YouTube channels to help you on your chess journey
With its endless technicalities and complications, chess is a difficult game to master – especially for newcomers. Having been in that spot myself, here are four YouTube channels that helped me climb up the rating ladder and made me fall in love with the sport.
With over 3 million subscribers, GothamChess, a.k.a. International Master Levy Rozman, is the largest chess YouTuber in the world – and for good reason.
Levy has struck the perfect balance between entertaining and educating his audience. With his infectious personality and exceptional commentating skills, Levy can make the chessboard feel like a UFC octagon. What makes his content unique is his range. Whether it be instructional videos on chess openings, analysing chess games by top players, or covering the latest and hottest drama in the chess world, GothamChess has it all.
It is no wonder that his videos are beloved by chess enthusiasts around the globe.
Grandmaster Daniel "Danya" Naroditsky, lovingly called "Sensei" by his followers, is the epitome of educational chess content. Danya possesses an extraordinary ability to distil complex moves and variations into simple easy-to-digest forms that even a beginner can understand.
My favourite Danya content is his speed-run series where he starts from a lower rank and climbs his way up, all while demonstrating how to beat players at different ratings. Moreover, his guide videos on various chess principles are easily on par with most paid courses. And despite being one of the strongest chess players in the world, Danya remains eternally humble and fosters a wholesome inclusive community through his respectful and calm demeanour.
All in all, his channel is a treasure trove for players of all levels who want to take their game to the next level – or for casuals who just want to observe the sensei masterfully dismantling opponents in his dojo of sixty-four squares.
Chess games are often won or lost in the first few moves. Therefore, getting the opening moves right is critical to staying in the game – which is a tall task given the seemingly endless ways a chess game could begin.
Hanging Pawns is a channel catered to helping chess players navigate the treacherous complications of opening theory. His straightforward, no-nonsense approach is something any competitive chess player would appreciate. However, being more on the technical side, his videos are obviously not everyone's cup of tea. But for more serious players – especially those unable to afford expensive chess coaching – they are an invaluable resource.
Chess is a game of pattern recognition and so the best way to improve is to analyse the games of strong players and understand the underlying tactical motifs and strategic themes.
Agadmator makes that tedious process of studying games not only accessible but also a genuinely enjoyable process. His laidback vibe, dry humour, and fascinating insights into the world of chess are bound to keep you coming back for more as he guides you through the intricacies of contemporary chess games as well as some of the classics. The occasional appearance of his dog Medo doesn't hurt either!
Robiah currently embarking upon a vain pursuit of understanding Rawlsian ethics. Send him thoughts and prayers behind the veil of ignorance at [email protected]