Garry Kasparov MasterClass Review:
Will it Improve Your Chess Game?
Last updated on: July 18, 2023, Written by:
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There has never been a better time to be alive for chess players, chess hobbyists, or anyone who appreciates the game of chess. In the past, if you wanted to improve your chess game, your only option was to read chess books or the occasional chess journal.
Today, we are fortunate to have a plethora of chess resources at our fingertips, particularly in the realm of online chess tutoring courses. The beauty of online courses is that they allow you to learn chess at your own pace. However, before you invest in any online chess course, you must first ensure that the online chess class caters to your needs.
That’s because online chess courses tend to take different approaches, meaning a particular chess class might be more suitable for a specific audience or specific learning style. So, how does the Garry Kasparov Chess MasterClass measure up? We will be looking at that and more in this detailed Garry Kasparov MasterClass review.
Garry Kasparov’s MasterClass Overview
The ‘Garry Kasparov Teaches Chess’ MasterClass offers chess enthusiasts a unique opportunity to have an inside look at the mind of a chess grandmaster. Gary Kasparov teaches you how he thinks in any situation, which ultimately helps chess players to develop a deeper understanding of the game and improve their strategic decision-making abilities.
Garry Kasparov MasterClass Review Summary
|🥇 Category of class:
|Arts & Entertainment
|📈 Suits best for:
|Chess enthusiasts of around 1000 ELO
|7 hours 20 minutes
|⏳ Avg. Lesson Duration
|🛍️ Course Essentials:
|Your preferred choice of chess boards or chess sets, notebook and pen, and chess clock (optional)
|💼 Complementary material:
|86-page downloadable workbook
|📚 No. of Lessons:
|🛒 Payment options:
|Individual / Duo / Family
|10 – 20 $ (billed annually)
|🔄 Refund policy:
|30-day satisfaction guarantee
|🎁 Free trial:
Key Skills You’ll Learn
- Chess fundamentals;
- Practical knowledge of different techniques and chess tactics – double attacks, winning trades, discovered attacks, skewers, and more;
- How to analyze your own games;
- Nuances of the different aspects of the game of chess;
- Theory application;
- Mental toughness, decision-making, and other “soft skills” from a world chess champion.
Who is Garry Kasparov’s MasterClass for
The Garry Kasparov MasterClass is for anyone who loves or appreciates the game of chess. Therefore, anyone from beginner chess players and mid-level players to advanced chess players will find Garry’s MasterClass to be a worthwhile investment. Although players of around 1000 ELO will find the most value from Garry’s chess lessons.
However, if you’re more of a hands-on learner, you might find this chess masterclass to not be up your alley since it does not offer the same level of interactivity the way platforms such as Chessable, Forward Chess, and Decode Chess do. Still, none of them offer lessons from one of the best chess players of all time.
Total score: 9.0
In This Garry Kasparov’s MasterClass
Review, You’ll Learn
Garry Kasparov MasterClass Instructor Review
About Garry Kasparov
Garry Kasparov is renowned as one of the best chess players in history. Having started playing chess at the age of six, this chess grandmaster has amassed a remarkable array of accomplishments within the chess world.
Notably, he clinched his first world championship title at the age of 22, earning the distinction of being the youngest-ever world champion. Moreover, Garry held the world record for the highest ELO rating for nearly 15 years, an achievement that was eventually surpassed by another chess player, one of his own protégés, Magnus Carlsen, in 2013.
Kasparov’s immense experience playing chess at the very highest level makes him one of the best resources for people keen on their chess game improvement.
Garry Kasparov as an Instructor
Being a personal and flexible game, many chess players often have their own interpretation of the game of chess. That’s why, especially if you’re a beginner chess player, you should want to learn chess from someone who has played chess against any conceivable style.
That’s what you get with Garry Kasparov, arguably the greatest chess player of all time, with nearly 2500 professional chess matches to his name. This experience allows the incredibly charming Garry to break down different chess theories, complex concepts, and tactics in a way that is easy to understand.
Moreover, Kasparov’s class is structured thoughtfully, touching on various aspects of the game to ensure that advanced players also have their fix. All in all, Garry Kasparov’s passion for chess, combined with his natural abilities as a tutor, make him a treat to listen to for the 7-hour duration of his chess masterclass.
Since 2015, MasterClass brings 180+ online classes from top-tier instructors in almost any field. It includes pre-recorded video lessons from MasterClass celebrity teachers such as Richard Branson, Martin Scorsese, Aaron Sorkin, Gordon Ramsay, and many others.
The video quality equals Hollywood movies, and every MasterClass course is carefully structured. But that’s not all. There are interactive assignments, MasterClass community activities, and an ever-growing video library to enjoy. The sheer amount of content can make it hard to begin. Cursums will help you to choose wisely.
Uniqueness and Freshness of the Content
While it’s true that there are other online courses available for chess players to improve their game, how many of those courses are taught by a chess grandmaster?
This is what makes the Garry Kasparov MasterClass course truly unique. It is the only recorded course where Garry goes all-in to share his knowledge through carefully structured video lessons. Each specific topic he has chosen for the chess lessons holds immense importance in the overall game.
