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  1. Forum
  2. General Chess Discussion
  3. Advice on getting into OTB chess?

I've been playing chess for about a year now and I have only been playing online and occasionally against friends and relatives.
I've contacted the head of one of my local chess clubs but they haven't replied (and it's been a few months) so I'm not sure what to do from here. I was also wondering if anyone could give me some tips and advice for otb tournaments in case I manage to get into a club. Much appreciated if anyone could give me some help! :)

Does your local chess club have an explicit membership requirement, such that you should hear back?

Does your local chess club post public dates/times when it tries to get members together?

Can you not abide by any rules they've posted?

Simply put: Most local chess clubs post public date/time of when members meet. Show-up. Join. Interact. Be a part of it.

You don't need explicit interaction or approval, unless that's some sort of odd-duck condition for joining your local chess club. (In which case, should the local club ever host an FIDE event, you should report it for exclusionary and anti-competitive principles, etc.)

There could be any number of specific situations or circumstances to take into account. But, you'll never know unless you actually get-up and go to one of your local chess club's meet-ups and actually meet and interact with people and get to know the club. (Why else have "local" chess clubs ... so that local people can sit behind their computers and not interact in-person and be human?)

I'm honestly really baffled by posts such as yours.

Read back through what you've said. Pretend that you have more of an in-person presence and less of an online presence. If you walk a mile in these shoes, what would be your reaction to someone asking questions, digitally, about a club that meets in-person?

Food for thought / perspective. Enjoy your cup of self-imposed masochistic-tea.

(What I'm really trying to say is: Get up off your arse. Go be human and interact with people IRL. None of your questions can be or are answered any better on-line, as they would be off-line in the environment you're asking questions about. Be adventurous. Have a back-bone and a spine; let it guide your weak, shaky knees toward getting the answers you want; you're one twitchy finger-stroke away from allowing your own neurotic anxiety to leave your forever perplexed in perceived psychosomatic disability.)

Great comments. I've knocked 3,000 games online and really do long to get out meet some folks and play in a 3 dimensional environment.

@Eligora here in the uk the webistes arent updated as much as they should be. I know i've had similar with my home town where i contacted the person on email yet i think the chess club isnt running

where in the uk are you based? maybe there are others close or you might need to phone

@MrCharles i would like to point you in the direction of the op's profile.. it says they're 12. I'm guessing you arent a parent or spend much time around kids. bombastic is fine around adults but not here ;)

u go on amazon spend 20 bucks buy a set and play.. its not that hard

@Eligora, going by the details on your profile, I suggest visiting the English Chess Federation (ECF) website:

There is a Junior page:
and a link to show the location of Junior clubs. Emailing the ECF for your nearest junior-friendly club might get you more up-to-date information.

See the events calendar for all the tournaments taking place across the country. Look for one near you and try playing, if you can, or at least visit to see what it's all about. Membership of the ECF is needed to play in tournaments, for grading purposes as much as anything, but I see Juniors can get their first year free! (To play in a tournament, you'll have to learn to manage a score-sheet and clock, and also use real pieces - there are rules like how to keep score, "touch move" etc you will need to be aware of.)

And have fun playing in real life - it's a completely different experience. "Real chess" for old-timers like me.

Thanks @haldad and @ginja :)

@ginja -- Good point. (I missed that. And, I'll very happily confirm that I am not burdened by being a parent or responsible for children. I do, however, have a small, cold, shrived chunk of coal in place of my heart -- due to smoking an pickling my veins. This is to say: I'm not heartless, but, your prototypical scrooge/miser.)

Sorry, I don't make it a point or habit to research everyone and everything all of the time. Take my profile for example -- it is intentionally off-putting to most people.

In this case, I simply did not think to look at the user's profile, and owe my apologies to @Eligora

I jumped the gun and thought (assumed; make an ass out of myself) we were dealing with a new-age, modern, digital adult. A little research would have gone a long way should I have thought to perform a basic degree of due diligence. (This time, I failed.)

Mea cupla.

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