Stamina most important thing in chess, physical training key to get rid of tension: Viswanathan Anand – India Today

Posted: January 6, 2020 at 10:44 am


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Viswanathan Anand, speaking on the latest episode of India Today Inspiration, shed light on the physical demands of chess and how he has still not figured out how to get a good night's sleep after a bad day at the office.

Viswanathan Anand stressed the importance of physical training for chess players (Reuters Photo)

If you thought chess is all about outsmarting your opponent who is at the other end of the board, then you are mistaken.

Legendary chess player Viswanathan Anand said physical training is crucial to a chess player. Wondering why?

Anand, speaking to India Today Consulting Editor Sports Boria Majumdar in the New Year episode of 'India Today Inspiration', said he would make sure he went out running or climbing on the morning of almost all of his chess matches.

Anand said getting tired during a long match will spell doom and his focus was always on building stamina.

"The most important thing is stamina. You want to be able to handle 6 hours attention and then your brain not to get tired. When you get tired you tend to forget things and then blunders happen. And also it is no use playing 5 good hours and weakening," Viswanathan Anand told India Today.

"So during all my matches, in the morning, we would meet up, I go for a run, climbing or whatever it is that could really raise the heart rate.

"That was also good because chess builds up tension, you are constantly lost in your thoughts. You get a lot of positive and negative emotions sitting inside and they are knocking around. I wonder sometimes if the physical training you do is to get rid of tension or build your ability to sustain pain.

"You often feel that one hour you spend by yourself, running or lifting weights, is one hour you are not thinking about chess and that's its main value."

Viswanathan Anand also said proper sleep is another important aspect for chess players but he has still not figured out how to get a good night's sleep after a tough loss.

"The other thing is again good sleep. It's hard. The usual routine works well for me. I am quite exhausted by 11-12 every day. And in the morning I get a sound sleep. I wake up at 8 or 9 am in the morning.

"On the days, I lose a game, despite your best efforts that night is going to be miserable because you're going to keep on waking up recollecting the moment of horror where things went wrong. I haven't found a solution for that."

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Stamina most important thing in chess, physical training key to get rid of tension: Viswanathan Anand - India Today

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January 6th, 2020 at 10:44 am

Posted in Chess