Monday, June 1, 2009


If you are reading this for the first time, welcome.

I am John Wong, a chess enthusiast for 34 years. I started teaching the game when I was 18 and turned chess trainer since 2003 when I was retrenched. It has been a good 6 years, where I have been receiving students of all ages ( from 6 to 60) and temperaments.

During my 34 years of involvement in chess, I was once active in organising chess, having been involved with running chess tournaments, being in several positions in the Singapore Chess Federation during 1987-1998 and a brief return in 2003-4. My involvement in the National Junior Training Team in 1987 taught me valuable lessons when working with talented chess juniors then.

As for journalism, I was also active then in the publishing of the Singapore Chess Digest back in 1986-87. I also wrote several articles for the SCF, the last being the obituary of Prof Lim Kok Ann who was a mentor and elder. As for chess, I do think I am widely read, having 400 or more chess books in my library collected over the 34 years. In time to come I shall share my knowledge of what books are perhaps crucial in one's understanding of chess.

What made me write this blog?

There seems to be an aura of mystery about the topic of chess training, especially amongst parents today. Many have a vague idea as to what chess can do for their children, most are keen to try it amongst other mind-bending pursuits like Sudoku, abacus, math olympiad training and what not. Many parents sending their kids to chess training DO NOT play the game. As a result they are at the mercy of any party who claims they can do the job. Hence it is useful to have some guiding information by which these parents can evaluate and ascertain which trainers are beneficial for the child's chess education.

Hopefully my next few posts can shed some light on this area, in the hopes of informing what chess trainers can do, should or shouldn't do.

More to come ... do watch this space.


  1. Hey John. Nice to see you write.

  2. Good to have you sharing your insights in chess, especially for parents like me who do not play chess

  3. My pleasure, mainly wish to share what seems to be a murky subject of chess training yet lots of time and money invested in it without clear-cut objectives.