Phillip Alder   Phillip Alder

Bridge Camps Without Tents

During the late spring, summer and early fall, I travel to various locations to teach what are usually three-day courses. Typically, each day features a lesson from 10:00-12:00, lunch from 12:00-1:00, and another lesson from 1:00-3:00 (so everyone can still fit in eighteen holes of golf!). The sixth session features deals on the topics covered.
In each lesson, I give an instructive preamble that lasts around 30 minutes, then we play at least six prepared deals on that subject.
Everyone also receives a booklet with copious notes that includes lesson notes and the example deals with bidding and play analysis.
My primary aim is that everyone has a fun time while improving their bridge.

This summer's schedule is over now, but if you might like me to arrange one in your area next year, drop me an e-mail.

Theme Weeks

Some weeks, my columns are on a particular theme. In case you would like to find them, here are the themes covered in the columns available at the moment:

01.17.11-01.22.11: declarer is faced with two possibilites, mostly at trick one
01.24.11-01.29.11: third hand is faced with two possibilities at trick one
01.31.11-02.05.11/02.07.11-02.09.11: should dummy play low, middle or high at trick one?
02.21.11-02.26.11: help-suit game-tries
02.28.11-03.05.11: help-suit game-tries in competition and slam-tries
03.14.11-03.19.11: finesses
03.21.11-03.26.11: more about finesses, particularly with relation to the opponents' bidding
04.04.11-04.09.11: takeout doubles with strong hands
07.11.11-07.16.11: opening leads
07.25.11-07.30.11: bidding captaincy and partnership bidding discussion
09.05.11-09.10.11: watching spot-cards
12.12.11-12.17.11: basic signaling
12.26.11-12.31.11: competitive bidding
04.09.12-04.14.12: active or passive defense
04.16.12-04.21.12: various defensive techniques
06.25.12-06.30.12: key spot-card plays
07.02.12-07.07.12: key honor-card plays
08.20.12-09.01.12: difficult bidding problems
01.21.13-01.26.13: in an unbid suit, leading a low card from length guarantees an honor in that suit
03.11.13-03.16.13: entries
04.22.13-04.27.13: opener's rebids
04.29.13-05.04.13: responder's rebids
05.13.13-05.18.13: Stayman
05.20.13-05.25.13: transfers into the majors
05.27.13-06.01.13: major two-suiters opposite a one-notrump opening
11.04.13-11.09.13: responder's choices after an opposing takeout double at the one-level
12.09.13-12.14.13: handling the trump suit
02.10.14-02.15.14: counting
03.17.14-03.22.14: bidding with very weak hands
04.07.14-04.12.14: various defensive techniques
04.15.14-04.18.14: bids that change in the balancing position
04.28.14-05.03.14: strong jump shifts

Alder Transfer Preempts

To find out about the transfer preempts that I devised back in 1972, click on this link: Alder Transfer Preempts. These opening bids have two big advantages: they right-side contracts and they are hard to play against.

Responses to a One-Notrump Opening

To see my comments about responding to one notrump with various basic methods (no transfers, transfers only into the majors, and four-suit transfers), please click on this link: Transfers.

Balanced Hands — What Ranges and Why?

To read my discussion of balanced-hand ranges, please click here: Balanced-Hand Ranges.

The Losing Trick Count

For further details about the Losing Trick Count (mentioned in the columns for September 19 and 20, 2003), please click on the link here: The Losing Trick Count.

To contact me by e-mail, please click on the Contact box to the left.

I am particularly happy to receive deals suitable for the column. If you submit one, please give (if possible) the dealer, the vulnerability, the auction, the play, and the names of the key players. Also, indicate if you would prefer your name not to be given in the column.
     I prefer deals with an instructive point, especially in the play, not wild layouts that come down to guesswork.

Good luck with bridge and life!