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Working from a Small Poker Bankroll: Part Two

Working from a Small Poker Bankroll: Part Two

This is the second part of this mini series, the first article on a small Poker Bankroll can be found here.

In the last article we discussed some of the basic methods of bulking up a small poker bankroll in order to progress your poker game. Here are a few more tips to help you out on your path to better financing your time at the tables.

Staying online is a great method of avoiding the higher rakes of brick and mortar casinos or real-world poker rooms. The rake has been the traditional enemy of the small bankroll player but the growth of internet poker has enabled many to avoid paying exorbitant kickback. Carrying out your money play online can be a solid method of bankroll enlargement and provide the funds necessary for buying into solid games off of the computer.

Consider taking on the work of mastering a tight-aggressive style to further your odds against varied opponents when playing limit Hold ‘Em games. Although a straight ahead approach to the game is often less fun, the tight-aggressive style of play is a proven method of slowly taking out competitors and increasing your bankroll.

Lastly, always remember to stay within your stake limits. It’s been discussed in previous bankroll-centred articles but it’s worth a quick reminder here. If you plan to implement some of the above tips and take to the cash, limit Hold ‘Em games then remember to stay within your budget when choosing your table stakes so that you can build your bankroll slowly instead of taking the large risks that can so often jeopardize your previous gains.

Working from a Small Poker Bankroll: Part One

Working from a Small Bankroll: Part One

If you’re set on becoming a big player in the world of
online poker then it’s likely that you’ll need to bulk up a modest bankroll. Working your deposit of poker cash from a small amount to a larger one enables greater opportunity for higher-stakes games and playing against skilled opponents, two aspects necessary for working toward becoming an established competitor. While it may seem a daunting prospect, practicing, learning and knowing a few simple tips can go a long way toward chasing your dream of playing against the professionals.

Sticking to cash games is an important aspect of increasing your bankroll. Although tournaments may be able to host guarantees that are able to entice even the most budget-minded gamer, cash games hold a far better profit margin and allow for better tracking of your current financial situation.

In this sense fixed limit games also represent a smart way to effectively grow your money. Staying away from no-limit or pot-limit events may be less exciting but it’s also an intelligent method of keeping track of your budget and ensuring that you can never lose more than what you have allotted through a single bad event.

Playing only game styles you’ve previously excelled in is another good idea. Try to stick to those styles that you’ve managed to make the most money in before and save your experimentation in say, Omaha or Stud games, to practice rounds with no real chips at stake.

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Understanding Poker Side Pots

Understanding Poker Side Pots

Side pots are a poker phenomenon that a lot of players are bound to run into as they compete across different styles of events. Here are a few introductory tips to help you understand side pots and their impact on your game.

You’ll notice side pots on tables where there are two separate piles of chips set up. One is the regular pot that is most commonly seen in games and the other is the focus of our article. The side pot comes into play as some players go all-in while others still continue to bet with larger numbers of chips. Once this has occurred, a side pot is created through player contribution and it becomes an addition to the main pot up for offer.

The all-in player will only be able to compete for the side pot created to cover their bet but all others are able to vie for the extra prize. As many side pots as are necessary will be created throughout the game and they are awarded in the reverse order from which they were created.

These situations will also crop up quite commonly during longer games and physical play. If you’re running the game yourself remember to keep the golden rule of side pots in mind; ensuring that everyone contributes equally to the pot and it should all work out properly.

Mucking in Poker

Although most adhere to a strict rule to never reveal their cards at the end of a poker hand, many have conflicting opinions regarding mucking as a psychological tool. Even though card showing can sometimes hold its value for this purpose in amateur-level games, it’s a bad plan for any stake level above the lower, familiar rungs of play.

It’s almost never a good idea to muck your hand, no matter how badly you want to share your result with the rest of the table. A situation such as losing with AK on an AK10 flop can be a siren song to show your cards after investing money in the betting action before a loss. Just the same, playing through to the end and mucking your hand will only serve to reveal how smart and/or lucky you were up until the endgame — it won’t bring your lost chips back.

Many players seem to think that showing their pocket after a bad beat serves to establish your reputation as smart competitor and give others a reason to respect your actions but this instinct can be counter-productive. Rather than mucking your hand, allow for the mystery of why you played the way you did. There is almost never a good situation for revealing your actual thinking in a game of poker.

