Chess is a two-player board game which has been played since the 6th century and is still played with popularity remaining constant. But is the game still relevant and enjoyable?


Originating in India in the sixth century, chess has been played for over one thousand years and has spread across the globe. Over time, tactics developed further within the game and in 1886, the first chess tournament was played. It was during the 19th century that many of the different tactics in the game originated as players begun thinking of the game in a new way and this influenced many different ways of thinking.


In fact, it is believed that playing chess can bring many benefits to its players; these include learning to plan, improving memory skills and improving problem solving; all of these are vital skills which can be applied in all aspects of life. There is also evidence that playing chess can benefit neurons in such a way that someone’s dementia risk is lowered.


With all of these benefits to playing the game, it is understandable why the game has become so popular. But also, chess has become much easier to be able to play thanks to the rise of technology. Many different websites and apps have helped spread the play of chess to people who may live alone and be unable to play someone otherwise. These servers allow people to progress their ability through playing both AI and other players online. Also, chess clubs are becoming more available within schools for children to be able to learn the skills which chess teaches from a younger age.


At Tolworth Girls School, chess club has been running for a term and members have been participating in a tournament against each other. Sarah in year ten says “I started playing chess against my dad when I was younger and now, at chess club, I can learn more and help teach people how to play. It’s also fun beating my friends!”


She adds “I like the strategy of it and it’s very eye opening as you have to think before you move. It’s a game and that also makes it fun. It’s sort of like a sport; you enjoy winning and it’s fun to play too.


By Isabella Topley, Tolworth Girls School.