Did anyone here start learning in their 40s, and how high have you gotten?

One tool that helped me a lot (at the age of 39) was fighting against an opponent just above my strength: the SmartGo Kifu app gives you just this, starting on a 9x9 board where you learn to fight, and then automatically moving to 13x13 and a 19x19, where influence becomes important. This, done with no time limit so as to have as much time to reflect as needed, and along with reviews of my games and some reading of interactive books (via the Go Books app), brought me to SDK in about 100 games. I would think that the modern tool where AIs point to mistakes and better moves could have helped even more.


While not 40, I started pretty late at 24 and now I am EGF 3d, I’ve been up around 4-7dan on most servers. 40 shouldn’t make much difference as the easy years of learning are already gone once you hit 20 anyway. I think there is at least one EGF 6d who started mid twenties as well, so that level should be possible too.


There is a huge difference between 24 and 40 :joy::joy::joy::joy::joy::joy::joy:


Nope, once you are past 50, you don’t think that anymore!


If you’re over 50 and don’t think there’s any significant difference between you from 10 years ago and you from 26 years ago… I actually feel sorry for you :slightly_frowning_face:

Interesting. I’m 62 (AND A HALF!!!1 :joy:), and at least for myself, there were HUGE differences between my twenties, thirties, fourties, fifties, and now, my sixties … and I don’t expect this to change.

And by “differences” I mean how I perceive/d myself, the world, other humans, beings generally, and how I thought and think about all these.

Can’t really tell, though, how it is with regard to Our Game … but I think I’m much less focused on “ambition”, “progress”, “rank”, etc., than I was ten or twenty years ago.


You folks shouldn’t take me too literally. What I wanted to express is that times and also time differences seem to shrink for me. When I was 24 I didn’t even think about ever becoming 40, it was soooo far away. 30 year olds looked old at that time. These days, 16 years is still a significant amount of time, but compared with the perspective of myself as 24 year old, it’s become a lot shorter. Today, I don’t even notice if someone is merely 6 years older than myself.


I started learning Go when I was 34. At that time, I wanted to learn to play, grow in levels, win tournaments, etc. I will turn 40 in May 2020 and I am very sorry that I wanted all this. I lost the time of my life while I dreamed of levels, victories, tournaments and other such nonsense. Now I understand that trying to turn Go into a sport is the same as trying to sharpen a pencil with a samurai sword - stupid, pointless and dangerous.


This metaphor is totally something I could see a Samurai doing as an exercise in discipline; slow and steady, becoming one with each stroke. Or even as a show of their insane skill, making eight lightning slashes, and producing a perfectly sharp tip, symmetrical all around; akin to Giotto being asked to show his skill as an artist to the Pope, and him responding by drawing a freehand perfect circle :hugs:


On a pencil? :wink::smirk:

In any case, this is not quite what I had in mind with this metaphor. I did not mean an exercise with a samurai sword, but sharpening a pencil with it for further use of the pencil for its intended purpose (drawing, writing, etc.).

You actually tried to turn Go into a shiny trophy. Turning it into a sport and valuing the journey would have given you more satisfaction imho.


I started playing when I was 28 and it took me a couple years to reach dan level. At the time Go was my whole after-work life.

After a long break, I started playing again in December 2015. A month later, Google made their AlphaGo announcement. I am in my 50s and enjoying every minute of the new ride. And still hoping that I can improve by one dan in 2020 :slight_smile:


i know the rules, but i only started playing more seriously in 2017 when i was 45. the only reason was because i found OGS, which had correspondence game. you know when you are 45 you don’t often have time to sit down for a long game, and correspondence can fit my schedule. took me around 3 yrs to get to around 7k in OGS.


Quite exactly the same for me … lots of things more important than playing a game, even if it is Our Game.


Hey, I’m 45 and started playing this week! Haven’t gotten so far yet… But there are great learning resources all around and I’m looking forward to better games!


Welcome!!! :heart: Great to have you! What got you interested in Go? :slight_smile:

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Welcome, great to have a fellow learner in their 40s! Feel free to message me or challenge me to a game if you want to learn with me.


I started playing a month ago. I am 55 and I have 20 kyu. The size of the rating does not interest me. I am not upset if I lose to a strong player. He is strong. I do not rejoice in the victory over the weak. An equal game ignites me, it gives me an impetus for the life that I lose in the winter. I look forward to the summer to continue playing with the goban in my garden. It will be excellent meditation!



I read Rin Kaiho’s book ‘Golden Opportunities’. The last time I read a book with a similar passion at the age of 12 years. These were the stories of Conan Doyle. In the heat of passion, secrecy and intrigue, the Tesuji surpassed Holmes’ investigation of the criminal world of London in the 19th century.
It seems I have a 15 kyu. I can’t believe it.