New Camp: Calculation Foundations

Originally published at:

From Wednesday 30th March till Sunday 3rd April will present a training camp on the foundations of effective calculation in chess with GM Jacob Aagaard.

The themes will include, but not be limited to:
  • The purpose of decision making
  • Defining calculation
  • Intuition and calculation – the two thinking methods
  • Slow down!
  • Visualization
  • When should you calculate
  • When should you stop calculating
  • Impulse control
  • Resistance
  • Long variations – what are they good for?
  • Common mistakes
  • Calculation mistakes from famous grandmasters

If anyone wants to submit one or two games to GM Jacob Aagaard for possible consideration, it can be done through our dedicated camps email (info on the forum).
Remember to mark clearly which position you are interested in the approach to and your specific question.

The schedule will be:

17.00-18.00 The foundation lesson (free to all members of Killer Chess Training)

18.10-19.10 In depth camp class (add-on)

19.20-20.20 In depth camp class (add-on)

The breaks and finish time are estimates

Although a lot of the themes in the camp will be familiar to the members of our academy already, it will use material that has not previously been used in the academy or published in books.

The recorded video classes will be available long-term for streaming on our website for paying participants (guaranteed for 2 years).

Cost for participation:

€278 for non-members of Killer Chess Training. This includes a monthly membership to the academy, which can be upgraded to a yearly membership with a voucher for €665 if you find that the academy is the right fit for you. (VAT included)

€129 for members (VAT included)

Free for those purchasing a yearly membership between March 1st and April 3rd. This includes renewals, even if your membership is not up for renewal anytime soon.

By the camp here! By a yearly membership here.

Hi guys,

I am mostly recovered from Covid-19, but is still a bit fatigued and recovering.

The last two days I have been writing the synopsis for the calculation camp. It is not done, but it is under control. It is perhaps the most prepared I have ever been for our classes :slight_smile:

The current title of the 5 days for the first hour will be called something like:

  1. What is Calculation?
  2. Training Calculation
  3. Long Variations?
  4. Defence
  5. Common Mistakes

The in-depth camp of 2-2.5 hours will be called something like:

  1. Imagination, Combinations, tactics
  2. Comparison, Intermediate Moves, Move orders
  3. Prophylaxis, Traps and Tricks
  4. Elimination
  5. Practical Examples

I will do whatever is working best at any moment during the camp. Also, I will check what has come in by email over the next few days.

I would have liked to have this ready earlier, but Covid disagreed…



We mentioned some books in the class Wednesday evening. Here they are:

Woodpecker Method, Smith&Tikkannen. Available as a book and on Forward Chess, (my preference) and chessable.
Excelling at Chess Calculation, Aagaard (2004). A decent representation of Dvoretsky’s system, but with a lot of stuff missing. I am writing a new book on calculation this year, to be published next year.
Grandmaster Preparation – Calculation Aagaard (2012). Ten years old, still with a few mistakes in the most recent edition, but really not many. It is again a good representation of Dvoretsky’s advanced system of calculation with exercises divided into categories based on thinking method.
Imagination in Chess Gaprindashvili. Almost 20 years old. Definitely with some mistakes. I did not like the way he viewed the thinking process, but it is 99% an exercise book and one of my favourites.
Sahovski Chess Informant Encyclopedia of Chess CombinationsNow in its 5th edition, I think. All the editions were great. Almost 50 years worth of collection. 3000+ exercises. The GOAT in combination collections.
Combination as a Fine Art Keres. Mentioned by Mike. I have never seen it, but I trust Mike’s judgement. Don’t know if you can even find it anywhere these days…


Combination as a Fine Art is actually an English language collection of short pieces by Richter. Keres wrote the intro, and Goles was the editor.

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Also, the quote from Botvinnik about needing to work on two move (or three-ply?) variations comes from the notes to his game against Reshevsky from the radio match in 1955.


A good bit of research John :slight_smile:

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That I remembered as Botvinnik complaining his 2 move calculation was wack. Was not sure this was what Ivan was referring to. Will check the quote now :slight_smile:

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@Kallia Hi Kallia, The 3 April initial session of the Calculation Foundations camp is no longer on the site. Is it possible to post a link so that I can watch it before the course drops off the site ? Thanks Kind regards Malcolm

You have about 24 hours!

Sorry @Kallia but I still cannot see a link to the 3 April session. Cheers Malcolm

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It’s there now!

The access rights are probably not set correctly - I have no access.

Hmm… now I do. This whole authentication thingy is a bit sus. :smiley:

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You need to log in first :slight_smile:
Also, sometimes it’s good to clear cookies. I keep seeing old versions (sometimes 2017 versions) with a few websites.