Moreover, the attention to detail showcased in each Garry Kasparov chess lesson is highly unlikely to be matched by other courses. By choosing the Garry Kasparov course, you can save yourself hundreds of hours of research, trying to compile unrelated chess lessons from various sources.
It’s also worth noting that, in addition to receiving over 7 hours of coaching from the grandmaster, enrolling Garry Kasparov’s MasterClass gives you access to all other MasterClass courses, from learning poker bluffs with Daniel Negreanu to basketball player Stephen Curry’s lessons on defense. Now, that’s incredible value for your investment..
Gary Kasparov MasterClass Content and Structure Review
With a runtime of 7 hours and 20 minutes, the Garry Kasparov MasterClass is lenghtier than many other MasterClasses. It consists of 29 video lessons, which can be categorized into 3 major categories; the middle game, the end game, and openings.
The longest of the video lessons is a 53-minute simulation study where you watch Kasparov play chess against 3 players of different skill levels. Given the vast amount of knowledge presented, I highly recommend taking your time to fully absorb and digest the material covered in this chess course.
The Middle Game
1-10 Lessons Summary
As is the case with all other MasterClasses, the very first lesson of the Kasparov Masterclass is an introduction to the course. Here, Kasparov introduces us to his teaching style, drawing comparisons to his dynamic and sometimes even aggressive playing style. Gary effectively sets the tone, capturing the essence of the course.
Lesson 2, titled Garry’s Chess Fundamentals, marks the beginning of Kasparov’s dissection of the game. He delves into the distinction between tactics and strategies, emphasizing the significant role personalization plays in chess. Your proficiency as a chess player is often tied to staying true to your own identity.
These video lessons also cover other vital themes, such as pattern recognition, timing, and the value of using a physical chess set to practice positions, as the dynamics of the game aren’t always as clear when moving chess pieces on a computer.
Chapters 3 to 10 delve into a range of tactics employed in the middle game. Topics explored include double attacks, skewers, discovered attacks, pins, deflections/attacks, and overloads. In these lessons, you’ll learn how to employ these chess tactics both offensively and defensively to secure a stronger position.
12-14, and 23 Lessons Summary
In lessons 12 to 14 Kasparov teaches specific strategies for endgames. He also explains why mastering endgame tactics will arguably have the most significant impact on your chess game. He also references specific games that he feels had spectacular endgame strategies.
Lesson 23 is an endgame case study with a focus on pawn endgames. Here, you learn why Garry loves pawn endgames despite many people finding them boring.
15-17, and 22 Lessons Summary
In lessons 15 to 17, we delve deeper into Kasparov’s mindset when it comes to playing openings. Garry highlights the individuality of each chess player and offers one of the most valuable pieces of advice for improving your chess game: choosing openings that align with your psychological disposition.
Kasparov then uses lesson 22 as a case study for openings. Here, the former world chess champion dissects one of his most famous historical games, highlighting both the strengths and weaknesses of his opening tactics. This lesson offers invaluable insights into the thought process of an advanced player when approaching the opening phase.
18-21 Lessons Summary
In lesson 18 of Kasparov’s MasterClass, we get to watch Garry play chess against three players of different skill levels simultaneously. Later lessons 19 to 21 are dedicated to analyzing each game, highlighting the pros and cons of each chess player.
24-29 Lessons Summary
In these chess lessons, we get to have an inside look at the mind of a chess grandmaster. Garry Kasparov takes us on a captivating journey through his personal experiences in the game of chess and his evolution as a chess player. He places particular emphasis on the indispensable role of mental toughness in chess, highlighting how it often distinguishes between average and exceptional chess players.
As the culmination of his chess course, Kasparov concludes with an analysis of one of his memorable defeats, sharing the tactics he would employ if faced with the same game today.
Fast-Track Lesson Plan
I highly recommend watching every lesson of the Garry Kasparov MasterClass, as each chapter is filled to the brim with valuable insights, encompassing chess theories and practical knowledge. But if you are in a hurry, below is a list of the most important lessons. It all amounts to 4 hours, 31 minutes and 38 seconds.
|Garry’s Chess Fundamentals
|Double Attacks – Part 1
|Double Attacks – Part 2
|Endgames – Part 1
|Endgames – Part 2
|Endgames – Part 3
|Openings – Part 1
|Openings – Part 2
|Openings – Part 3
|How to Analyze
Garry Kasparov MasterClass Student Engagement and Retention
The Garry Kasparov MasterClass is tastefully done, boasting stunning visuals and the high production value that has become synonymous with MasterClass courses. Kasparov himself possesses an undeniable charm, which he effortlessly translates into his delivery, resulting in a truly captivating chess MasterClass that leaves you craving for more after each lesson.
Furthermore, Garry Kasparov excels at explaining complex concepts in a manner that is easily comprehensible for beginner chess players, without oversimplifying the content for advanced players.
