Josh Waitzkin is an American chess prodigy, international martial arts champion, and author. He was the basis for the book and film “Searching for Bobby Fischer”, which portrayed his childhood rise to the top of the competitive chess world. Waitzkin has since become a successful author, public speaker, and entrepreneur.
Waitzkin was born in New York City and began playing chess at the age of six. He quickly rose to prominence, becoming the youngest U.S. Chess Federation master in history at the age of nine. He went on to become the National Chess Champion three years in a row, and at the age of twelve he achieved the rank of International Master.
In addition to his success in the competitive chess world, Waitzkin also trained and competed in martial arts. After becoming the National Tai Chi Push Hands Champion and the National Tai Chi Chuan Champion, he went on to win the World Championship of Tai Chi Push Hands in 1997.
Waitzkin retired from competitive chess at the age of sixteen to pursue other interests. He attended Columbia University, where he majored in English and studied philosophy and psychology. After college, Waitzkin immersed himself in the world of poker. He became a professional poker player and won the 2006 World Series of Poker.
In addition to his professional successes, Waitzkin is an accomplished author. He wrote the book “The Art of Learning”, which explores his journey to mastery in both chess and martial arts. He also wrote “The Art of Learning: A Journey in the Pursuit of Excellence” and “The Art of Learning Journal”. Waitzkin has been featured in numerous publications, including The New Yorker, The Wall Street Journal, and The New York Times.
Today, Waitzkin is a sought-after public speaker and consultant, as well as a business coach. He has spoken at a variety of conferences and events, including TEDx and the World Economic Forum. In addition to his public speaking engagements, Waitzkin is the co-founder of the Waitzkin Institute, which provides consulting and coaching services to individuals and organizations. He also serves as the chairman of the board of directors for the International Chess Federation.
Josh Waitzkin is an inspirational figure who has achieved success in multiple fields. His dedication to excellence, combined with his ability to adapt to new challenges, has enabled him to achieve a level of success rarely seen in any single field.