It may seem like an elementary rule to follow but knowing to never muck your cards is one basic habit to keep in mind if you want every possible edge in your game. While it can be incredibly tempting to reveal your bad beat it’s always a good idea to ignore the opportunity and keep your cards close to your chest.

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Basic Strategy in Razz Poker

Razz poker is undoubtedly unique for players familiar with the usual goal of achieving high value cards in order to succeed. After figuring out the basic flow and objectives of the style there are still other important aspects of the game to keep in mind. Here are a few of them.

Quality starting hands in
Razz poker are important to learn and remember so you know when to play and when to fold or take it easy on betting. Luckily they’re fairly easy to recognize and memorize in Razz. Base the starting hands you enter the pot with on their low value and try to push away your urge to fold on a traditionally “bad” deal.

Look for and remember the importance of “dead” cards that you are dealt or see at the table. While other games focus on using “live” cards (those that typically improve your chances at a win such as face cards), ignore your instinct to flop on low cards. Dead cards are good to receive and important to note in a
Razz poker game.

Be vigilant with watching the entire table and the visible cards. Quality stud players are always monitoring the other cards on the table and are able to gauge their own actions based on the information available from their competitor’s up cards.

Many of the same strategies that lead to successful stud games can also be applied to similar effect with Razz. Perhaps the most significant aspect of solid
Razz poker play is based on memorization and comfort however, so it’s well worth playing many practice games before staking anything substantial in a game of this style.

Looking at the Rules of Razz Poker

After becoming comfortable with the goal and ideal hands of
Razz poker it’s important to understand the rules and table action of the game.

Razz poker functions in a similar fashion to other stud games. Each player must post the ante before they are dealt three cards, one face up and two faces down (hole cards). The first betting round is carried out at this point. The dealer then continues to carry out this process in the usual, clockwise fashion common in other poker styles. Betting action occurs after every new card is provided by the dealer based on new information revealed by visible cards and player action.

After the seventh card is dealt each player still in the game will have three hole cards along with four cards that are face up for competitors to see. The final stage of play is carried out with a final chance at betting and raising based on psychological didactics and visible cards (as in other forms of stud) before the faces are revealed and the winner determined.

Players do not get to see any common cards and each of the competitors can make use of the best five out of their seven cards to make their final hand. Determining the best strategy to successfully reach this stage is, obviously, quite significant and will form the focus of our final article on Razz poker basics.

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An Introduction to Razz Poker

Razz poker is one of the most confusing styles of play but is well worth learning for the serious poker enthusiast. It is a subversive take on the traditional goal of stud games, aiming to reward the lowest, rather than highest hand possible.

Razz poker is a stud style poker game that is heavily reminiscent of Seven-card Stud. The style focuses on making the ‘worst’ (or lowest) hand possible in order to win however and is thus likely to confuse many novices to the style.

By the end of the game every player that doesn’t fold will hold seven cards and the potential to show their five ‘best’ cards. Razz poker differs again from other stud games in that, contrary to expectations, a flush or straight does not negatively affect the hand ranking. Low cards are good but having a run in numbers or same suits (as demonstrated below) is not a bad thing in Razz poker.

Aces are always the lowest card in Razz poker and the best possible hand to hold is A-2-3-4-5. The easiest way to read and understand low hands can be found in taking the face values literally as a whole number. The five cards above (A2345) can be read as “twelve thousand, three hundred and forty five” and a similar straight such as A-3-4-5-6 would be read as “thirteen thousand, four hundred and fifty six). The lowest numerical amount is the best hand to hold.

The next article will detail the table action that constitutes the rules of a Razz poker game.

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Looking at the Blindstealing Poker Maneuver

Coming out on top in poker often requires some fairly nasty maneuvers. One of the best (and most profitable) of these is a strategy commonly referred to as a blindstealing play. Here are some basic details on how to pull off the steps necessary for a blindsteal.

Blindstealing involves a late position player’s ability to capitalize on a competitor’s need to post blinds and is especially effective later in a game when blinds becoming increasingly expensive. The idea is simple: blindstealing involves playing on the diminished capital of an opponent who has already been forced to invest chips in a hand through posting a blind.

The hand should be raised even before the flop and can still be performed with relatively weak cards. Blind posting competitors will be more likely to fold due to the inherent pressure created by already having been made to spend money, creating a situation where it’s possible to extract a bit of their bankroll before they back off from not wanting to lose even more money in a single round.

