“Todd has been an amazing chess coach for our 13-year old son!  Despite living over five hours away, we have made the trip to Denver multiple times so our son can attend Todd’s camps and workshops.  It is well worth our time and effort to travel to Denver, as our son receives excellent instruction and continues to be challenged.  After attending his first Rocky Mountain Chess Camp, we arranged for our son to receive weekly chess instruction from Todd via Skype.  This format has worked very well and has allowed our son to receive top-notch instruction.  Our son really looks forward to his lessons with Todd!”
Doug and Lacy Bruggeman
Hays, Kansas

“The main thing for us about the Todd Bardwick’s June 2014 Chess Camp is that my kids were happy every night after the camp. Apart from having lot of fun, they learned some new things, played many games and improved their overall chess level. The camp teachers were great, they worked really hard with kids a lot and in our opinion succeeded in involving every kid actively in the learning process. The camp was really well organized, it had three levels: Knights, Bishops and Kings so it was interesting as for our older son Oleg, 9 y.o. who is a quite strong rated player as well as for our younger son Roman, 6 y.o., who is more a beginner player. Great job, Todd! We definitely would like to participate in this camp again.”

Pavel & Maria Velikovich
Moscow, RussiaPilot

“One of the best parts of visiting Colorado is providing our six year-old, Julien, with chess lessons with, “Mr. Todd.” Todd recognizes a child’s level and teaches accordingly — not just how to move the pieces but the mindset required to make the next great leap. Todd keeps it fun and challenging and Julien is starting to think beyond the next move. And I’m starting to not be able to keep up with him!”

Elliot Loewenstein

New York City, NY

Giant Pieces

Our family wanted to thank you for your excellent chess instruction while I was assigned to Denver for six weeks. I called around to a few of the links on the Denver chess site and the people to whom I spoke recommended you. My three boys enjoyed attending your class and we have found your workbook to be a great tool in their learning of the game. If we ever get back to Denver we hope to see you again.”

Craig Rogers

Sultan, Washington


“My son started chess with Todd in 3rd grade. He was a very talkative, active kid and we were intrigued that he wanted to give chess a try. Todd never gave up on my son, who was initially slow to ‘warm up’ to the game, and encouraged him to participate in local tournaments.

Todd found a way to engage my kid and before we knew it we found that the increased focus and attention my son was learning in Todd’s chess class was spilling over into his school performance.

Tournament play taught my son important life lessons on how to handle the highs of victory and the lows of defeat. My son’s chess performance has surpassed my expectations–he won a State Championship–and his creative way of analyzing problems even sometimes surprises Todd. Over the past 7 years, Todd has taught him the importance of analysis, strategy and perseverance which transfer very well into everyday life lessons that will serve my son throughout his life.
Thank you Todd!”

Maria Sepulveda

Denver, Colorado

Demo Board

On the 2003 Chess Pilot class in the Cherry Creek School District to incorporate chess into elementary math education:

“Having Todd in our classroom was an educational and fun time. I was really amazed at how quickly some of the children understood the lessons taught. About a third of the class had some previous experience playing chess and it was great to see them apply the strategies Todd taught them. They learned new strategies, such as castling, and could not wait every day to “play chess.” While the class learned names of the chess pieces and how they moved on the board, what was more interesting to watch was how their level of concentration increased as they played.”

“Many children talked with both Todd and I about how chess helped them with their math skills. It was a wonderful experience to watch the children with limited chess knowledge. They never gave up and learned a little more every day so that by the end of Todd’s stay with us, they felt so much more comfortable in playing chess. It was remarkable to see those illegal moves made in the beginning turn around into legal moves by the end.”

“I can’t thank Todd enough for spending time in our classroom and teaching my third graders his passion. He planted a seed, nurtured it with so much love and knowledge, and now, many of my children cannot wait to go on and learn more about chess. Thanks so much, Todd. You did a stupendous job!”

Debbie Lesko

2nd and 3rd grade teacher

Highline Community School


“My sons, Joshua & Jacob Wallace attended Rocky Mountain Chess Camp several times. They have been to many chess camps all over the United States and Todd’s camp rates among the best. Todd Bardwick also was their personal chess teacher”.

“There are several aspects to being a national chess champion. Joshua won back-to-back Scholastic National Chess Championships in the 2nd & 3rd grade. He placed 3rd in the fourth grade. In the third grade Joshua was also the highest rated player in the country for his age. He appeared on television several times and almost made it on Good Morning America. Both boys, Jacob and Josh, were on the United State’s Top 50 list for their respective ages at the same time”.

“Todd’s assistance in coaching Joshua contributed to his winning record. Todd is an excellent teacher and an all around nice guy.”

Chris Wallace
Denver, Colorado

2006 Trophies


“Todd Bardwick has been teaching my four children chess for the past two years. I don’t think there is any person on Earth today that makes such a challenging and potentially mentally draining sport so fun and exciting for children as Todd does. He is very much like your best friend or next door neighbor when it comes to being around my children and I cannot think of anyone who makes such a wonderful came so exciting that I can’t pull myself away from watching him teach my kids chess. I learn something new every time he plays them, and I thought I had a decent mastery of the game! Todd is simply the best.”

Paul Jones

Greenwich, Connecticut

With King

“We have known Todd Bardwick for the past ten years. Our son, Ryan, has taken private chess lessons from Todd and was a member of a very successful school team coached by Todd. Ryan attended Todd’s popular, highly regarded summer chess camps, and subsequently worked as an assistant counselor for Todd for three years. Ryan speaks very highly of Todd’s outstanding ability to organize and optimally staff his camps. The students attending were always highly motivated, interested, and engaged. Todd was able to maintain a fun, stimulating program for children of all ages from early morning to late afternoon”.

