Chess Statistics

There have been many scientific studies about the potential advantages chess can have on all ages from children to adults. Seemingly every study, in every country, arrives at a similar conclusion…A conclusion so ingrained in our culture it has become almost common knowledge, to summarize in a few words: Chess makes you smart!


Experts attribute chess players' higher scores to the rigorous workout chess gives the brain. Studies by Dianne Horgan, Ph.D., dean of the graduate school of counseling, educational psychology, and research at the University of Memphis, has found that chess improves a child's visual memory, attention span, and spatial-reasoning ability. And because it requires players to make a series of decisions, each move helps kids learn to plan ahead, evaluate alternatives, and use logic to make sound choice

A recent study featured in The New England Journal of Medicine found that people over 75 who engage in brain-stretching activities like chess are less likely to develop dementia than their non-board-game-playing peers.

Nearly 450 fifth-grade students were split into three groups in a 1992 study in New Brunswick. Group A was the control group and went through the traditional math curriculum. Group B supplemented the math with chess instruction after first grade, and Group C began the chess in first grade. On a standardized test, Group C's grades went up to 81.2% from 62% and outpaced Group A by 21.46%.

One four-year study had students from grades 7 to 9 play chess, use computers, or do other activities once a week for 32 weeks to see which activity fostered the most growth in creative thinking. The chess group scored higher in all measures of creativity, with originality being their biggest area of gain.

Research shows, there is a strong correlation between learning to play chess and academic achievement. In 2000, a landmark study found that students who received chess instruction scored significantly higher on all measures of academic achievement, including math, spatial analysis, and non-verbal reasoning ability (Smith and Cage, 2000).

Studies have shown chess to have a positive impact on kids in elementary, middle and high school, and certainly our experience, suggests it's the ideal age. Eight and nine year-old minds and thinking skills are developing rapidly, and chess teaches higher level thinking skills such as the ability to visualize, analyze, and think critically.

Roughly 11% of the coveted ‘USA Top 100 Lists’ are from Texas, including four #1 rated players. The list is divided by age up to 18.

The UT Dallas Chess Program continues to recruit top young players from around the world, and those players have made a profound influence on the competition and chess culture in the DFW Metroplex.

Chess players now make up one of the largest communities in the world: 605 million adults play chess regularly.

The raw numbers themselves are astonishing: over 6m, 35m, 16m, 50m and 85m people in the U.K., U.S., Germany, Russia, and India