If you have been playing chess for quite some time now you would realize that you perform better at different times of the day, this is no coincidence. Statistics lead to specific time periods where people get their best results.
There really is an optimal time frame where you can play chess at your maximum potential, I am going to discuss everything I know about it here.
As a chess player here is what I know:
People who play chess at around 6:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. have been observed to perform significantly better than at any time of the day, this is because a human’s energy level peaks at this time of the day. It is not recommended to play around 1:30 p.m.-3:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m-4:00 a.m.
The points that I will be talking about here are a mix of research that I have done regarding scientific ventures as well as my own personal experience, I think there will be a lot of value here. Keep on reading if you are interested in learning more, this has personally helped me after all.
The best time to play chess is around 6:00 a.m. to 1 p.m.
The best time of the day to play is in the morning, people usually have an abundance of energy levels when they have just awoken. Both the mind and the body have gained a significant amount of rest and there is usually no pressure from other personal responsibilities apart from chess.
I have found that the optimal time frame is around 6 a.m – 1 p.m., in this span of time people have the appropriate energy levels and they can focus on solving complicated tasks. People underestimate the amount of problem-solving involved in a simple game of chess, this is actually a crucial factor.
It is exhausting to play a single game seriously (which you would if you want to win) and playing consecutively would bring a decline in performance game after game. Playing around the morning or afternoon will ensure that the individual can endure the loss in energy, this increases their mental endurance.
Mental endurance is important in chess (especially in online chess) since players need to win game after game, even the most skilled players can be beaten once they are exhausted. 6 a.m. – 1 p.m. games ensure that you can bring all of your energy allowing you to perform at your best.
Apart from this, people who play beyond the 1 p.m. time period have had exposure to their personal responsibilities throughout today. They are likely to think of these responsibilities while playing which will distract them from the position at hand, this is not good for performance.
People at the beginning of their day are fresh from sleep and can work their way without too much distraction, this is also one of the reasons why it is best to play at around this time.
It is not ideal to play around 1:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. during the late noon
Some people prefer playing at around 1:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m., probably because this is the time when they can slip a game or two from their busy schedule. Now I won’t say that passion is not important, however, I do believe that this is not the best time to play chess.
Playing a game between 1:30 pm -3:00 pm may not be the best idea, this is the timeframe where people’s performance naturally gets lower due to the so-called afternoon slump. Due to our circadian rhythm we don’t have a lot of energy around this time range, this lowers our overall performance.
It is ideal to play chess between 6:00 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. since this is the time when our energy levels are at their peaks, we can truly focus and bring the best out of us. The afternoon slump is notorious for bringing people’s performance down in general.
It is not only applicable to chess, hospital and corporate workers for example do not perform as well around this time since people are a bit sleepy/tired. It is of course fine to play chess at around this time, but take note that this is not the most optimal time range.
It is not ideal to play chess during the night
Now we need to shift gears, what about the night? It is the time after all where people get free from work and can have a game of good chess before calling it a day. I hate to break it to you but most people who play during the night do not even perform at their decent level.
For most people it is not best to play a game of chess during the night, this is the time when people are tired since they have used their energy throughout the day. Many are also quite sleepy during this time frame so it will not do service for one’s performance.
4 p.m. to 7 p.m. should still be fine, however going beyond this will make people play at a lower level due to the sensation of sleeping. Even titled players go down in efficiency around this time frame, I think that this also applies to most people.
Of course different time zones should also be considered in making this assumption some countries might be able to go beyond this rule but it should be generally accurate.
The ideal timeframe for chess games may vary from individual to individual
This is the thing with questions revolving around a very specific answer, sometimes it can be different depending on various external factors. In other words there could be exceptions, things will be different from case to case and the best time to play might be different for you.
Different individuals will have different time frames depending on their circadian rhythm, although the points above apply to most people, there are definitely outliers out there. It might even be the complete opposite in your case if you belong to the irregular group.
For most people the rules that have been discussed above should apply, however, you should do some personal testing to see which time of the day you seem to perform the best. I think this is one of the most accurate things you can do since the testing will be based on your personal situation.
The best time to play chess is around 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. since higher levels of energy can be used to concentrate on the games, this makes people compete better. Playing chess during the afternoon slump which is around 1:30 p.m. and 3 pm is also not ideal, people get tired around this time.
On the other hand, nighttime games usually lead to broad results unless it is played within 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. which would be fine. Hope you have learned something from this, thank you for reading.