Learn How to Create an Outpost for Your Knights with Online Chess Trainer

Posted by IchessU on September 13th, 2017

Many players consider the knight to be one of the most complex and tricky pieces to use (and use effectively) in chess. Low-rated players often find knights extra difficult to play because their movement is unique to other pieces. Unlike most other pieces that move on a straight line or diagonally, knights move in an unusual L-shape. What’s more is that they have the ability to jump over pieces—a move that no other chess piece can do. Even though knights have this degree of complexity, they can also be among the most powerful pieces on the chessboard, especially when you are able to learn how to use them to their full potential. Your online chess trainer can teach you tactics and strategies to maximize the use of these unique pieces.

Creating an outpost is one of the best uses for knights in a chess game. On your next session with your online chess trainer, ask him or her about this powerful position that many experienced players use to gain advantage of the chessboard. An outpost can be any square on the 4th, 5th, 6th, or 7th rank that is protected by your pawn and cannot be attacked by your opponent’s pawn. According to Hooper and Whyld, such a square can be considered a “hole” for your opponent. Outposts are favorable positions from which a player can launch an attack with the use of high ranking pieces, particularly the knight.

Knights are most powerful and efficient when they are placed close to your opponent’s stronghold. This is mainly because they have short reach, unlike other pieces like rooks, bishops, and queens. Because of this, they are also most effective right in the center of the chessboard rather than the edge squares. Your goal, therefore should be creating a knight’s outpost in any of the central files (c-,d-, e-, or f-) in an advanced position (most efficiently, the 6th rank). Having knowledge of how to create and use outposts effectively is crucial, especially when exploiting situations such as an isolated queen-pawn.

Your online chess instructor can teach you all about the advantages of learning about outposts in general, as well as the power of the knight in such positions. Knights become more powerful when they are closer to the opponent’s territory. An outpost on the sixth rank is a great position for a knight because this way, it controls many squares on the enemy’s side of the board, forcing your opponent to sacrifice a piece in order to get rid of your outpost.

About the Author:

Albert Fishman has been involved in teaching chess since 1996 and is part of the IchessU coaching staff. IchessU is the best online chess school and their coaches are titled masters and grandmasters. Their students enjoy private or group chess lessons in our online chess club.

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Joined: September 8th, 2012
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