FIDE training games

After months of testing with hundreds of volunteers around the world, FIDE Innovations is proud to present: TrainingGames™.

Online vs. over-the-board

Online chess is booming. We can play as many bullet, blitz and rapid games and tournaments as we like on lichess,, chess24, etc. On all these platforms, we get a rating for each discipline, so we can monitor our progress.

Still, most chess players will agree that online chess is not a substitution for a proper, serious game, played with a slower time control on a real board, with beautiful wooden pieces and an opponent sitting in front of you.

Sadly, this is currently not possible at chess clubs or tournaments, except for the world’s elite. However, even some of the strictest lockdowns in the world today still allow one person to visit another household. This is all that is needed for a serious, competitive over-the-board training game between two chess friends.

Raising the stakes

TrainingGames™ was developed to allow FIDE members around the world to raise the stakes of their training games. Since I was one of the testers, I will use my own personal experience to explain the idea.

How does it work?

Yesterday, my friend Feike Liefrink came to visit me and we enjoyed a serious game of classical chess together. I won the game. Subsequently, I opened my personal FIDE-webpage and entered the result. Feike received a notification, asking him to confirm my win against him. After Feike confirmed, the result appeared in both our training game results and our training ratings were adjusted accordingly.

Screenshot of a personal FIDE-webpage with functional TrainingGames (beta-version).

Since this was already my tenth training game, my training rating is becoming a good indicator of my recent form. By winning my game yesterday, my training rating went up from 1906 to 1924.

By contrast, my standard FIDE rating has not moved since April 2020.

Future plans

For now, because of the ongoing global pandemic, every FIDE member will be allowed to enter the result of just one training game per week. This rule is in place so as to discourage people from playing too many over-the-board games, with too many different people, too frequently. In the future, it will be possible to enter results more frequently.

FIDE president Arkady Dvorkovich: “We started the TrainingGames project, because we wanted chess to do its part in fighting the current global crisis, by helping to reduce negative effects of lockdown, such as loneliness and depression.

But it is here to stay! As international chess federation, we are committed to offering all our members this service: the possibility to challenge each other for a serious game of chess, with a result that counts.

Athletes around the world use apps like STRAVA for comparing their performance, now chess players have TrainingGames!”

Magnus Carlsen vs. Anish Giri We are delighted to announce that World Champion Magnus Carlsen and his close rival Anish Giri will officially launch the website functionality and app* for the general public, by playing their first FIDE training game against each other, on Saturday1 May 2021, starting at 20h GMT, broadcast by all major chess websites.

Anish Giri and Magnus Carlsen to play the inaugural FIDE training game (picture: Lennart Ootes | Grand Chess Tour)

From then onwards: raise the stakes by playing FIDE TrainingGames™!

Derk Dekker – FIDE Innovations

* Download the free TrainingGames™ app for tablet or smart phone from Google Play or Apple App Store.