Chess Improvement Club is a project by Mai Hao Da consulting (Shenzhen) Co. LTD. Hoda Mazloomian is the founder and CEO.

DB: 您什么时候开始接触象棋?为什么会决定成立象棋俱乐部? What is your history with chess and why did you decide to start the club?

五岁的时候,父亲教会我一些象棋的基本玩法,然后我便经常被他无情地击败!接下去的几年,我也会跟朋友一起下象棋,但都是随便玩玩而已。1997年,我加入芝加哥的国际象棋俱乐部,并参加锦标赛,以此来提高我的象棋水平。另外,我也会买关于国际象棋的书籍,尽可能从里面学习更多东西。 对我来说,学习象棋最糟糕的方式,估计就是在基础薄弱的时候,总是被父亲杀得片甲不留。因为这种经历会让输的人总是处于防守的位置。这些年,在象棋比赛中战胜别人会给我带来信心,驱走我童年时的阴影。所以,我总是在寻找最佳的提高象棋水平的方法。这也是为什么我会成立“象棋水平提高俱乐部”。我喜欢象棋这种娱乐方式,它能将不同文化和背景的人都聚集在一起。
I was taught how to play the game by my father at age five, who showed me the basic moves and proceeded to beat me mercilessly! Ithen played casually for years with friends but not seriously. When I was in Chicago 1997, I decided to improve my chess by going to a chess club and attending tournaments. I also bought some chess books and tried to learn as much as I could. Getting beaten by your father without an adequate grounding is probably the worst way to learn chess. It makes you a defensive player and I have sought over the years to plug gaps in my chess education with partial success. So I have always been curious about the best methodology for improving your chess. That is why the club is called ” Chess Improvement Club”. I also enjoy the social aspect of chess that unites people of so many diverse cultures and backgrounds in a shared social activity.

DB: 这个俱乐部的理念是什么? What is the philosophy of the club?

成立这个俱乐部的初衷就是希望所有人都能互帮互助,共同提高象棋水平。这里是包容且多样化的,我们的成员包括来自世界各地的人,男性和女性,成年人,青少年和儿童。我们还特别鼓励女性加入俱乐部,因为从世界各地的国际象棋社区的情况来看,女性象棋玩家是很少的。我们有非常厉害的象棋玩家,但我们关注的不只是能力,更多的是“提高能力”。自2017年8月成立俱乐部以来,许多成员在象棋水平上都取得了明显进步,这是值得庆祝的。
The philosophy of the club is for each member to support and in turn be supported by other members on their path to chess improvement. We encourage having a club that is as diverse of possible. Our membership consists of people from several countries of the world, men and women, adults, teens and children. We especially encourage women to join since they are generally underrepresented in chess communities around the world. We do not focus on ability alone, although we have several very strong players. We focus more in Improvement. Since August 2017 when this club was founded many of our players have shown notable improvement and that is the main thing we celebrate in our club.

DB: 要加入俱乐部是否必须有一定基础? Do you have to know how to play to join?

没有人是能跳开入门新手就起步的。 我们鼓励初学者在加入俱乐部前先学习基本规则,一旦成为我们的成员,不管水平如何,我们都会支持并帮助他们提高国际象棋水平。我们的主要活动就是每周五由水平高的象棋玩家帮助训练没有太多经验的成员,以提高新手们的能力。除了非正式的友谊训练之外,我们还有一支教练团队,他们会收取合理的费用,给专门来学习象棋的成员传授专业技能。
No one is excluded for being a beginner. We encourage potential members to learn the basic rules before joining our club but regardless we will support whoever joins to improve their chess. On any given Friday, which is our main event of the week, you would see several stronger members happily helping more inexperience players. Apart from these informal friendly coaching,we also have a team of coaches that can hone in the skills of more serious students of Chess for a reasonable fee.

DB: 您认为象棋能给人带来什么好处? What do you consider to be some of the benefits of playing chess?

学习和玩象棋这类游戏会刺激树突的生长,从而刺激大脑神经,提高应激速度和做出更高效的反应。国际象棋还能锻炼人的左右脑,当左脑的分析能力和右脑的创造力和直觉同时被刺激时,问题就能在顷刻间迎刃而解了。
Learning and playing a game like chess actually stimulates the growth of dendrites, which in turn increases the speed and improves the quality of neural communication throughout your brain. Chess also exercises both sides of the Brain, The Analytical left side and the creative and intuitive right side are both stimulated allowing for the development of creative problem solving in the break.

此外,它还能有效预防阿尔茨海默病。爱因斯坦医学院对488名老年人进行研究,结果表明,下棋可刺激大脑运作,显著降低患老年痴呆症的风险。所以要保持大脑正常运转,降低患病的风险,就应多参加像下象棋这样的活动。
Additionally, it can help prevent Alzheimer’s disease. A medical study involving 488 seniors by the Albert Einstein College of Medicine shows that playing chess, which stimulates brain function, measurably decreases the risk of dementia and combats its symptoms. Instead of letting the brain deteriorate, keeping the brain functioning at a normal rate, especially with a mind exercising activity like chess, will reduce your risk for Alzheimer’s disease.

