And you too, of course.

Here is an idea. Start using this:

https://www.sorobanexam.org/generator.html

It generates one digit calculations for you to do.

My advice would be to first do these on the soroban, then repeat them in your head. Try to feel your muscles moving. No, better yet, first do the finger movements in the air and see the beads moving in your mind.

People on the train will think you are a genius if you do this!

Especially if you honestly tell them you are working on a calculation.

Let’s assume you get 8+2+7.

See yourself putting 8 on the soroban. Feel your fingers pinch both the 5 and the 3 lower beads in one move. Also, in order to engage more parts of your brain, visualize them in gold, heated.

Now add 2. We do 10 - 8. Add 1 to the tens rod. and -8 on the units. See yourself do this movement with 2 fingers in one go. So one finger shifts the 5 bead up and the other one moves the 3 beads down.

Last add 7. 5+2. See/feel/visualize your fingers adding 7 in one pinching motion.

Now I spend many words on this for a reason. If you can do this in your mind - and I am certain you can do this - then your only obstacle is speed.

Let that sink in.

If you can do this in your mind, then your only obstacle is speed.

Well, that and keeping visualizing the rods.

At first you cannot visualize 6 rods, but I am fairly certain you can do 2.

This comes with practice, so don’t pay attention to this yet.

Visualizing tricks!!!

I give the beads on the rod a colour depending on the number.

8 and 9 become red. Well, 8 is orange and 9 is red.

For me, this denotes full.

It means that if I need to add 2 for example I immediately start to add 10 first and then I know I need to subtract either the 5’s or 10’s complement.

Also it helps me memorizing the rods.

I just see the rods one by one and this strengthens the number I am working with. At first, after each addition, just see the rods one by one.

First practice at your own speed. Later use this:

https://www.sorobanexam.org/mentalcalculation.html

I made a small test sheet for you to train with:

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1aQUEEkSOBS8GC4_yFpmZUtBCr5yZdk373mCUGR_yRuI

The idea is that you open this on your phone and zoom in until the answer is outside the view. Then do the calculation and check your answer.

This way you can train and do it in your own pace.

Don’t worry if this goes slow at first. Focus on accuracy.

While doing this, also do a lot of work on the soroban.

and after each calculation, just repeat them in your mind with finger movements.