It’s fairly apparent but still worth noting that performing a blindsteal play is a poor idea early in a game when blinds are still inexpensive enough not to make a significant difference in a competitor’s actions. If the blinds aren’t large enough to create the appropriate level of pressure then the maneuver won’t be effective.

blindsteals maneuver may be ruthless but it’s also an intelligent method of knocking out (even temporarily) weak competition while gaining a few extra chips for your bankroll.

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A Handful of Poker Tells: Part Four of Four

This is the fourth part of a four part mini series on Poker Tells. The first part can be found here. The second part can be found here.The third part can be found here.

Our last look at tells is focused on picking up on deliberate poker tells that can be found through the actions of a player who is bluffing on weak hands. While players with weak hands attempt to stay under the radar and keep the pot as low as possible they may exhibit certain behaviour that can be turned to your advantage.

Staring is one of the easiest giveaways you can hope to find in a bluffing situation. An opponent who attempts intimidation through a persistent stare is most likely trying to unnerve you or others and actually holds a weak set of cards.

Threatening with poker chips is another deliberate tell that can greatly help in informing your decisions. A competitor that reaches to place his or her poker chips during an opponent’s turn is most likely making an intimidation attempt and is bluffing with a weak hand. The same is true for a competitor who rushes the last moments of their competitor’s turn in an attempt to force their action or make a premature claim of the pot (a move that tries to show that they are just acting slightly ahead of their “inevitable” win).

Inexperienced poker players will be the safest bet for waging any serious money within these situations. It may not be wise to risk too much of your bankroll on bluffing tells unless you’re quite sure that what you’re noticing is clear enough to place money on. Remember the importance of caution in trying to exert pressure on a bluffing player.

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A Handful of Poker Tells: Part Three of Four

This is the third part of a four part mini series on Poker Tells. The first part can be found here. The second part can be found here.

Now that we’ve looked at a number of typical signs of unconscious poker tells its worth getting into deliberate poker tells and what they can tell you about your opponent’s hand.

Deliberate poker tells are those behaviours that a poker player puts on consciously in an effort to conceal their true expressions and attitude toward a given situation. Although they can be more difficult to spot than unconscious tells, a keen eye and the ability to pick up on uncharacteristic displays can help a great deal in spotting their presence in a competitor.

One of the easiest deliberate poker tells to spot is when a player is feigning weakness to hide a strong hand. Exaggerated sighs or persistent brooding throughout a hand will usually be the easiest way to pick up on someone attempting this. It is most easily spotted when you notice large pauses between calling or betting action as this is something that is meant to simulate indecision about playing the hand. Competitors with strong cards will exhibit tells that are meant to sweeten the pot as much as possible so it’s important to always be on the look-out for them in order to hang onto your chips.

Weak poker hands and pure bluffs are much harder to spot and are thus a lot riskier to pull off. The next article will detail how to pick up on deliberate tells in this type of situation.

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A Handful of Poker Tells: Part Two of Four

This is the second part of a four part mini series on Poker Tells. The first part can be found here.

In the first half of our look at poker tells we examined a handful of unconscious tells and what they can reveal about your opponents hand. Here we will examine a few more in order to provide you with a better list of tells to watch out for.

The calling-reflex is one of the major patterns to try to spot. A competitor who is obviously attempting to remain calm and inconspicuous is usually bluffing and if their body/facial language doesn’t betray them then watch for any tics when they’re calling a bet.

Card watching can tell a good player a lot about their opponent as well. If a competitor glances quickly at their pocket and then puts it down right after every newly deal it’s quite likely that they’re holding a strong set of cards. Frequent glancing after every development on the river is a sure sign of an incomplete hand. In the same vein, a player who is protecting their cards from view without frequent reference usually means a strong pocket is present.

Chip placement is also a great place to pick up a few hints about your opponents. If they try to conceal any emotion while placing their bets then it’s likely that they’re trying to hide any emotion and probably have a good hand. Over-exaggerated behaviour usually means the opposite and is meant to hide the existence of a weak hand.

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A Handful of Poker Tells: Part One of Four

This is the first part of a four part mini series on Poker Tells.

The best way to look at
poker tells is within two distinct categories: unconscious and deliberate tells. Being able to understand the difference between these signs can be of great importance for serious poker players and is well worth studying for use in face-to-face games. The first half of our examination of poker tells will focus on typical examples of unconscious tells.

