7 Most Important Positional Chess Principles

All chess players are aware of positional chess, but only a select few truly understand and can use it to gain an advantage and win games. We’ve condensed seven of the most significant positioning ideas into a single article. You will learn the foundations and study chess openings of positional play after going through these instances.

1. Make all of your components better

One of the most fundamental chess principles is to improve your own piece location. This is something that both “tactical” and “maneuvering” postures have in common. Every minute you spend improving your items will pay you handsomely in the long term. Your pieces must be appropriately positioned on the squares where they can operate at their best in order to either attack or defend.

Take a look at the following position. White has a lot of room for improvement in their components.

Consider the following scenario:

• Bb2 – occupies the long diagonal, with the bishop as the most powerful piece.

• Re1 – occupying an open file with the strongest rook

• Ne4 places the knight in the middle.

2. Create a pawn configuration that is advantageous

Many chess players are aware of this, but few are able to put it into practice in their games. The reason behind this is that they are usually preoccupied with “more essential chess concerns” and don’t have time to concentrate about little details like pawn formation.

The fact is that by constructing a favorable pawn structure (one that best suits your pieces), you not only better your own pieces, but you also make your opponent’s play much more difficult.

For example, white is preparing to play…

c5. That seemingly insignificant action has a profound significance. If you look at the pawn chain for the white, you’ll find that all of the pawns are on dark squares.

Because black has a dark-squared bishop, it makes logical to close the position on dark squares, because white’s knight can easily exploit the closed center. Black’s bishop, on the other hand, doesn’t have many beneficial movements.

This example defies the traditional rule that if your opponent possesses a dark-squared bishop, all of your pawns must be placed on light squares. The reverse is true in this circumstance.

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3. Limit the movement of your opponent’s pieces

Restriction of your opponent’s pieces is an extremely effective strategy. We saw in the last example how we might establish a favorable pawn structure to increase the activity of our own pieces while reducing the mobility of the opponent’s pieces. When one of our pieces prevents the opponent’s piece or pieces from moving, we can do the same thing.

For example, white’s bishop thoroughly dominates the knight of black. Because the bishop controls all of the squares d7,e6,g6,h7, the knight has no movements.

Despite the fact that the material is equal, black is already losing, and the confined knight is the main cause for this. White then played 1.c5! to confine the king to a7, followed by 2.h4 to advance the pawn to the promotion square. Black will soon have to give up his knight in exchange for the pawn.

4. Defeat your opponent’s strategy

Understanding what your opponent is intending and interfering with his strategy is a crucial skill. Staying aware and questioning every of your opponent’s movements will allow you to stay one step ahead of them in the game, which is usually enough to win.

For example, black intends to move his knight to the e4-square with the d7-f6-e4 strategy. Because White anticipated this, he took the proper safeguards to avoid it. White first played 1.Nd3 and then 2. Nf2, covering the crucial e4-square. Black’s strategy backfired. The rook exchange does not assist black in positioning the knight on e4.

5. Amass a modest number of benefits

Positional chess is all about building a large number of minor and insignificant advantages and using them when the time comes. White already has some of these advantages in the position below. They have an open e-file, black’s a-pawns are weak, the a7-bishop is a terrible piece, and the d5-knight is in an excellent position.

That is more than enough to mount a successful 1.Re7 assault.

6. Convert transitory gains into long-term gains

In the game of chess, it is crucial to have an edge. What’s wonderful about these transient benefits, then, if they’re just temporary? We must use transitory advantages properly and transform them into permanent ones in order to fully profit from them.

That usually implies we have to act quickly before our opponent eliminates or fixes them.

For example, we are in a similar scenario. Black’s king became caught in the middle for a while. If white fails to strike quickly, black will castle and the position will be leveled. White is planning something.

1… e4 2. Rxe4+, Rxe4+, Rxe4+, Rx To open up the situation, the rook is sacrificed. Nxe4 3. Qxe4+ Kd8+ Qxe4+ Kd8+ Qxe4+ K 4. Ne5 +-, white is the winner. Take note of how White cleverly turned a transitory advantage (access to the castle) into a permanent one.

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