This is my study plan for February 2022.

New Format

I saw this short video from Kostya Kavutskiy about making a study plan. He broke it down into 3 parts:

  • Play: Play longer games, analyze, and learn from your mistakes.
  • Learn: Do one book/course at a time. Spend 30-45 minutes on that at least 5 times a week
  • Solve: 30-45 minutes a day, every day. Focus on tactics and calculation exercises

I’m going to try to follow this model this month and see how it goes.

February Study Plan


Here are my goals:

  1. Play 30-Minute Games - At least 2-3 games per week. Playing the moves on a physical board.
  2. Analyze Every Game - Combination of reviewing the game without an engine first, then using the Game Review feature
  3. Play OTB - Try to play one OTB tournament this month
  4. Stop Playing Blitz - In the first 2 weeks of January I played 60 games of blitz. It is fun but it isn’t helping me improve, maybe making it harder to improve. I don’t think about my moves and I don’t analyze my blitz games, so I am going to stop.

I looked at my games for 2021 and it looked like when I only played rapid games my rapid rating went up (see this weekly update).


Continue reading The Soviet Chess Primer. I should be spending at least 30 minutes a day on this book, at least 5 times a week. I am taking detailed notes and playing through all the examples and games.

That’s it. The goal is to focus on one thing at a time.


TypeTime Per DayToolCourse
Categorized Tactics10 minutesChessableLearn Chess the Right Way - Book 1: Must Know Checkmates and Book 2: Winning Material.
General Tactics10 minutesChessableTactics Time 1
Personalized Tactics10-20 minutesAimchess“Personalized Workout” and “Tactics Workout”

I give all credit for this Chessable method to a blog post by Alex Crompton. I set a timer for 10 minutes, review any moves from the spaced repetition algorithm, and then learn new moves to fill up the time. I also have a cheat sheet for Chessable tactic settings when I start a new course.

Everything Else

What If I Have A Few More Minutes?

If I have done everything above (tactics, book study, analyzing my latest game), here are some things I could do:

  1. Chess Steps Workbooks: Additional “solve” opportunity here. This is probably better than puzzle rush. I am currently on Level 2.
  2. Watch a video from my long list of videos to watch. Take notes if possible to be an active learner.
  3. Do something isn’t chess related! We all need to take breaks!

What I’m Not Doing

  • Studying Openings - I need to focus on one thing and one thing only. For now that is The Soviet Chess Primer. At my level just following the opening principles will probably be enough. I will have to be OK with losing some games out of the opening, but that has not been a big problem at my level.
  • Studying Endgames - This is an area I need help in. However, in the spirit of “only do one thing at a time” I am going to hold off on this. Likely I will move on to Silman’s Complete Endgame Course when I am done with Soviet Chess Primer.
  • Blitz - I said it above, but just to reinforce: stop playing blitz.