Q. How many coaches can we expect to turn up to teach our group?
A. Once we have carried out a pilot, we can normally judge how many team members to send. Normally you will receive one primary coach, and sometimes an assistant too. With larger numbers, or where a group needs to be split to cater for more advanced learners, we may send two primary coaches and an assistant.
Q. Why wouldn’t we employ a grandmaster to come in and provide the lessons instead of club and county players?
A. You might experience availability issues due to their busy schedules and secondly, because they would teach at a much higher level; a level that may be too difficult for beginners or even keen home players to follow.
Q. Is it expensive?
A. No. For non-businesses, we typically charge from £4.00 per hour (per student) depending on numbers, frequency of sessions, travel time and location.
Q. Will I / my child / our group become very good, very quickly?
A. Yes. But realistically, you will not become a grand master, or even club player overnight. How good anybody becomes depends on their ability to retain what is being taught, practice and natural talent. However, we guarantee that no matter what your level, every person we teach will become instantly better and more knowledgeable within a few sessions.
Q. How long will it take me to reach an acceptable club level?
A. Again, as previously answered, this depends on various factors. A student who is able to retain most of what is being taught and practice regularly will make significant strides towards being of acceptable club level standard in less than a year. However, we recommend a blend of group sessions and personal one to one training to actually achieve this target.
Q. Who is the best coach to choose?
A. LearnChess coaches are all trained to teach effectively and within the framework the company sets out for all members of the team. Every one of our coaches will provide sessions that are thought provoking, challenging, fun and enjoyable. Our aim is to not only teach you how to play chess properly, but to invigorate your mind, leaving you feeling energised, full of confidence to tackle the most difficult problems, and with some fresh ideas to help you make decisions quickly and more easily.
Q. Do you just teach on chess boards alone?
A. No. We use fully interactive computer equipment, projecting images onto a screen to demonstrate moves and positions. We also use traditional boards and pieces, including clocks for timed games, motivational stickers for children, medals and trophies for winners, runners up and most improved player(s) and goodie bags for end of term prizes in schools.
Q. What type of subjects would you discuss in a Team Engagement Day for our company?
A. First of all, we will be teaching you how to play chess, but showing how each plan on the chessboard corresponds to certain business situations. Following this, we would split you into certain groups (dependant on the structure of your company) and from this see how you work as a team in making decisions about where to go and what to do on the chessboard. It is always interesting to see who is more attacking by nature, and who is naturally more defensive and cautious. All this builds up a picture of the true characters of your employees and how they fit into your business.
Q. What if there is somebody that already plays quite a lot of chess in our organisation?
A. We would need to find out what level they are at. We would know by asking a few questions whether it was still suitable for them to participate. In this situation, we would suggest (if they were up to speed) that they join us in helping organise the session, knowing how it would benefit fellow employees. Naturally, we wouldn’t be expecting them to do everything, just simply put some building blocks in place for our visit.
Q. Chess is for children and older people and a bit boring. Correct?
A. No, and typical of the misconceptions we receive.
With millions of people playing on line and more people than ever getting involved with the mind sport, there has been resurgence in the game, and this is mainly because of the benefits of chess being good for mental health. Exercising the mind is just as important as exercise for the body, and there is no better tool than learning how to master the chess board. In fact, many games now played on the internet are very quick, with time limits set at 5 minutes each way for an entire game!
Q. How do you pay?
A. Once we have established your individual or group requirements, we invoice for our sessions a term or quarter in advance and for individuals when you book a lesson.
Q. What sort of events do you hold?
A. We hold various events across the calendar year. Mainly internal school championships, but we will soon be providing on-line tournaments too. We also organise School Enrichment Days, Holiday Camps; Company Engagement Days at corporate venues such as curry houses, Chess Breakfast Events and evening classes for adults.