Hello, I am Yug Patel, a speedcuber from Gujarat, India. My main event is 3x3 and I average around 8.5 seconds. I also do 3x3 One-Handed,2x2, Square-1, Megaminx, etc. Apart from cubing, I love playing cricket and cycling in my free time. This blog is about my cubing journey, how and when it started, how I met other speedcubers from CSUL and improved my timings.
How it started
My cubing journey started in mid-2019. I learned 3x3 when my friends started cubing in school. I got inspired by them and learned 3x3. It took me 3 months to learn 3x3. I did participate in World Cube Association (WCA) competition in February 2020 and I got a 20.59 average in 3x3.
Solving cube in an offline event
Very soon the Covid 19 pandemic began to spread in India and everything was shut down due to Lockdown. I was averaging 20-25 seconds before lockdown and by the end of 2020, my average was improved to sub 13. I was participating in CSUL quite often. In 2021, my average improved further and I became a sub 10 solver. I got selected for my first live battle, which was against one of my good friends Hasnain Bilal; however, I lost the battle.
I was very nervous as it was my first Live Battle and it was a very big event for me.
How I Managed Cubing and Studies
So this is a topic that many cubers struggle with as we all know Cubing is very addictive. For me, I personally don’t cube during exams. I stop cubing 1 week before exams. If you aren’t like me you can cube less during exams. But you can also manage to cube with general studies when you don’t have exams.
How One Can Get Motivated In Cubing
I have seen many people who stopped cubing due to lockdown because during lockdown there were no World Cube Association (WCA) affiliated offline competitions. Many cubers did not cube much as well and got into other hobbies. Also, many cubers got demotivated because they didn't get a chance to improve. So, here are some of my tips in case you are not able to improve in cubing-
- Buy a new cube that suits you
- Talk to speedcubers online and learn from them
- Take a critique (You can opt for Cubelelo’s Solve Analysis Course)
- Learn new algorithms from different resources and practice them
- Participate in online competitions like CSUL (Cubelelo Speedcubing UnLocked)
- Attend WCA conducted offline competitions
- Increase your network of cubers
- Daily practice (Target Oriented Practice )
How is CSUL different from WCA competitions?
CSUL is very different from regular WCA competitions. The broad difference between CSUL and WCA is that WCA is an offline competition and CSUL is online.
First of all, you don't get to see what timing the other person is getting until the results are out. In WCA competitions, there is no sign of cheating like there is in an online competition.
The format of the finals in both of the competitions is quite different. In CSUL, there is a live battle conducted between the top 8 participants after 1 week of Round 1 whereas, in the WCA competition, there is no such thing as battles.
How Interacting with other cubers helps
When you interact or race with cubers it helps you a lot. You can learn from them and know about how they started and how they improved. You can do that by joining online groups and racing with cubers who average the same as you. You can practice together with some other cubers
Practicing with cubers
How to Control Nerves during Competitions
Nerves during offline competitions
Controlling nerves makes a huge difference in the results during competitions. One very common factor for nerves is cold hands, to avoid this one can use hand warmers. Another reason for nerves is the background noise, which can be avoided by using noise cancellation headphones. Talk with people and calm yourself and try not to do something fancy and get your basics right.
Solving Megaminx in CIC Cubing Open
Nerves during online competitions
It’s less frequent to get nervous during online competitions as one is at his/her home. But if you still get nervous, try not to do something fancy in your solves, get your basics right during solves and you will be fine. Also, get used to the interface of the website as this helps a lot.
How CSUL Improves One’s times
When you participate in competitions like CSUL you get the experience of offline competitions. Even if you don't make it to the finals, you can learn from the cubers who made it to the finals.
When I started competing in CSUL, I was averaging just above 15 seconds and after almost 2 years I am averaging sub 9 consistently. Once you start making appearances in live battles then you get used to it and eventually you can go to the semi-finals and you can win.
I recently got an opportunity to attend an unofficial WCA competition offline - CIC Cubing Open, where I got 4 podiums and won the event with 1st rank in the 3x3x3 event.
How I met famous Speedcubers because of CSUL
CSUL is the reason I have met many fast and best speedcubers of India like Aryan Chhabra, Kunal Oak, Ashwin Narendran, Hasnain Bilal, Vrishab, and many more. I cube with all these people and because of cubing my network has increased a lot. When you increase your network you learn a lot from the people and as they say “Network is your net worth”.
Thank you for reading my blog!
Happy Cubing :)