My Personal Experience with the Garry Kasparov MasterClass
Things I Liked About the Garry Kasparov MasterClass
Great Course for All Skill Levels
Creating a chess masterclass can’t be easy due to the wide discrepancy in skill levels among chess players. However, Garry is able to successfully cater to chess players of all skill levels in his MasterClass. Whether you’re a beginner looking to grasp the fundamentals or an advanced player seeking to enhance your strategic thinking, Garry’s approach ensures that everyone can benefit from his teachings.
Learning Chess from a Former World Champion
There’s something about learning chess from a former world chess champion like Garry Kasparov that adds an unparalleled level of prestige and expertise to the experience. His deep understanding of the game, honed through years of top-level competition, allows him to share unique insights, tactics, and specific strategies that go beyond what you would typically find in other chess courses.
Anecdotes from Famous Historical Games
Chess enthusiasts are always raving about certain games that have made significant impacts on the history of chess. One of the standout pros of the Garry Kasparov MasterClass is the inclusion of anecdotes and analysis from famous historical games. As a former world champion, Kasparov has been a part of many legendary encounters and iconic matches.
Through his MasterClass, he shares captivating stories, strategies, and pivotal moments from these games, offering a deeper understanding of chess history and allowing students to learn from the brilliance of past grandmasters.
What I Didn’t Like About the Garry Kasparov MasterClass
You Must Already Know the Basics
While I’ve said that the Garry Kasparov MasterClass is suitable for chess players of all skill levels, Garry assumes that you already know the bare minimum basics, meaning he doesn’t spend any time covering the fundamental rules and concepts of chess. As such, if you’re a complete beginner, you should consider familiarizing yourself with the basic rules and concepts of chess before diving into the Garry Kasparov MasterClass.
Is the Garry Kasparov MasterClass Worth the Money
Cost of Garry Kasparov’s MasterClass
As with all other MasterClass courses, the Garry Kasparov MasterClass subscription costs from $10 per month. The good news is that it earns you an automatic MasterClass membership. With a MasterClass subscription, you will have access to over 180 courses in the MasterClass library, which offers more sport-specific lessons for better poker tactics in Phil Ivey’s MasterClass or delving deeper into athletes’ winning mindset with F1 champion Lewis Hamilton.
|Individual (one device)
|$10 per month
|Duo (two devices)
|$15 per month
|Family (six devices)
|$20 per month
Does the Class Keep Its Promises?
The Garry Kasparov MasterClass does keep its promises. I got out of the class with a deepened understanding of chess, improved strategic thinking, and a newfound appreciation for the game. The course delivers on its commitment to provide valuable insights and techniques from one of the greatest chess players in history.
Garry Kasparov’s engaging teaching style, combined with well-structured lessons and comprehensive content, ensures that students gain practical knowledge and skills to enhance their chess game.
Garry Kasparov MasterClass: What Others Have Said
You should always check what people who have already taken the Garry Kasparov MasterClass have to say. Many students and chess enthusiasts have praised the course for its exceptional quality and production value. They highlight Garry Kasparov’s expertise, engaging teaching style, and excellent choice of topics. Below are some of the masterclass reviews I found on Reddit.
-“So, I do think it’s worth the price. It’s definitely targeted to middle players, which makes sense to me. Beginners will not really get enough out of GK, and targeting a video series to high-level players exclusively is not going to get you enough sales to make it worthwhile. So, in general, I think they’ve done a agood job at presenting material that will not bore experienced players while not completely befuddling mid-level players.”
-“Quite good. Kasparov is easy to understand and the videos are clear and high quality. Garry makes all the moves on a achess board and they’re all mirrored on a typical computer board next to the video. Only minor complaint is that they are sometimes inconsistent about which side of the board they show yiu when illiustrating the postitions, but it’s good practise for me to have to analyze from both sides so I didn’t really mind.”
Essentials Used in the Garry Kasparov MasterClass
- The preferred choice of chess boards or chess sets
- Computer or mobile device
- Notebook and pen
- Chess clock (optional)
Alternatives to Garry Kasparov’s MasterClass
Other Arts & Entertainment Courses Available on MasterClass
- Lewis Hamilton teaches a Winning Mindset
- Bill Nye Teaches Science and Problem-Solving
- Terence Tao Teaches Mathematical Thinking
- Nancy Cartwright teaches Voice Acting
- David Lynch teaches Creativity and Film
- Jeff Koons teaches Art and Creativity
Alternatives to MasterClass
Udemy is one of the most popular online learning providers, with a massive choice of various classes. The learning platform covers a range of chess courses for beginner and advanced learners.
Coursera is another big name in the online courses market, with a lot to offer in chess and game-related fields. It’s a great way to expand your knowledge of the field without spending much money on online learning.
Skillshare focuses on practical course es, with educational videos substituting expensive college courses. The aim is to provide users with marketable skills for finding a job. There are some courses related to Chess and strategic thinking as well.
Q&A about Garry Kasparov’s MasterClass
I’ve spent the last ten years passionately studying various online learning platforms. Udemy, MasterClass, Coursera, and Skillshare are the main ones, but I review lesser-known study tools as well. I test and analyze each course and lesson thoroughly before sharing my research.