The Influence of Playing Chess on Football Performance in Children Aged 10-12
Keywords:chess, football, concentration
Some of the most important aspects that chess develops are the ability to concentrate, attention and the ability to anticipate, which are paramount in sport and often lead to winning or losing a match. The purpose of this experimental research is to illustrate how chess helps to develop the skills needed in football. The research was conducted over a period of nine months, and the research participants were 28 children aged 10-12 years from the FC Player football team, with 14 athletes included in the experimental group and another 14 representing the control group. The assessment tests were the following: concentrated attention tests (Kraepelin, Bourdon-Anfimov, Toulouse-Piéron), Psychological Performance Inventory, the Test of Attentional and Interpersonal Style in Football, IQ test - Raven’s Matrices, a Decision-making test and a Technical test. Athletes in the experimental group participated in chess lessons for nine months, while the control group did not benefit from chess training. The chess training programme consisted in learning the basic elements of chess, tactical and strategic exercises to help athletes improve their attention, decision-making, problem-solving and anticipation skills, visualisation exercises, blitz competitions and assessment tests. The chess training programme followed by the experimental group led to better results in most of the tests, compared to the control group, where the improvement of scores was not so visible or even did not exist at all.
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