My Top Five Girls Club Classes

Anna Rudolf, an International Master, holding a chess piece

Hrtha Rajiv, a regular and active member of our Girls Club, breaks down her personal highlights from the dozens of girls club sessions hosted over the 2020-2021 season. Check out our playlist here for many more selections. 

In the year since Girls Club has started, I’ve started to look forward to every session when Girls Club meets (you can sign up for the mailing list here). The wide variety of guests from rising stars like IM Carissa Yip to experienced players like GM Irina Krush make each class memorable.

The club is a great place to meet other girls and to learn lessons I can apply in my own games.

Here are a few of the most memorable classes I attended:

1. Judit Polgar Q&A

This class was an amazing experience, because it is not every day that you get to ask questions to a legend, the greatest female chess player of all time, and one of the best attacking players of all time. The class was filled with thoughtful questions and each one of them was replied to with an insightful answer by Judit Polgar! The questions asked were about a range of topics, from favorite experiences, to advice on improving in chess to material imbalances.

2. Anna Rudolf on Her Chess Career

In this session, Ms.Rudolf discusses the beginning of her chess career and lessons that she learnt from her experiences. The lesson starts off with her showing photos of her chess life from when she was a kid and explaining the significance behind each photo. Afterwards, Ms.Rudolf shows and explains an important game in her chess career, which lead to her winning a spot on the Hungarian Women’s Olympiad team. I thought this class was especially nice because it’s nice to know that even famous chess players were not the best when they started out. This lesson is filled with relatable stories and useful advice from one of the most well known chess commentators.

3. Alisa Melekhina on Planning in Chess and a Capablanca Masterpiece


Ms. Melekhina first speaks about her personal experience on how chess affected her life beyond the board. She talks about the Corporate Chess League in New York City and how she applies concepts she learnt in chess to life. As someone who wants to have a career that is not chess related, the advice she shared is definitely relatable. She also showed a spectacular game played by former World Champion Jose Raul Capablanca. The class was incredibly helpful in explaining the importance of having a clear plan.

4. Irina Krush on Her 8th U.S. Women’s Title 

After winning her eighth U.S. Women’s title, Grandmaster Irina Krush came to teach a lesson that was composed of the important moments from the games that she played to receive the title.This lesson featured fun tactics to calculate, and instructive examples on how to attack your opponent’s weak king. She also spoke about how the experience of playing three rapid games a day for the title differed from a single classical game each day.  

5. The Botez Sisters Play a Team Game

Not many people can claim to have played a team game with two of the most famous chess streamers, the Botez sisters! The game itself was fun to play, and their trademark competitiveness was definitely visible throughout the session. The class was split into two groups, when it was your group’s turn, the class would vote on the piece, and Andrea or Alexandra would make a move with that piece. After the game ended with Andrea’s team winning, the question and answer session that followed was just as fun.

Check out our playlist here for many more selections. and sign up for the Girls Club mailing list here.

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