Unconscious tells are the type that you’re most likely to notice in an amateur game where the table is comprised of competitors who have not yet trained themselves to properly conceal these signs. They’re categorized by the player’s lack of control over the noted behaviour and occur without deliberate intention.

Nervousness is often thought of as a sign of a weak hand when in fact the opposite is true. A competitor that seems wary is most likely adopting the behaviour as a way to conceal a strong hand and, luckily, fake nerves are often easy to spot.

Another easily noticeable unconscious tell is found in an opponent’s posture. Players with a strong poker hand are more likely to sit forward or tense their shoulders because they are concentrating on how to best utilize their pocket. A relaxed competitor is more likely to be holding weak cards and will sit back in their seat or display dropped, hanging shoulders due to their psychological resignation for the duration of the hand.

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Handling a Large Poker Chip Stack

It’s not exactly the worst situation at the poker table when you’ve found yourself with a large chip stack but it’s worth knowing a few tips about the best way to use this to your advantage.

Knowing how to handle a
large chip stack depends greatly on your goal in a game. If you’re sitting at a tournament then it’s likely that you’re either out for the biggest possible financial reward or the bragging rights and notoriety of taking first place.

If you’re attempting to do nothing more than come out on top then a
large chip stack is best viewed as a tool for taking others down through sheer attrition. A large chip stack can allow for even mediocre hands to stretch their worth much further as it allows you to act much more aggressively on tough bets and showdowns. Pure bluffing or semi-bluffing poorer players also becomes strategically viable if you don’t mind throwing chips away at intimidating others into backing away from a hand.

The opposite attitude should be utilized if you’ve achieved a large chip stack and merely wish to increase it before leaving the table. Cautious playing will allow your chips to stay firmly in hand while your nurture your payout to its largest possible size.

Remember that keeping your chips high can always act as a safety net to cover for even the worst situations and will go a long way toward winning a game and avoiding common pitfalls such as increasingly large blinds or bad beats.

The Art of Discipline in Poker

Every quality poker player knows that there is a lot to be gained from restraint in the typical game. Discipline is an aspect of worthwhile poker play that is incredibly important and unfortunately, rather difficult to teach. Just the same, there are a few basic tips which can be provided to help players in learning how to restrain themselves.

Remembering your past mistakes is of paramount importance toward learning proper discipline and should be kept in mind after every loss. Reading bad beat stories can be a quicker (and less costly) way to learn what to avoid and how to cultivate proper restraint through other player’s recorded mistakes.

Discipline must also be exercised in game selection. Even if bigger tournaments or buy-ins appeal to you remember that choosing the level which suits your bankroll and ability will always have a positive return on your overall success. Shooting outside of your range will more likely provide you with a bad beat of your own rather than any sort of financial return.

Last of the tips to remember is knowing when to fold a bad hand or backing out of a round after the flop. Although it’s easier said than done in many cases try to remember what you’ve learned from poor game selection and over-ambition. It’ll always provide you with more success in the long run.

Dealing with the Poker Luck Factor

Although it may seem a bit anti-strategy to even mention the word ‘luck’ in a poker tip, the (fairly non-mathematic) reading of consequences involving good or bad situations can be important to note. Here are a few points regarding the ‘luck factor’ in a game of poker.

Short-term luck is the most predominant experience of the phenomenon likely to occur. Even when enjoying an upswing in your fortunes, remember that no player is statistically able to ride good circumstances all the way to steady success. Short-term luck should be taken as one small part of an overall strategy for your game and certainly not the only factor you have to rely upon.

While experiencing the opposite experience it’s important to remember that bad luck can’t hold out any longer than good. Although it can be incredibly discouraging to get knocked down from a good hand by unforeseen circumstances, this kind of bad beat must always be anticipated. Never put yourself into a situation where bad luck can take you right off your path and always remember that the luck factor is the most unreliable aspect of poker.

Good or bad luck is one part of the game that cannot be taken as a constant but is better understood through a careful reading of odds and outs. Although this may seem much more romantic than some views regarding poker playing, counting too much on the
luck factor is always dangerous ground for serious competitors.

Basics Tips for Poker Ring-Game Play

Poker ring-games are a great way to experience the biggest thrills of poker. Since regular tournaments use your buy-in as chips they inevitably lose some of the adrenaline-pumping side effects of ring-game pots and the different style of play which naturally goes along with it. If you’re just getting into ring-games there are a few important tips worth looking at.

