How to Improve Pieces | Chess Middlegames

Knowing how and where to maneuver your pieces is one of the essential chess middlegame skills you have to develop!

For more information on Creating strategic plans in the middlegame watch this video:

For improving your understanding of chess in general watch this one:

This video deals with how to maneuver your pieces into their ideal squares and knowing which piece is the most essential and urgent to improve.

Knights are specific pieces, and they, unlike all the other pieces, require solid outposts. They need a safe spot on the board to anchor at, from which they will then be able to terrorize the opponent’s position. A night on the edge of the board is bad, and improving your knights often involves bringing them closer to the center.

Bishops and rooks require space. They need scope and the more squares they control the more effective they become. A bishop trapped behind it’s own pawns or a rook stuck behind a pawn are bad pieces.

It’s generally considered that if you have a bishop of one color, you want to have your pawns on the other color complex. Therefore, a bishop can be made good in advance! If you get stuck with a bad or entombed bishop, though, you will have to maneuver it to better pastures.

The most important thing is to spot your weakness. Having a bad piece is a serious downside in your position and games are often decided only because of that.

The first thing you have to do is to look around the board and assess each piece. Once you list them in order of how effective they are, try to resolve the issue of the worst ones. If you find a knight that is stuck on the rim, visualize a route to bring it to a central outpost (if there isn’t one, you will have to create it first!). If you have a bishop stuck in your own pawn chain, either find a pawn break which will free it, or find a useful diagonal you could maneuver it to.

The best way to practice improving your pieces is to analyze games and imagine the pieces on their ideal squares. Often you will be given marvelous ideas by the players, and you will learn patterns for moving your pieces around the board like a grandmaster!


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