Originally posted by Renars
I'm kind of struggling with the very premise of this advice. it's being mentioned now and then (also by greenpawn34 in one of my earlier posts). To me, it seems to contradict (to some extent) with some other advice given: [b]"Do not obstruct your pawns by grouping your pieces directly in front of them; pawns and pieces must work together". If you're devel ...[text shortened]... lating don't obstruct your pawns...). Now, that's some fuzzy logic. Any comments?[/b]
What I know of the subject.
"Don't touch your pawns unless you have a good reason
In the opening it depends on your openingchoice and the plan(s) involved.
Take for example Petroff defense,main line:
1.e4,e5 2.Nf3,Nf6 3.Nxe5,d6 4.Nf3,Nxe4 5.d4,d5 6.Bd3,Nc6 7.0-0,Be7 8.c4,Nb4 9.Be2,0-0 10.Nc3,Bf5
White moved only 3 pawns in the first 10 moves,and so did Black.Both sides concentrate on developing (with tactical threats).
"Occupy the center with pawns" - the classical approach.
In contrast you have Alekhine's defense,4 pawns attack:
1.e4,Nf6 2.e5,Nd5 3.d4,d6 4.c4,Nb6 5.f4
White's first 5 moves are pawnmoves!!This is ok because his plan is to prove Black's opening idea inferior by building a big pawncenter while chasing Black's knight across the board.Black will try to prove White's idea wrong by undermining the pawncenter.This clash of ideas usually results in an interesting fight.
"Control the center from a distance with pieces allowing the opponent to occupy the center with pawns which you can then attack" - the hypermodern approach.
In the middlegame the rule applies to
a.the pawns in front of your castled king (see below game for an example)
b.when faced with a cramped position,or when simply lost for good ideas,many players start pushing pawns up the board in an attempt to create space,or a desperate try to get an attack going.This creates holes in their position and the enterprising pawns often become targets.It usually results in an easier win for the opponent.A remark an IM once made and that has always stuck with me:
"I'm luring his pawns forward so I can get to them more easily"
Black's mistake was 9....,g6,weakening his dark squares.
To conclude,always keep 2 things in mind:
-in chess rules are not carved in stone.Sometimes they can,and must,be broken
-pawns don't move backwards
Hope this helps.