For many non-chess players, the ordinary connotations of the game depict it as almost medieval-like, too difficult, too boring, or only reserved for older men to play. But the reality is different and it is actually a very beneficial past-time, by helping you learn and increase your cognitive skills. 

As a game, it is simple enough for anyone to learn (some children ready to learn at age 4!), but has an intricate depth, that as a skill, one can pursue and study for many years. Which is part of what makes it such an intriguing game, there is no formula to win by (but many techniques), and does not deliver easy dead ends and victories like many common, modern board games today, so definitely not considered boring. Instead, it challenges your thought process, and if victorious gives you an intensely rewarding feeling of accomplishment – you may feel you can conquer the world, but if having lost, it doesn’t leave you wanting to forget but play again to see if you could try winning a different way. It’s great because anyone can play on any level, so it doesn’t require any level of expertise, just desire, and openness to play, and in turn, will reward you with so much more. 

 Thus, the connotations surrounding the game are changing. One example in which it has gained increasing popularity is with the release of a new series called ‘The queen's gambit’ that takes on a more female-empowering, and younger twist to the game, as it adds a semblance of an elite, young, and intelligent glamour to it; and rightfully so. Consequently, it has encouraged more young people to venture out and learn the game to understand the experience and challenge themselves to learn more. 

Amongst many benefits, chess teaches you to have a goal and overcome the obstacles on your way there. Just like in life you can either aimlessly wander around, hoping for a miracle, or set yourself a goal, build a plan and strive to accomplish it.  

But most importantly, chess learning helps to develop thinking skills, and directly contributes to academic performance, and makes people smarter in a variety of ways: 


  • Play chess to learn and develop patience and thoughtfulness  
  • Playing chess helps you to learn and improves communication skills and aptitude in recognizing patterns  
  • Learning to play Chess results in higher grades, especially in English and Math studies  
  • Learning Chess stimulates visualizing –players are prompted to imagine a sequence of actions before they happen  
  • Chess helps you to learn the value of hard work, concentration, and commitment  
  • Learning to play chess instills a sense of self-confidence and self-worth  
  • Chess helps to learn and develop the thinking ahead abilities –players have to think first only then act  

The list is truly endless … but this proves just how beneficial learning to play chess is, as it can develop, and lay the foundations for many valuable life skills, flexing the mind's concentration in every game, growing your intelligence as a person, whilst playing a game. This is why in many ways chess isn't just a game. A dance of strategy, a parallel to life, in which you learn from your defeats as well as your victories.