Ding Liren’s Struggle: A Lesson in Mental Well-Being for Chess Players

“Very concerned for him and his match vs Gukesh”, peers offer as China’s reigning world chess champion, Ding Liren, grapples with seeming mental struggles

Greetings to all our esteemed readers, parents, students, and chess enthusiasts,

As the owner and head coach of Summit School of Chess, I, National Master Jesse Cohen, am deeply committed to nurturing the chess champions of tomorrow. Recently, the news about Ding Liren, a champion grappling with mental health issues, has caught the attention of the chess world. This situation highlights the psychological challenges that come with the competitive nature of chess, and it serves as a poignant reminder for all of us.

Understanding Ding Liren’s Struggles

The article “Ding Liren, a Champion in Distress” paints a vivid picture of the reigning world champion’s current mental state. Ding Liren’s recent performances, marked by unusual mistakes and visible emotional strain, have raised concerns among his peers and the broader chess community. Hikaru Nakamura, a formidable competitor, noted Ding Liren’s atypical demeanor and physical signs of distress during matches. This observation underscores the immense pressure high-level chess players endure.

Our Commitment to Mental Well-Being

At Summit School of Chess, we recognize the importance of addressing mental health alongside developing chess skills. Ding Liren’s experiences remind us that a healthy mind is crucial for success in chess and beyond. Therefore, we are dedicated to creating a supportive environment where young learners can thrive both mentally and physically.

Holistic Approach to Chess Education

Our mission is to foster cognitive and emotional growth in our students. Here’s how we integrate mental well-being into our chess education:

  1. Building Confidence and Self-Esteem
    Through positive reinforcement and personalized coaching, we aim to boost our students’ self-confidence. Each success on the chessboard is a step toward greater self-assurance in all areas of life.
  2. Promoting Physical and Mental Health
    Regular chess practice helps develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Additionally, we encourage physical activities and mindfulness exercises to maintain a balanced lifestyle.
  3. Offering Leadership Opportunities
    We provide platforms for students to take on leadership roles, whether it’s mentoring peers, organizing events, or representing our school in tournaments. These opportunities help build resilience and a sense of responsibility.
  4. Creating a Supportive Community
    We emphasize the importance of community and peer support. Our group lessons, tournaments, and camps foster camaraderie and mutual encouragement among students.

Join Us at Summit School of Chess

For those in the Greater Denver Area seeking a chess school that values both skill development and mental well-being, Summit School of Chess is here for you. Our comprehensive programs, including before/after school sessions, online lessons, private coaching, and summer camps, are tailored to meet the diverse needs of our students.


Ding Liren’s experiences highlight the need for a balanced approach to chess education. At Summit School of Chess, we are committed to providing a nurturing environment where our students can excel both mentally and physically. We invite parents and young chess enthusiasts to join us and experience our holistic approach to chess education.

For more information about our programs and how to enroll, please visit our website www.summitschoolofchess.com. Together, let’s build a strong, supportive community where the chess champions of tomorrow can thrive.

Warm regards,

National Master Jesse Cohen
Owner and Head Coach
Summit School of Chess

Link to the original article in Hindustan Times.

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