The following exercises are for the students of KLA Chess Club, a title I, charter public school located in San Diego, CA. Chess is offered as an everyday class
We will be practicing some basic end game positions. By practicing the endgame, this will help:
1. Your overall chess knowledge and realize that the King isn't useless afterall.
2. Help develop a plan during your opening and middle game; If you are up material, it is often a good strategy to keep trading off pieces till eventually you can promote a pawn for an easy win.
Look at the following example of how the King can be powerful:
Promoting a pawn can be very tricky. In the correct position, the defending player has a chance to play for a draw. The point is to put yourself in the correct position.
1. WHITE to play. Secure the draw by finding the correct moves to take the black pawn OR cause a stalemate:
Same position, now black to move first. Can white still force a draw?
2. Now, let's take a look at this position..
Winning Opposition is gained when the side not to move has an odd number of squares between both Kings. Above, the black King has a winning edge because.
a) It's white's move
b) There is an odd number (1) square between the two Kings.
White to move. Is there a way for black to promote?
Here, same position, but White will have the winning opposition as it is Black's move move.
Now, try the following... White must try to promote, while black plays for a draw. Take turns with each color beginning first. Remember the key concept:
The side that is not moving, must try and keep an odd number of squares between Kings.