u3a Chess Network – Chess can be enjoyable (and good for you)
After two successful u3a Zoom meetings, support has been gathered from u3a members
representing all parts of the UK for the start of the u3a CHESS NETWORK. The Network aims to promote the study and playing of Chess in the u3a – both in local u3as and nationally on web-sites and Zoom, etc.
Chess, unlike Bridge, has never flourished in u3a – probably because it has the reputation of being a difficult, aggressive, complex game, played in silence. On the contrary the rules are straightforward and easy to grasp and after a short while interesting, thought-provoking games can be played. Also, we have shown in the last few years that a Chess Club can be sociable, interactive and co-operative – where the intention is to explore the theory and play well but also to enjoy playing the game and meeting other people. There is little doubt that playing a game like Chess improves concentration, memory, decision-making and spatial comprehension – so a real advantage for all of us in u3a!!
In September, we are starting a nation-wide u3a Chess League which will be available to all members of all abilities from learners to experts.
The objectives of the new u3a Chess Network are:
– to help and encourage new Chess Clubs; (one of the most common questions we have received has been `how do I start a Chess Club?`)
– to collect, and make readily available, information relevant to u3a chess players and
– to encourage Zoom or on-line u3a Chess groups or leagues; (another typical complaint to the Subject Advisors is that there are no u3a chess groups in my area!).
It is now possible to join the u3a CHESS NETWORK by going to: www.u3aChessNetwork.org.uk – where it is also possible to register for the u3a Chess League starting in September. We need as much publicity and support as we can obtain to help give this initiative a strong start.
David Castle, Chess Subject Adviser