In the third most populous English city in the inland state of southwest Nigeria, chess comes with its unique lifestyle. Oyo state, particularly Ibadan is recognized for its largely populated towns, natural resources, academic institutions.
It still houses one of the very first universities for learning in the country, the University of Ibadan. This university is located in its resourceful capital, Ibadan.
Like Lagos, this city is a bit busy as there are activities and fun places to visit. From the state library, amazing restaurants, car rides to the busy road, something is amazing to see about this city every day. However, you may need to know more about Yoruba than English to blend in with this city.
The vast majority of Ibadan residents have been described to live a pace-setting lifestyle that focuses on their work, business, or school. Some say it is attributed to the state is one of the most exposed to education in Nigeria. The college of Ibadan is the primary research hub for the country and a leading academic institution at the international level,
Its economy is agriculture-based and that is why it has many people who work hard, and the city is well known for its handwork and arts and crafts. International industries like cotton spinning, leatherwork, and wood carving are all well known around their environs.
As you would imagine, they make excellent board games and chess pieces too. These games are incorporated into the curriculum of its school.
However, what makes the small chess communities in Oyo State known on the international scale isn't their skill with the knife and wood; it's their skill on the board.
The state has produced a few notable chess teachers coming from its university and players in the country, and they are no stranger to local or national competitions either. The state library is filled with many of the achievements recorded by chess players.
Chess has been a notable sport for ages. It has been a sport known for decades and has evolved through different centuries, having different primary versions at a time.
Chess can be linked with the Chinese and Persian cultures, which date back centuries. Even the word 'checkmate' is of Persian origin. It was gotten from a Persian word that translates to, 'the king is helpless' or 'the helpless king.'
Education and history lessons aside, chess has come a long way to what it is today gaining ground in different schools.
From the evolution of each piece to their primary positions and notations on the board, whether your primary or secondary interests lie in its history or you are an admirer of the game, you will need a chess tutor or register with a school to learn the ropes.
Chess Lessons with Femi Balogun
Schools in Oyo state, just like Lagos, and with one of the best universities in the country - the University of Ibadan, there is more room for the gathering and development of young budding chess minds and enthusiasts alike.
It takes peculiar and research-driven individuals to be captured or enamoured by chess at young ages, and it takes even more unique individuals to make it their profession.
With the rare educational foundation of this state, you would guess that it would produce good chess players, and it has.
Not just in the state, but it made one of the most notable chess players in the country, Femi Balogun. He has won many local and national chess competitions and is the only African to have participated in the recent World Chess Championship.
Other good chess players worthy of mention include the current female national chess champion, Deborah Akintoye, and the male chess champion, Daniel Anwuli.
Oyo is notorious for doing well in the national chess scene and coming back home with lots of gold medals in their coffers as proof of their hard work and game management. And of course, with such calibre of players, there sure are a lot of places to get chess lessons in Oyo.
The latest national chess competition took place at the National Sports Festival. It is a festival held every few years and hosted in different states across the country each year. This festival offers a range of sporting and gaming competitions, with chess being one of the key games on display.
In April 2021, the sports festival took place in Edo, a state in the southern part of the country. Different chess players assembled from all parts of the country representing various states like Lagos, Abuja, Kaduna, and Jos to participate in the competition.
The Oyo state chess team dominated both the female and male chess events and raked in gold medals at the festival.
Femi is an exceptionally skilful player, with lots of focus and well versed in strategies and several medals under his belt. Like a usual few, he was enamoured by chess at a young age and started playing since then. He has participated in tournaments all over the country and in the world championship.
Today, Femi is still quite the chess player, and in his spare time, he offers public classes in schools to help young intuitive minds become great chess players. Learning with him can be pretty enjoyable but also very demanding.
Due to his relentless practice and aptitude for sports over the years, he can recognize different strategies on board and predict his opponent's moves. This makes him a very patient and thorough teacher doing well in chess education.
