Welcome to Dojo 3.0!

Dojo Digest Vol 8 • May 1, 2024
We launched the training program 2 years ago with a Google doc and a couple of paper clips. Since then, we've made great technical improvements and learned a lot about what chess improvement involves across the rating spectrum. While we are constantly improving the site, the release of 3.0 gave us the opportunity to revamp our program using the experience of the last 2 years. Here are just some of the biggest changes we've launched:
  • Tactics Tests
  • Tactics Rating & Player Dashboard
  • 3.0 Training Program
  • Revamped Game Editor & Database
  • Sensei Profile Review
  • Clubs
Learn more below, or sign up now to check it out for yourself! Use code DOJO30 at checkout for 30% off your first month.

Tactics Tests - We've developed a new style of tactics test! In normal tactics trainers, you make your move and the computer plays a single line for your opponent. This can lead to bad habits, as you don't always have to calculate all of your opponent's resources. In the Dojo tests, you input moves for both you and your opponent, and you're graded both on the mainline and on variations:

Picture of scoring system in Dojo tactics test

In this example, we found the mainline but missed the opponent's defense 18...Rac8 and its refutation, leading to a score of 7/11.

All test problems are hand-picked by one of the Dojo senseis, and the solutions are lightly annotated. After you've completed a test, you can see how you stack up against the rest of the Dojo or against just a few cohorts:

Graph of Dojo tactics test results

Data for the first 1500-2000 test. In this chart, the x-axis is the score on the test and the y-axis is the calculated rating for the test. Different colors represent different cohorts.

The tests are available here for 1500+, but we plan to expand to all rating levels by the end of the month. Free users can access the first test in their rating section as well.

Tactics Rating & Player Dashboard - We're using our new tests, along with some other key metrics, to give everyone a Dojo Tactics Rating. This will allow players to see how strong they are – tactically – relative to their cohort. Your tactics rating can be found on the ratings tab of your profile. Further down the line, we have plans to add similar Dojo Strategy and Dojo Endgame Ratings. All of these ratings will live in a player's dashboard, where you can see all key metrics at a glance.

3.0 Training Program - We evaluated feedback from users, performed statistical analysis (which tasks produce the strongest gains?), argued amongst each other and used all this information to dial in the Training Program requirements across the Dojo. As always, the Training Program can be viewed under your profile.

Revamped Game Editor & Database - Our annotated games database has improved tremendously since Dojo 2.0. Even old-timer Sensei Kraai prefers it to Chessbase! Here are some of the features we've added:
  • Annotate your games in unlisted mode. When unlisted, you can share your games via the URL, but otherwise it won't appear on the site. This lets you work on your annotations and get feedback, then publish to the rest of the Dojo when ready.
  • Games are now viewable by users who don't have a Dojo account, so you can share your annotations with your friends or coach without having to force them to sign up.
  • You can now comment on individual moves in other users' games, and other users can reply to your comments in a thread.
  • Picture of game comments
  • Completely customizable keyboard shortcuts! Want to click through another user's game, comment on a move and return back to clicking through the game? Set your keyboard shortcuts, and you can do that without ever touching your mouse. Perfect for power users.
  • Search for annotated games in the database by position. You can also subscribe to a position in order to get notified whenever a game is published containing that position. You can even set a rating range on your subscription!
  • Most people play too quickly! Get insights into your time usage with our clock graphs.
  • Picture of clock usage graph
  • An all-new set of board themes and piece styles, including a 3D mode.
  • Free-tier users can annotate with our site as well, with no limit on the number of unlisted games you can create!

Sensei Profile Review - The assumption of the Training Program from the beginning was that if someone does all the requirements, they will make it to the next level. The senseis will therefore start reviewing the profile of anyone who completes 80% of their cohort's training program without graduating.

Clubs - Clubs are a great way for Dojoers to meet others close to them geographically or those with similar interests. The Dojo currently has 77 clubs and counting! Each club gets its own scoreboard, newsfeed and Discord channel, which can be a great help in scheduling sparring sessions. Create or join a club here.

Coming Soon - As if all that wasn't enough, we have more great projects planned, including an opening trainer, the How to Analyze Your Games book and a new rating conversion table. Keep an eye out for our Dojo Digest next month!

Join the Training Program using the code DOJO30 and get 30% off your first month!


Sensei David played the 2023-2024 season of the French National League for the team from St Lo, finishing with 4.5/5. In the final round he played a higher-rated opponent, producing his best game of the year. You can see that game, explained by David in a video or in the game viewer.

NoseKnowsAll created two new Lichess studies, which both made it to the staffs' picks list. Talk to Your Pieces is best for players under 2000 Lichess, while Pawns Aren't People is best for players 1900-2400 Lichess. He also recently played his best game ever! Check out the annotations here.

Alex (1300-1400 cohort) won an OTB tournament for the first time in his life, mrlam (1400-1500 cohort) defeated a 1930 OTB in the Najdorf in just 25 moves, and Hubskrt (1900-2000 cohort) was the 20th seed in his club championship but ended up winning it anyway with 9.5/13!

Over the past year of Dojo 2.0, we've collectively achieved:

137,000 rating points gained
66,000 training hours logged
1,341 graduations

Keep up the great work!