Now

There are still 1,196 more positions to examine in Richard Palliser’s excellent book, so head for the The Complete Chess Workout 1 course right now.


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