“Todd has our highest recommendation, respect, and admiration. He is a superb teacher; caring and devoted. His students enjoy his animated, creative style, and it is obvious that Todd enjoys teaching as much as his students enjoy learning from him”.

“With Todd’s help, Ryan advanced from a novice player to become the Colorado State   Chess Champion in 1997 and co-champion in 1998. He played for school and club teams which achieved similar success at state as well as national levels”.

“Ryan is currently a freshman at Stanford University, majoring in engineering. His success in the realm of chess competition certainly contributed to his accomplishments and achievements. We are grateful to Todd for his positive influence and guidance, and he has our unqualified recommendation.”

Dr. and Mrs. Richard Propper

Greenwood Village, Colorado

Awards Ceremony

“Todd’s teaching style can be described as enthusiastic & well-organized and would suit players of all levels of play. He challenges his students by reviewing positions that his lesson plans are built upon, and through analysis of past Master games. I would recommend Todd to any player looking to improve his game.”

Jim Frasier

Charlottesville, Virginia

2007 Nuggets

“We have been very impressed with the integrity and consistency of Todd’s programs. Our son, Blair – age 7, loves going to chess class through his school and told us that the 2003 Rocky Mountain Chess Camp was his favorite camp – of all his summer activities, it’s the one he talks about the most and definitely wants to do again.”

Paul & Theresa Gilpatrick

Englewood, Colorado

Awards Ceremony


“We feel very fortunate to have known Todd Bardwick for the past eight years. When our sons became interested in playing competitive chess, Todd was highly recommended as their teaching coach. Through Todd’s private lessons and attending his Rocky Mountain Chess Camp our sons have become passionate about the game of chess. We believe that chess develops logical thinking skills and helps students with reading and math strategies. Chess also develops character, stamina, and self- control”.

“We are happy to recommend Todd Bardwick to other parents who are looking for a coach for their children. We appreciate Todd’s professionalism with teaching, organizing and running the Rocky Mountain Chess Camp. We are glad that there is someone of Todd’s caliber to teach chess to students in the Denver area. Thank you, Todd, for all that you do.”

Mike and Carol Caldwell

Aurora, Colorado

Parents and teacher in Cherry Creek School District


“My son has participated in Todd’s Challenge Time Classes, Rocky Mountain Chess Camp, and one-on-one lessons. Each offering has been presented in a professional manner and kept my son very interested in learning chess. Additionally, Todd’s use of real world examples reinforces how powerful thinking and making good choices effects situations on the chess board and in life. I firmly believe these chess skills will benefit my son in school, sports, business, and life.”

Alan L. Oppenheim

Englewood, Colorado

“Mr. Todd Bardwick has privately tutored my child in chess for the past five years. His influence on our son has been uniquely positive. He has an accepting and encouraging attitude, and an exceptional communication style with children of all ages. Todd has helped my son progress from a player who knew only how to move the pieces into one the Top 5 in the Colorado State Scholastic Chess Championships in his age group each year, as well as achieving a Top 100 rating for his age nationally. We feel Todd’s teaching combined with chess has also improved our son’s math skills. The annual Rocky Mountain Chess Camps offered by Todd are excellent.”

“Thank you, Todd!”

Jonette Bronson

Telluride, Colorado

2009 Nuggets

“Todd teaches in a way that is methodical and un-intimidating. My son’s ability and self-esteem have both been greatly increased under Todd’s tutoring. Todd’s summer camps and chess classes extremely well run and organized.”

Ann Gargotto

Denver, Colorado

2014 Nuggets


“Our daughter, Kelsey, loves Todd’s chess lessons. She always learns something and has a lot of fun to boot. Todd is very excited about chess…and it’s contagious!”

Grace Nadolny, M.D.

Denver, Colorado


“Todd Bardwick is an extraordinary teacher with a special aptitude for teaching chess to youth. For three years, Todd has taught my son Joseph, the 2004 Colorado K-3 state co-champion, and through Todd’s influence Joseph was able to pull off arguably the biggest upset of this year’s state tournament. I believe the key to Todd’s success is his focus on youth chess analysis over memorizing robotic chess lines. This philosophy of teaching children gives them an advantage on the board and in everyday learning.”

Dan Hughes

Dallas, Texas

2007 Nuggets

“I was searching on the internet for a chess coach for my son, Nicholas. I have heard that the Masters are a “bit of an eccentric,” and the lessons can be a punishment for young kids. We are so happy finding Todd Bardwick through his summer chess on the internet. Todd is very patient with young kids, the lessons are very fun and humorous! His approach to chess for a beginner is very simple, organized, creative and exciting. I have noticed a great improvement in Nick’s level of chess play, absorbing every pattern and strategy that Todd has been teaching. Nick has been interested in chess since he was five, and now that he is six with lessons under his belt, he can’t wait for his lessons and future tournaments.”

Ann Bernier

Bedford, Maine

2014 Avs

The Chess Detective

“While we lived in Colorado, my kids learned a ton of chess from Todd and had a great time doing it. The summer camps, in particular, were great confidence-boosters. I wish Todd would move to Indiana to continue to teach my kids.”

Craig Stinson

Bloomington, Indiana

2007 Avs

About 1998 Rocky Mountain Chess Camp:

“Sam especially enjoyed the lessons and learning about keeping score. He made friends easily and felt welcomed by the teaching staff. Sam hopes to participate again. His enthusiasm for the game has increased”. Many thanks –”

Nancy Spillane

Steamboat Springs, CO

2008 Nuggets

About the 2001 Rocky Mountain Chess Camp:

“Todd – I’d like to thank you and your staff for this week. You camp was first rate and your instructors very professional. My son Hobie had a great time and I enjoyed visiting with the instructors during the breaks. I would highly recommend the camp to others.”

Joe Kelting

Portales, New Mexico