Encyclopedia of Sport: Every sport from around the world


Chess is a strategy board game played by two players on a checkered gameboard with 64 squares arranged in an 8 by 8 grid. Each player begins the game with 16 chess pieces: one king, one queen, two rooks, two knights, two bishops, and eight pawns.

Each of the six piece types has particular ways of moving around the board. The objective of the game is to use a player's pieces to attack and capture the opponent's pieces, ultimately to checkmate the opponent's king by placing it under an inescapable threat of capture.

Whether chess is a sport is debatable. Chess does not fit our definition of a real sport as it is not primarily a human physical activity, but is included on our list of sports as some people believe it should be.

The game has some official recognition, with the World Chess Federation an IOC Recognized International Sports Federations, and also being a member of the International Mind Sports Association and the Global Association of International Sports Federations. A chess tournament was also included in the 2006 and 2010 Asian Games.

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