King and Pawn Versus King | Chess Endgames

The basis of all King and Pawn endgames is King and Pawn versus the sole King. This ending will be what all the more complex ones, with more pawns or pieces on the board are going to build on.

For an introduction to King and Pawn endgames, watch the video on opposition:

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The basic principles of opposition and critical squares are what makes king and pawn endings easy to understand. By using those two techniques, you are able to deduce what sort of position you are going to get without having to do crude calculation over the board. Make sure you understand them well. Once you do, the positions in the video will be easy to understand and build on!

06:07 Position 1. Pawn on the sixth rank – this is one of the most basic positions in chess. It is directly or indirectly (it doesn’t get to it) featured in a huge number of games and it is highly likely to occur in a real game. It will be determined by opposition. Depending on the positioning of the kings, it will take a different number of moves to reach this critical point. And whoever has to move, will have an unfavorable result! This position is also what you will be aiming for in all other King and Pawn vs King endgames. By knowing this position, you will be able to play the more complex ones out until you reach it!

11:29 Position 2. When it comes to the H and A files, the situation is simple. It’s a draw if black can control the queening square. If not, white wins.

13:51 Position 3. King in front of the pawn on the 6th rank – this position is always winning! White, even when he doesn’t have the opposition, is able to force black away from the critical squares by playing a waiting pawn move and thus gaining the opposition.

15:26 Position 4. The same position on the G and B files requires some technique. The same principles apply, but it’s important to know that your king has to go towards the edge of the board, and not towards the center, because that’s the only way to drive the opponent’s king away.

18:37 Position 5. King in front of the pawn on the 5th rank or lower is the next step in King and Pawn endgames. This one is probably the most valuable because it can be applied over and over again in real games. By using opposition, either side can achieve a favorable result depending whose turn it is! That is true unless white has a “reserve” pawn move, which would enable him to spend a move and gain the opposition.

24:45 Position 6. Distant opposition is a great technique using which you can achieve full opposition and the positions above. The rule is that kings have to be on the same file with 3 squares between them. Whoever has to move doesn’t have the opposition.

29:21 Position 7. Pawns on the H and A files – the only way white can win is by controlling the critical square on the adjacent files. That means that if the opponent’s king manages to reach the queening corner, it’s a draw! He can also draw by controlling g7 or g8 (if it’s the h pawn) and simply not allow your king to progress by keeping opposition.



  1. thank you for your content your the best chess channel

  2. only youtube channel that gives the Grand master level content for free.

  3. Thanks so much for the video .. btw .. I'm looking forward for the this endgame series..because I've read a book … called "chess fundamentals" and by watching the your videos I got the concepts

  4. Amazing channel. Truly appreciated. Thank you

  5. Why is the square from the a to e files for the e pawn, and not from the e to h files for example?

  6. I assume you mean the critical squares for e4 are d6, e6, f6 and not d5, e5, f5

  7. may this channel be the best chess channel on youtube 🙏

  8. You sure have a pedagogical talent…! Keep going, you are doing great!

  9. All analyses were correct on the video of course, but in the early part key squares for a fifth-rank pawn weren't shown so let me add something about critical squares. Since the critical squares are really the key to understanding these endgames. Many tutorials emphasize the opposition more, but really it's all about control of critical squares.

    If the pawn (not a rook's pawn!) is on enemy's side of the board, on the fifth rank from your perspective or further, then it has six critical squares in front of it. If the pawn is on your side of the board, then the pawn has three critical squares as shown. It may be a bit weird concept, but I guarantee that it works so get them into your head. For practice I recommend Lichess practice section which has excellent interactive tutorials.

  10. amazing video can you do more endgame like queen endings first you do rook endings that is main important

  11. Really clear and useful. I've watched it twice and played on a board and I think I have got it! Thanks!

  12. Looking forward to KPKP and KPPKP. These are the foundation for all the pawn endgames (and hence all endings) and there are a lot of subtleties involved, e.g. shouldering away.

  13. Hi I love your vids and I learn so much from them, but I believe I found an error from your example at 22:20. I played this vs level 8 stockfish and when I play pawn d7 stockfish used a different series of King moves to you as black and managed to play Kd8 with my pawn on d7 and King on c6, resulting in a drawn position. I wasn't safe to advance my pawn and instead had to get the king to the 7th rank first. Please tell me if I'm wrong or if I missed something.

  14. Another rule of thumb for non-rook pawns — if you have 2 of the following 3 conditions it is winning provided the pawn can't be immediately captured: 1) king in front of pawn, 2) opposition, and 3) king on 6th rank.

  15. By far the best chess theory Channel. Keep up the good work!

  16. Besides the King, only line pieces (i.e. Queen, Rook, and Bishop) can triangulate, i.e. return to a square in odd number of moves

    Philidor position illustrates this

    If White is to move, in the main line, the ♕ triangulates 1. ♕e5† ♚(a-file), 2. ♕a1† followed by 3. ♕a5 and the triangulation is complete.

    Black with the move in the initial position has 2 main possibilities:

    1… ♜f7

    2. ♕e5† ♚(a-file)

    3. ♕b2

    Or 1… ♜b3 — This square is related to f7, being the reflection about the anti-diagonal a8-h1

    2. ♕e5† ♚a1

    3. ♕g7 — This is the reflection of b2 about the anti-diagonal

  17. Your content is great 💥💥please keep going 👍

  18. Great content! Love from Africa. Thank you!

  19. What an amazing content I've just found out! You have such a teaching talent! Keep up with the good work!

  20. this is pure knowledges of chess … backbones of chess knowledges😎👍👍👍👍👍👏thanks much for this.

  21. I am from Brazil and this video is the best video I have seen. Congratulation!!

  22. THE BEST explaination this basic concepts with out any confusions .
    It's best king and pawn vs king explaination i ever had.
    Sir u r BEST teacher.

  23. Pressing thé like befor watching
    This ils how awsome u r

  24. Hi hanging pawns, I dont know if you read off later videos but the quality of your videos is not matched. The thumbnails are beautifully created may I add

  25. Great teacher. Thank you. I am now a patreon Nimzowitsch. Question, What program/platform/engine are you using for your educational videos?

  26. You said knight to d2 at 27:50 there is no knight on the board 😂😂😂

  27. This channels is great! Thanks for the detailed overview

  28. best chess channel on youtube!
    thank you very much for the tutorial!

  29. 500th like :D. Nice video, I learned a lot about opposition and calculating stalemates and queening.

  30. hey Stefan the video series is super for my book 100 endgames you must know. Thank you so much

  31. There are plenty good Chess channels on YT. But yours has an amazing quality and so much content. It is like having the biggest chess library at hand. I cannot thank You enough. Thanks!

  32. Awesome video! 👀 if you get some time I just dropped new content too bro 💯 keep growing your channel!

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