I like to play chess against my Dad. He is almost a professional player. He always finds ways to checkmate my king. Every game I try new blocking strategies, but none of them work.

  • 17
    "always wins" by definition means that blocking checkmate fails. Commented Jun 6, 2021 at 15:07
  • 4
    Since the only objective of chess is winning or drawing the game, there is no "good" strategy if you make the assumption that your opponent is going to win anyway.
    – David
    Commented Jun 6, 2021 at 15:56
  • 15
    Not being flippant - are you asking for generally how to play chess? Or perhaps more specifically work on end games?
    – BruceWayne
    Commented Jun 7, 2021 at 0:25
  • 3
    Against a stronger player who can consistently beat you if you play the game all the way to the end, the only general advice to avoid checkmate is to resign before that actually happens. (In games where you don't manage to find a way to force a draw.) If there was any simple reliable method to avoid ever being checkmated, chess would be a less interesting game! (You could imagine some games where playing for a forced draw meant you wouldn't be able to win either, in which case people might not always do that, but anyway chess isn't like that.) Commented Jun 7, 2021 at 2:30
  • 4
    I think you are not ambitious enough here. The best defense is an attack, so you should ask "what is a good strategy for checkmating my opponent before he checkmates me?" ;-) Tell me when you have got the answer here! Commented Jun 7, 2021 at 12:06

3 Answers 3


There is a tried and tested strategy which works better than all others although it takes some time.

That is quite simply to get your opponent to go over the game with you afterwards and point out to you what your mistakes were and, very important, why those moves were mistakes. You obviously also need to pay attention, learn and remember and not repeat those mistakes.

If you follow this long term strategy you will find that you last longer and longer in your games. Eventually, if you keep this strategy going long enough, you will find that you even manage the occasional draw and maybe one day even the occasional win.


Father-son relationships can be competitive, especially in areas where the father needs to feel strong (hiding a weakness). Maybe your father used to be very good, and feels the need to revive that time, or he is now, and he can't stand defeat?

We don't know your age, but, unfortunately, your father having an unfair advantage of seniority and chess experience, and being your dad, beating you all the time can induce stress that can affect you negatively, possibly in the longer term.

Maybe you could choose some of the following options

  • Tell your dad to point your mistakes during a game (not only at the end) "You better not take that pawn because...". This will make you accept (emotionally) that your dad is stronger than you (at chess), and get him to cooperate, instead of fight.

  • If you feel some competition with your dad, that goes beyond just chess, (and this is what transpires from your post, if I'm not mistaken), you have to accept it. But understand that this is normal to lose against much stronger players, whoever they might be. If you feel this is hard to bear (because he's dad), rather play with people close to your level, in a club, at school...

All in all, express your emotions, talk with dad...


What elo is your father? Its probably easier to simply attempt to win rather than to try and stall losing. Slight advantages in chess can cascade till one side checkmates. A better way of approaching this might be to rephrase the question as "how do I become X elo at chess?" Where X is your fathers strength.

Then go though the general advice on how to get better at chess for example:

  1. Play games on chess.com
  2. Do tactics on chesstempo.com
  3. Review your games
  4. Read/watch introductory "how to get better at chess" videos/articles

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