Allan says chess is good for the mind
IN THE tradition of Humans of New York, the NewsMail is launching a new series - Faces of Bundy.
Each Monday we'll tell the stories of familiar - and some unfamiliar - residents in the Bundaberg region.
Allan Menham is an avid chess player and teaches school students about the game on a weekly basis.
NewsMail journalist Ashley Clark spoke to him about the benefits of playing chess.
I STARTED playing chess when I was eight, in 1953.
I am now a secretary and treasurer at The Bundaberg Chess Club Inc and also a school chess coordinator.
What I love about chess is the fact that you have to think when you play.
You have to plot moves and be a little bit conniving.
It is a great game because it is one on one. You are in front of someone, seeing their facial expressions and you have to try to figure out their next move.
I teach chess at 11 different schools every week.
The principal of Walkervale State School, Brad Young, first got me started.
He called me one day about the chess club at Walkervale that needed help learning the rules.
Soon enough I had other schools calling to say that they would also like some help.
Since I have been teaching it, I have found that it helps with concentration, especially for children with ADHD.
A couple of months of chess and the teachers tell us that the kids are different, that they are more easier to manage and know that they can concentrate and sit down for half an hour.
I am retired and my work is all voluntary. I don't do it for money. I do it because I am helping the kids.
My favourite chess piece is a knight, what it can do in a closed board is just unreal.
I find that with chess, you can have a bit of a strategy but I like to play what I call wild chess. You do something stupid that throws the other person off balance.
Chess can take a while to get the grasp of, but these days there are so many internet sites to teach you what to do.
A lot of the young kids I know who have become better players often watch different videos on the internet.
My suggestion is have a go at a few of the learning chess sites and once you have done your research, come along to the Bundaberg Chess Club Inc. to play.