Fighting Knights Chess Academy

A Chess Academy for Youth

Why Chess?

Chess improves memory, motivation, resilience, strategical & critical thinking, time-management, creativity, problem-solving, confidence, and even reading & math skills.

Learning chess not only offers tangible intellectual benefits, but also provides youth with the opportunity to build meaningful relationships in the chess community while serving as a valuable use of time.

Our Story

The Fighting Knights Chess Academy was born when FIDE & National Master Vishnu Vanapalli saw the evident need for a creative endeavor for a wide range of students. Having personally seen the benefits of chess in his own life, Vishnu began coaching chess with the intent of widening the accessibility of chess for youth. He has worked with numerous non-profit organizations to reach a number of students. He has seen students grow in both chess strength and intellectual maturity from their chess learning.

Aiming to extend his impact, the Fighting Knights Chess Academy was founded with the intent of providing chess learning opportunities to students across the globe.

Mission: To support the mental development of youth through chess education.

Vision: A world where all youth have the opportunity to engage in chess learning and playing opportunities.

Goals: To build a meaningful learning environment, teach youth to overcome challenges, encourage creativity, promote curiosity & support chess growth.


Non-Profit Partners: Shanti Bhavan Children’s Project (subject of Netflix Original docuseries Daughters of Destiny), Raise Chess Academy, Charlotte Mecklenburg Scholastic Chess Association & VTSeva Youth Charlotte


We conduct camps, offer lectures, and support various communities through chess.

"Every chess master was once a beginner."

Irving Chernev, Chess Author, World Chess Hall of Fame Inductee