The Opening for Beginners - Part #3

| 5 | For Beginners

This article is about the most important of the three Opening principles, King Safety. It's also the most fun because there's little I can really say on the subject, at least not much too say as it relates to openings. But there are loads of illustrative attacking games. Here's one that shows what happens to a King left in the center.



So the best way to gaurantee your King's safety is to castle early. But to which side? Here are some guidleines on how to chose which side to castle to.

  1. If one side has a messed up pawn structure, like doubled pawns, or is missing pawns, then it will probably not give you as much security as one where all of the pawns are undisturbed.
  2. If your opponent has a large number of pieces on one side of the board, then you should probably castle to the other.
  3. If you think you have attacking chances against your opponents (weak enemy King, open files going right into his King position, the list goes on) you should castle to the opposite wing. This will allow to start a pawn storm without making your King vulnerable. Opposite side castling often leads to mutual attacks, and a race for the enemy King's throat, this is a common occurence in the Sicilian.














So, castle early, castle often, and be ever on guard for the treacherous designs against your King. In the words of Alastor Moody "CONSTANT VIGILINCE!!"
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