Positional Understanding in Chess: Maneuvering
Positional understanding in chess is something that all chess players are aware of, but only the select few actually understand and can use it to get an upper hand and win games. Positional play is when you gradually outplay your opponent. For example, if you manage to win an activity over your opponent and manage to realize that small advantage into a win. Positional play is the attempt to make make a small improvement.
Improve all of your pieces (Positional Understanding)
Improving & positioning the pieces in the correct places is one of the most important principles of chess. It is common to both “tactical” and “maneuvering” type of positions. Every tempi invested in improvement of your pieces will greatly benefit you in the long run. In order to attack or defend effectively the pieces should be properly positioned, on the squares where they can perform at their best.
Activating Knight on g3:
This position is from the game between Nimzowitsch vs. Rubinstein Dresden in 1926. Most of the white’s pieces are positioned actively, but the knight on g3 can be placed more actively. Nimzowitsch was no stranger for original thinking and he comes up with the move 18 Nh1! with the idea of Nf2-h3-g5 maneuver.
Later this idea was successfully used in the King’s Indian Defence, in the Mar del Plata Variation, where Black’s knight on g6 goes to h8 and then to f7-h6 in order to support the …g4 break.
The Queen Maneuver in King’s Indian Structures
This Position is from the game between Janowski vs. Rubinstein Carlsbad in 1907. This is typical King’s Indian pawn structure where White is solid in the center.
Rubinstein finds an innovative way to activate his queen: 29…Qd8! followed up by ..Qb8-a7-c5. Needless to say, this is nowadays a staple idea of queen activation in similar structures.
These concepts only get clearer with experience, “You don’t learn chess, you understand chess” In this article, we are going to give some piece of advice in order to play better in the middle game. These tips are not about playing a specific opening or following the certain theoretical path. It’s rather an approach to remember when you are playing. We hope you find this article useful and any feedback is greatly appreciated. Thank you for reading.