最后,它提高儿童解决问题的能力:从小就接触国际象棋的孩子在未来几年可能会在学校中取得更好的成绩。研究表明,玩象棋可以改善孩子的思维角度和解决问题的能力。
Lastly, it increases problem solving ability in Children: A child who is introduced to chess at a young age is likely to do better in school for years to come. Research shows that playing chess improves a child’s thinking and problem-solving.

文献网站 Source: http://www.onlinepsychologydegree.net/2012/09/24/7-surprising-health-benefits-of-playing-chess/

DB: 俱乐部规模发展迅猛,目前已经有310名成员,您是否有打算继续扩大规模? The club has rapidly grown, with 310 members at present. Do you have plans to expand the club further?

2017年8月成立这家俱乐部时,只有45位成员,而现在,我们的成员数骤增到319人。这得益于规范化的成员挑选原则和我们对成员的用心。让每个成员都开心,并且营造温馨、团结的氛围一直是我们努力的方向。 我们也有明确的计划,不仅要扩增成员,还要增加向会员提供的服务和活动。其中包括:组织锦标赛和象棋特级大师车轮赛,提供正式的训练课程,寻找赞助商,以帮助俱乐部在未来几年发展壮大。
Since the club was formed in August 2017, it has rapidly grown from 45 members to the current 319 players. This is due to a disciplined regiment of recruitment and retention of members. Player satisfaction and creating a supportive, warm and collegiate atmosphere has been our central goal. We also have clear plans to expand not only the membership, but the scope of services and activities offered to our members. These include: organising tournaments and grandmaster simultaneous exhibitions, providing formal coaching lessons and attracting sponsors who would help the Chess Improvement Club brand to grow and prosper in the years to come.

DB: 有人认为厉害的象棋玩家都有独特的棋风或个性。这是真的吗? Some people say that good chess players have a distinguishable style or “personality” when they play. Do you believe this to be true?

我认为所有的棋手都有某种风格,这似乎与他们的个性有着千丝万缕的联系。世界冠军MikhailTal(1960-1961年),擅长自杀式的进攻玩法。然而Tigran Petrosian(1963 – 1966)则是防守天才。虽然无法确切了解人格和心理对象棋玩家的影响,但可以肯定的是,像Magnus Carlson这样的精英棋手,和普通棋手相比,都有自己明确的风格偏好。
I think it is true to say all Chess players have a certain style which seems to be inextricably intertwined with their personality. The world Champion MikhailTal (1960-1961) for example, was a genius at sacrificial play and attack. Tigran Petrosian (1963- 1966 ) however, will always be remembered as a defensive prodigy. Although you cannot entirely rule out the influence of personality and psychological make up, we can say with some degree of accuracy, that today’s elite Chess players like the current world Champion Magnus Carlson, seek to be universal players, without a clearly identifiable style preference.

DB: 下象棋和经营俱乐部的过程中,您感受和领悟到了什么? What has your experience running the club and playing chess taught you about people?

自从我开始学象棋,并尝试经营象棋俱乐部,我学会承担更多责任,并收获许多经验和教训。首先,我学会一步一步的完成目标,无论感受如何,都要坚持原则,专注去做必要的事情,这样才能在稳定和谐中发展俱乐部。第二,因为象棋,我坚信一切皆有可能。在棋盘上,多少次我都身临绝境,最后却又绝处逢生。又有多少次,我因得意而输掉看似“赢”的比赛。象棋带给我最大的感受就是它能为社会带来正能量;它可以将不同国家,不同文化,不同的年龄、性别和语言的人紧密联结在一起,为他们架起友谊之桥。
I have learned many lessons since I have embarked on my chess journey and attempt to run the Chess Improvement Club as efficiently as humanly possible given my many other responsibilities. First, I have learned to follow a vision through thick and thin and no matter what I am feeling on the day, keep the discipline and focus needed to do what is necessary to help the club grow in a healthy and harmonious manner. Secondly, chess has itself helped me to believe that anything is possible. How often I felt a game lost but managed to find a continuation that lead to victory? Conversely, very frequently I lost a “won” game by failing to capitalise on early gains. My most powerful observation, however, has been that chess can be a force for social good; that it can bring a multiculturally diverse group of people with many backgrounds, ages and languages and from both sexes in harmony and friendship.

Website: https://szchessclub.github.io/mysite/
WeChat: HodaMazloomian

9 COMMENTS

  1. Great interview. I was reminded of all the benefits of chess. This club is a wonder brain builder, but a confidence booster, and increasing positive social interaction and stronger cultural awareness.

  2. I was new in chess last year, Hoda also taught me how to play. Really thanks! Best wishes!