Always enter a ring-game with the appropriate bankroll. If you’re too strapped to be able to properly play this type of tournament then it’s much better to just buy-in to a tournament or wait for a good freeroll. Playing scared in a ring-game is a recipe for disaster. Decisions must be made with the bigger picture in mind; not based on whether you’ll be able to pay rent or not.

Watch out for the
poker sharks too. As a natural aspect of the above point, many of the most unsavory poker players will show up in ring-games hoping to easily add to their bankroll by picking off weaker players. Carefully study your opponents and always be on the guard for this type of competition.

It’s essential to be patient in a
poker ring-game as the games often boil down to bankroll size to a much larger degree than tournament play. Acting cautiously and only making big moves when the odds are in your favour is important toward achieving any level of success within ring-games.

Basic Tips for Poker Tournament Play

Tournament play is where many of the best poker players go to cut their teeth and start into earnest attempts at fame and (sometimes relative) fortune. It can be a bit difficult to move from the simpler realm of sit-and-goes to meatier, often more difficult tournament play however. Here are a few tips to get you started on your way.

Pick the appropriate event for your skill level and experience. Before you jump right into the first tournament that catches your eye it’s a good idea to monitor the options for a few days (or weeks depending on which site/venue you frequent) and gauge what’s ahead. Look for the style of game you’re most comfortable in and, especially when just starting out, the buy-in you can afford to take out of your bankroll.

Remember that
Poker Tournaments are essentially a war of attrition once you’re actually sitting down at one. Once you’ve entered the game it’s a good idea to play safe and try to spot the weaker players so you can get to work on wearing them down. When play becomes more challenging, try to stick to more conservative betting while unsure of competitor patterns and always keep the value of your bankroll (relative to the rest of the table) in mind.

Practice often on freeroll games as well. We’ve covered the different approaches to entering freerolls before and discussed the high percentage of gamblers who head for these games as a way of practicing before tournaments. As a result of this there will plenty of great opportunities to come up against serious opponents in freerolls while minimizing your risk through the no-cost play.

Is Taking Notes Whilst Playing Poker Important?

Some of the best poker players in the world religiously take notes during or after games while many seem to get by just fine without the habit. Knowing what you should do depends on your own style but just the same, here are a few things to consider regarding whether you should take notes on poker or not.

The first aspect to consider is whether you’re playing online or in a brick-and-mortar setting. Obviously note-taking is relatively uncouth (or downright embarrassing) when seated face-to-face with other players so if you feel you need to do it, wait until after the game.

Note-taking is often incorporated into online sites though which is something that encourages the practice. Even when it’s not, many players open a simple text editor (such as Notepad in Windows) to jot good or bad plays into. Deciding whether you need to take notes becomes greatly simplified if you’re mainly an online player. Even keeping just a few short descriptions of plays can often be enough to jog your memory of the event which you figured was worth recording.

Ultimately the decision whether to take notes or not depends mostly on your individual style and how much you trust your memory. Whatever your decision the most important thing is to always remain a thoughtful player who is able to learn from each and every game.

If you need any advice on taking notes, be sure to check out the Productivity blog at

Picking the Right Poker Game to Play

It’s always important to know your place in the poker world whether that relates to choosing the right table, limit or even style of play. Picking the right game to jump into depends a lot on your personal style, bankroll and level of experience. Nonetheless there are a few tips worth providing on the subject of gaming options.

The first factor to consider is, as mentioned above,
your bankroll. Never buy into games that you don’t have a real chance of succeeding in. Even if you’ve saved up for that tournament with a big guarantee it’s necessary to always remember that your opponents will mostly be made up of those who have been playing the game successfully and long enough that their buy-in isn’t a life-changing investment.

The next most important aspect is your
skill level. Knowing your style and strengths in play is completely essential toward picking the right game. If you’re not that adept of a player yet then stick to individual games before attempting full-out tournaments. Practice on freerolls and no-money games (with higher virtual limits) before choosing to enter a game above your current experience.

Knowing where you have and have not succeeded before is essential as well. Some
poker players may excel in fixed limit Hold ‘Em but suffer in the same style’s no limit or pot limit styles. Take note of the type of games you’ve done best in and only enter those until you feel more comfortable playing in a different style of game.

Making the Move from Online to Brick and Mortar Play

One of the most difficult processes that professional poker players can carry out is in switching from online to real world, brick and mortar play. There are a few tips which can help facilitate the change however and they’re worth looking at here.

