Can a glass of water help a 15-year-old kid beat a chess master?

Zip HydroTap
Thanks to our brand partner, Zip HydroTap

Is it possible for a 15-year-old girl to beat Australia’s Grandmaster of Chess?

Well, had you asked me that BEFORE I watched the video below, I would have gone all Darryl Kerrigan on you and said quite vocally “tell him he’s dreamin’.”

But meet Christine, 15, who happens to be the Under-18 National Chess Champion. Now, meet Ian, Australia’s first Chess Grandmaster. One opponent (Ian) has much more experience and therefore, on paper, him winning should be an absolute no brainer, right? Wrong.

Now, you need to stay with me for this experiment because although the playing field might look a little unfair, in the name of science, we are going to throw a little bit of an disadvantage Ian’s way. One that has the potential to severely inhibit him and lessen his chances of coming out on top.

First of all, the Grandmaster is going to be deliberately dehydrated and put inside a one-man sauna. Like I said, stay with me, this isn’t nearly as barbaric as it sounds. Basically, this experiment is testing the effects dehydration has on intelligence and the resulting ability to focus. (On a related note, you might want to go grab a drink of water before reading any further so you can fully take this in).

With the game of chess officially on, the Grandmaster has to quickly adjust to playing against his younger opponent in 60-degree heat. Which would be all fine and dandy if they were going head-to-head on a lovely tropical island, but they’re not. Instead, after a couple of minutes, teenage Christine (who, by the way, has the best poker face in the business) drops her guard and smugly smiles as she notices the Grandmaster finding it difficult to plan and problem solve, two key components of every chess game (and life).


The two go toe-to-toe and move for move and I wish I knew some more chess vernacular so I could get across how intense this game of chess really is. Basically the more the game goes on, the more Christine gets bolder and, well, the more Ian is discovering a very real physical struggle due to dehydration.

With dehydration decreasing mental performance by up to 10 per cent, it really is no surprise when Christine whoops the Grandmaster’s ass beating the Grandmaster in spectacular fashion with a victorious declaration of checkmate.

But of course there is a dead easy solution to this for the Grandmaster (besides not subjecting himself to a one man sauna experiment) – DRINK MORE WATER.

Not drinking enough water is something we all struggle with and probably all vow to improve on January 1 of every New Year, but it’s so easy to slip out of the habit and forget.

In Mamamia’s Sydney office, we’re lucky enough to have a Zip HydroTap, with instant boiling, chilled and sparkling water. We’re all benefiting from “The Zip Effect” – that is, staying hydrated is the key to better overall health and well-being.

Also, really, when it’s that convenient and available, what excuse do we have?

Now, who wants a game of chess?

Do you drink enough water?

Want more? How about:

Can drinking more water give you super powers?

The 7 major health repercussions of not drinking enough water.