07 May 2011

Deliberate Practise

I came across this a couple of days ago and thought it quite relevant to bridge.

We get better through disciplined play against quality opponents. Owning the mistakes, studying them and getting feedback on them from the top players. Only through effort and practice do we improve, practice alone is not enough.


  1. HBJ : So much truth in that, but not always possible to get feedback from top players if you are not part of their inner circle.
    I believe to improve your game you have to be fortunate enough to keep finding top players to be your regular partners....players are willing to pass on their knowledge and expertise.

  2. At least so far as one's performance is limited by not playing to the best of one's abilities -- that is, the making of mistakes where "you know better" --, I think that thoroughly reviewing hand records from a session can be quite useful. You might not identify the situations where a stronger player would have played or bid differently and you do not have access to the expertise of the stronger player, but you will have benefited much just by identifying the situations where you did not play your best. And then thinking about why you made those mistakes and what you can do to prevent them from recurring.

    As one who took a 15 year hiatus from the game, one thing I have discovered is that as one "gets back into the game", some plays that immediately after the hiatus required a lot of thought to get right now are being done right more automatically. This allows the plays that do usurp one's mental energy to be more complicated, sophisticated plays. I bet the status of that progression is a key difference between me and an expert: plays that I find take much thought are routine to an expert, and the expert has not only the special skiils but also the mental energy remaining to tackle the really tough problems.

  3. Thank you for posting the link to this interesting subject!