Studying the Pawns (Weak Pawns):
Part of the Chess Strategies Guide (Section 2)
Chess Strategies Guide
Section 2: Studying the Pawns
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This guide contains a list of Weak Pawn structures that Horowitz & Mott-Smith focused on in their book, Point Count Chess.
Naturally, you'll want to minimize the prospect of acquiring any Weak Pawn formation in your own army, while at the same time scanning the board for opportunities to weaken the Pawns belonging to your enemy. Weak Pawns should be singled-out and attacked by your army.
Studying the Pawns (Weak Pawns) Index
- Backward Pawn
A Pawn is considered to be Backward
if it's in a position where it's currently under attack, yet it cannot be advanced without it being attacked.
- Doubled Pawns
In some situations, such as when fighting for Control of the Center, Doubled Pawns
aren't always considered to be a disadvantage.
But, it's usually an exception to the rule and, in the long-run, especially towards the Endgame phase, Doubled Pawns are
weak and ripe for being attacked because one cannot defend the other.
- Isolated Pawn
An Isolated Pawn
is weak because it doesn't have any friendly Pawns on adjacent files that can defend it, and unless it's ready to be guided towards Promotion, it's not really acceptable to tie down your Pieces to baby-sitting Billy-no-mates
- Hanging Pawns
H&M-S define Hanging Pawns
as usually meaning "a fourth-rank phalanx isolated from other pawns and under frontal attack".
They're effectively a combined, doubled-version of Backward & Isolated Pawns, as the 2-Pawn Phalanx is isolated from other friendly Pawns, while at least one of the Pawns is a Backward Pawn.
- Hanging Phalanx
H&M-S differentiate the Hanging Phalanx
from standard Hanging Pawns as follows:
The two Pawns (in the Hanging Phalanx
), both of which are Backward, have to be guarded by Pieces (not Pawns), with neither of the two Pawns, in the Phalanx formation being able to advance without serious disadvantage.
- Crippled Majority Wing
This article highlights the situation when one army had the benefit of a Pawn Majority, but then goes and ruins the advantage by taking on some sort of weakness, such as having Doubled- or Isolated Pawns.
This "Pawn Majority", confined to one of the two sides, or "wings" of the board (Kingside or Queenside), is now said to be "crippled", hence the term Crippled Majority Wing
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