Pawn Promotion – How to Promote a Pawn?

Are Pawns the Weakest or the Strongest?

Well, you never know!

Pawns have 2 superpowers: Pawn Promotion & En Passant.

A pawn when reaches the first row of the opponent’s side, can become any other chess piece – Knight, Bishop, Rook, and even a Queen (not King though). In chess, this is called a Pawn Promotion!

Today, we will learn how you can promote a pawn & use this superpower to win at chess!


How to Promote a Pawn?







Pawn Promotion is one of the special moves in chess.

It happens when a Pawn reaches the opponent’s back rank (first row of the opponent) and then it is replaced by any piece a player decides to, except The King.

To promote a pawn –

  1. Lead your pawn up to your 7th rank,
  2. Move your pawn forward (or diagonally) &
  3. Replace it with the piece you want.


  • Only pawns can be promoted.
  • Promoting a Pawn is not restricted to the captured pieces. You can have 2 or more queens & so on.
  • Pawns can’t be promoted to pawns.

Queening = Promoting your Pawn → Queen

UnderPromotion = Promoting your Pawn → Other than Queen (Rook, Bishop or Knight)


Frequently Asked Questions

What is Pawn Promotion?

Pawn Promotion is a special move where the Pawn can be promoted to a piece when it reaches the opposite side of the board (8th rank/back rank).

Why should you promote a Pawn?

To increase your army! Both players start with 8 pieces & 8 pawns & struggle to win, but what if you get two or maybe more pieces in your army? Promoting a Pawn helps you do that.

Can you promote a pawn to a second Queen??

Yes. You can have 2 or more queens or any other piece you want (except Pawn & the King)


Pawn Promotion is a very common strategy to win at chess in endgames!

Therefore, passed pawns are so dangerous in endgames – be afraid of them & calculate properly.

Feel free to share this mini guide to a friend & drop your thoughts and questions in the comments.

Keep playing, keep promoting!

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