These rules were adopted at the IBCA Congress in Benidorm 1985 and approved
by the FIDE 1985 General Assembly.
SUPPLEMENT TO THE FIDE LAWS OF CHESS.
Competitive games between visually handicapped and sighted players and
between visually handicapped players.
Tournament Directors shall have the power to adapt the following rules
according to local circumstances.
In competitive Chess between sighted and visually handicapped players
(legally blind) either player may demand the use of two boards, the sighted
player using a normal board, the visually handicapped player using one
specially constructed. The specially constructed board must meet the following
- at least 20 by 20 centimeters
- the black squares slightly raised
- a securing aperture in each square
- every piece provided with a peg that fits into the securing aperture
- pieces of Staunton design, the black pieces being specially marked.
The following regulations shall govern play:
- The moves shall be announced clearly, repeated by the opponent and
executed on his board. To make the announcement as clear as possible,
the use of the following names is suggested instead of the corresponding
letters, algebraic notation to be used:
A - Anna;
B - Bella;
C - Cesar;
D - David;
E - Eva;
F - Felix;
G - Gustav;
H - Hector.
Castling is announced. "Lange Rochade" (German for Long Castling)
and "Kurze Rochade"
(German for Short Castling).
When promoting a Pawn the player must announce which piece is chosen.
- On the visually handicapped player's board a piece shall be considered
"touched" when it has been taken out of the securing aperture.
- A move shall be considered executed when:
- in the case of a capture, the captured piece has been removed from
the board of the player whose turn it is to move.
- a piece is placed into a different securing aperture.
- the move has been announced. Only then the opponent's clock shall
As far as points 2 and 3 are concerned the normal rules are valid for
the sighted player.
- A specially constructed Chess clock for the visually handicapped shall
be admissible. It shall incorporate the following features:
- a dial fitted with reinforced hands, with every five minutes marked
by one raised dot, and every 15 minutes by two raised dots.
- a flag which can be easily felt.
Care should be taken that the flag is so arranged as to allow the player
to feel the minute hand during the last five minutes of the full hour.
- The visually handicapped player must keep score of the game in Braille
or longhand or record the moves on a tape recorder.
- A slip of the tongue in the announcement of a move must be corrected
immediately and before the clock of the opponent is started.
- If, during a game, different positions should arise on the two boards,
they must be corrected with the assistance of the Arbiter and by consulting
both players' game scores. If the two game scores correspond with each
other, the player who has written the correct move but executed the
wrong one must adjust his position to correspond with the move on the
- If, when such differences occur and the two game scores are found
to differ, the moves shall be retraced to the point where the two scores
agree and the Controller shall readjust the clocks accordingly.
- The visually handicapped player shall have the right to make use of
an assistant who shall have any or all of the following duties:
- make either player's move on the board of the opponent.
- announce the moves of both players.
- keep the game score of the visually handicapped player and start his
clock (keeping rule 3 (c) in mind).
- inform the visually handicapped player only at his request of the
numbers of moves completed and the time used up by both players.
- claim the game in cases where the time limit has been exceeded and
inform the Controller when the sighted player has touched one of his
- carry out the necessary formalities in case the game is adjourned.
- If the visually handicapped player does not make use of an assistant,
the sighted player may make use of one who shall carry out the duties
under point 9 (a) and (b).