Kingside Castling: What is it? When should you use Kingside Castling?

Before we jump into learning all about kingside castling, it is very important to have a brief idea about the game of chess.

Chess is a game of varied rules and moves of various chess pieces. It is a complicated game which includes even a lot of unique moves and special movements with various pieces on the board. Castling is also such a move in chess which involves two pieces on the board of chess. It is a rare move in chess and occurs in only very special occasions.

What is Castling?

Castling includes a very special move which can be done by giving two moves in a consequent manner. The king is moved to the place of the rook while the rook comes to the opposite direction of the king’s movement. This happens both on the kingside as well as the queenside.

What are the requirements for Castling?

  • In either side for castling the king and rook must be in their own position and should not have been moved from their squares.
  • The squares between the king and the rook must not be obstructed by other pieces.
  • The king should not be in a check position otherwise castling cannot take place.
  • The castling cannot happen if king is viable to be attacked from the squares through which castling is being performed.
  • Both the king and the king should be on the first rank.

Also read The Chess Arbiter – The Full Guide for Chess Beginners

What is Kingside Castling?

The chessboard is divided into two halves vertically one includes from the Kingside and the other the Queenside. The right-hand side of the board is known as the kingside while the left-hand side is known as the queenside. The player moves their king two squares towards the rook in the kingside. Then the rook is made to move to the opposite side to which the king moves. We must remember that castling on the kingside involves the king to move only two squares on the right. While on the queenside involves the movement of three squares.

Kingside Castling (Image Credit: Chesssable)

What are the advantages of kingside castling?

King side castling is advantageous in the sense it provides more protection to the king more than the queen. It is easier to move on the king side and then take out the rook and bring it to the centre of the board. Castling on the king side also helps to move the pawns on the king’s side which are not otherwise moved because of protection.

What are the disadvantages of castling?

Although this provides the protection to the king but this also exposes the rook to the attack of the opponent side. The rook is a very useful piece in the chess and has a wide range of movement across the chessboard.

Why should you do kingside castling?

How to castle Kingside and Queenside

It is considered to be a better protection to the king as when the castle comes to the middle of the board in chess it has a better chance of moving freely vertically as well as horizontally while the king is safe in the corner and prevented from attacks of opponents. Taking to this move in the beginning of the game may prove to be very useful. During the start of chess, the whole action in this game follows in the middle of the board. Moving king to the corner may prove very helpful in the game. Due to the large range of movement of the rook it can handle or attack the opponents in a better way.

Differences between kingside and queenside castling

The chess board when divided vertically the right-hand side is called the king side while that of the left side is known as the queen side. When the castling is done on the right side the king is moved two squares while the rook takes the middle of the board. But on the queen side the king needs to move three squares to the left whereby the rook takes the place of the king.

Moreover, according to many the performing of castling on the king side is more useful than that of the queen side. It is said to give more protection to the king.

The kingside castling is also easier than the queenside castling in the sense that forming moves for queenside castling involves much more steps to be followed.

Also read Top 10 Social Benefits of Online Chess Classes

What are the common chess strategies using kingside castling?

Important Attacking Principles

The common strategy in castling is usually done using the king side castling since it can be achieved early in this game rather than the queen side castling. This is easier because the queen side castling involves moving the queen first and here the pawn of the king used to defend the king may be exposed to attack by the opponent.

Moreover, this strategy is mostly carried out during the opening of the game since the king is prone to attack while he remains at the centre of the board during the starting of the game.

The castling generally happens more frequently on the kingside by both the opposition in the game. But if it happens that one does king side and the other side queenside then it is dreaded that that can be a horrific fight in chess. This is called opposite castling in the game of chess. The Yugoslav Attack, the Sicilian Defence and the Dragon Variation are the examples of strategies may take place if castling are on opposite side.

Also read 7 Greatest Indian Chess Grandmasters of all time

Closing remarks

Chess is not an easy game. It needs time and patience to know the rules and the special moves which are involved in the game and needs to be followed. Attaining perfection and knowing the strategies of the game includes a lot of practice to attain understanding in the game. Castling is also such a unique phenomenon of movement which made the game a more complicated one to play.

Castling on the kingside is a great idea to undertake on the opening moves of the game to protect the king which is the ultimate goal of chess. But protecting the rook must also be the outlook of the player of the game since the whole drama in the game happens at the centre of the board.

Do read this article, if you are looking to feel inspired to learn chess!

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