The Best Chess Clubs in Oyo to Register With
As a young aspiring newbie in the world of chess, joining a chess club or registering with a college is your best bet. Like apprenticeships, learning on the job in a school beats any other learning experience. As a chess player, your goal should be to get as much hands-on experience as possible. There should be no limit to your quest for knowledge from enrolling in tournaments and watching high-level chess matches.
Chess books and strategy meetings do not trump the usefulness of competing in actual matches and gaining experience.
That being said, books and strategy discussions do have their part in making you a future chess champion. You will need to master chess codes and notations on the go while you take chess lessons. In each chess class, you will get to learn the various pieces and their moves progressions.
Other than applying to a university, registering with a chess club or college can help you get better. Like it is in Lagos, there are several clubs you can register within Ibadan, In these clubs, you will find experts who are good at game management, research, and providing primary skills to improve your game.
These strategy discussions are beneficial before a match to help you recollect the moves you have in your locker and after the game to help you analyze your strength, weaknesses, and mistakes made during the game. These discussions tend to excite and even spawn new ideas and strategies that you could later rely upon.
In reality, to a regular passer-by watching a chess match or attending a chess class, it might seem as dull as counting the square boxes on a ceiling. But for those akin to the game, it is like a blockbuster movie of twists, strategies, betrayals, and executions.
Witnessing intelligent plays, the unique but subtle tension of the word 'check,' and the anxiety right after the 'mate' as the defeated opponent watch across the board in disappointment.
To witness players like this, you should register for a chess club or school and get a chess tutor to run you through the basics and participate in matches that you could quickly learn from.
Oyo state has different chess clubs to offer, for example, the St. Winifred Chess Club, a private chess club that gives beginner and intermediate level chess training from a qualified tutor.
This private club also provides primary and secondary personal coaching services for children and adults. Here, you will learn game management, making it the best place for children seeking motivation. Experts here know how to create a link between courses for better understanding.
There's also the Awesome Chess Club in Ibadan. It is a public chess club that offers a place to learn, relax and have fun playing the game while meeting new people. If you are a fan of public education or getting your primary motivation from public places, then this is for you.
How a Superprof Tutor Can Help You Become a Professional Chess Player
Learning with online tutors via webcam has become even more mainstream in the past months due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
It is getting easier and easier to get various lectures and teaching sessions online with the right tools like a webcam. Like other disciplines of learning, teaching chess online isn't a new concept. There are different online chess tutors and chess classes up for imparting knowledge to beginners of the chess game.
Superprof offers a bunch of professional chess players and tutors for learning. Many chess players around the world signed up on the platform to offer tutoring services to others.
There are chess teachers for various levels located across different parts of Nigeria, including Oyo State. Their multiple details, including qualifications and teaching methods, are on display for interested students to choose which would best suit their needs.
For every tutor in Ibadan and other parts of the state, you could identify to what extent their time with chess has been, which tournaments they have participated in, and even their exact rating from reviews and feedbacks given by students from their online profile.
Superprof teachers also offer their first hour of lessons free and can help you save the amount you would typically spend on the total hours of study.
This free hour with your tutor can be online or in-person, and it gives room for additional questions, tips, and perhaps a match that will provide you with a much more satisfying study experience.
You can have your tutor teach you in English, Yoruba, or any other primary language that works for you.
Additionally, on each tutor's page, beyond their academic qualifications, students can comment and provide reviews on how their chess lessons have been going. They narrate their experiences with the tutor, and other students will see the attributes of every teacher on the Superprof site.
When deciding on your chess tutor in Ibadan or other parts of Oyo, these reviews and years of experience come in very handy and make your decision-making process less challenging.
So if you aspire to be a good chess player and you require a tutor or chess lessons near you, you can count on applying to the university, any school, or count on Superprof!
Chess, over the years, has and will always have its place as one of the world's most sophisticated and intuitive board games for students.
There are schools in Nigeria that have incorporated into their study curriculum. It provides an aura of focus, determination, strategy, and skill to those who conquer the board.
As a fledgling in the world of chess, looking to take chess lessons in Oyo, you have different study materials on the internet and a wide range of clubs at your disposal to become a great chess player in no time.
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