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Wolverhampton Chess Club

Checking and getting out of Check

In chess, although we are always trying to defeat the enemy King and his forces, we never sneak up and take the King!

We have to give a warning to our opponent if we move into a position where his/her King is under attack.

When a King is attacked you warn your opponent by saying 'CHECK'.

The rules do not require you to say 'check', but it is polite and usual to say say "Check" when you move your piece into the attacking position.

Your opponent's move must be to get out of check. S/he cannot leav the King in a position where he will be 'taken' next move. The opponent must carefully consider when s/he moves and must not move the King to another attacked square.

It therefore follows that two Kings will never occupy squares adjascent squares. See the pieces (King) section.


Here are six examples of 'being in check' and getting out of it...

I strongly suggest that you set up a chess board and physically play out the moves - thinking about carefully about what I have to say about them as you play the moves.

Example 1 - moving the King

Example 2 - moving the King

Example 3 - moving the King

Example 4 - capturing the attacker

Example 5 - blocking the attack

Example 6 - blocking the attack


  • You are 'in check' if your King is under attack from an opponent's piece.
  • There are three ways of getting out of check.
    • Moving the King away.
    • Capturing the attacker.
    • Moving a piece in the way - blocking the attack.

NOTE: You cannot block the attack if your King is attacked by a Knight. The reason being is that the Knight is the only piece that can JUMP over pieces. See Pieces section: The Knight.