The first thing to consider is the considerable speed of
online play, compared to the traditional movement of a physical game. Online players must be able to adjust their levels of patience and slow their decision making down when learning to play offline more often.

The next most important factor is probably visibility. Online
poker pros quickly become adept at bluffing and maneuvering around games without having to worry about visual tics and tells but this pretty much gets thrown out the window at face-to-face games. Knowing how to control yourself while reading others is an essential skill to learn.

Seat selection is the last aspect of play to consider here. Online poker games almost never let players pick their own seat but in
casino and hall tables people get up and sit down fairly often. Picking your own position is a luxury worth taking advantage of for players wanting to get every possible advantage out of a game.

When to Give Up on a Good Poker Starting Hand

One of the hardest aspects of poker strategy to get a handle on comes from knowing when to give up on a good starting hand. Obviously, in a game where luck can play a big roll in starting odds, it can be extremely difficult to let go of something good once it has come up. Just the same, it’s important to have the discipline necessary to look at the big picture so you can make sacrifices when necessary.

Concentrating too much on your own cards usually provides the reason for the aforementioned issue. If you have a better grasp of the entire table then it becomes much easier to fold a good hand and place your cards within the broader picture of the game on a whole.

Not using the river as perspective is another big problem. Even if you have pocket black aces, this hand isn’t necessarily going to hold up if the river doesn’t accommodate your cards. Good players with a solid pocket will fold when they know there is a decent chance that other players may be able to beat them based on the board.

If your opponent is reading you well your card quality doesn’t matter much either. In these situations it’s best to fold rather than being taken down by someone who has obviously gotten one up on you psychologically. These situations are probably the trickiest to determine and act upon but they’re definitely worth knowing about and keeping in mind.

The Basics of Poker Slowplay

Learning how to properly execute a slowplay is an important skill for poker players to pick up and use in their game. The idea behind the move basically falls within the realm of bluffing and can be taken advantage of both on and offline.

A slowplay involves hiding a strong hand during the betting rounds. It is used to fool other players into situations where they can be manipulated and thus controlled into all sorts of behavior, from raising to folding. A successful slowplay can be used to gauge other player’s reactions and also force weaker opponents out of the game if so desired.

Slowplays are best used on the flop when your opponents will believe that you’ve been dealt a bad hand and appear to be doing nothing more than a pure bluff. They become less effective with every subsequent deal however and should obviously not be used on the river (when the whole idea becomes pretty well moot).

If used sparingly and wisely slowplays can make all the difference in a game of poker. They can result in bigger pots, controlled opponents and winning rounds. For all these reasons it’s worth incorporating the odd slowplay into your tactical base.

Poker Probing with Bets

Online poker can make finding out your opponent’s habits and play style difficult but many superb internet-only professionals are able to employ a few unique tools to overcome anonymity and figure out their opponents.

Probing with bets simply refers to the act of spending a bit of money to force your competitors into the open. Since you can’t rely on visual tells in online poker, you’re often forced to raise in order to determine what kind of hand your opponents have. Probe bets are the best way to do this; putting some of your bankroll down as a sacrifice in order to figure out how much others are willing to gamble on a hand.

Obviously probe bets are only a wise move when you actually have a hand worth spending a bit of money on. Throw a small number of chips into at least the first turn if you think your pocket is enough to take the hand with. If others respond by upping the pot then you know they probably have something worth playing as well. Of course it’s worth mentioning that others may do the same thing to you (or try to bluff you out of the hand) but experimenting with probe bets is essential toward improving your game.

The Importance of Pot Size in Poker

Pot size can (or should) have a large impact on how you approach different types of games. Whether playing a smaller or larger pot, varying strategies must be applied in order to achieve success.

Good players should usually shoot for smaller pots. If you have a fairly substantial bankroll then your chances of succeeding in a small pot poker game becomes much higher. Most often, the players who enter into these ranges of games aren’t approaching the table with a huge stack of chips. This means that a solid poker player has a good chance of knocking out their competitors through a combination of skill and a fairly large bankroll.

Big pots are much harder to pull off well for the majority of players. Having so many chips at the table can turn larger pot games into a veritable war of attrition where much more is at stake. In many fixed limit tournaments players do the best because they pick and choose which games to enter based on their bankroll and the pot size of matches. If you are able to relate your situation to the importance of pot size then it’s far more likely to find success on the whole.

Introduction to Multi-Tabling in Poker

A lot of players just don’t get enough out of having one game on the go at a time and, luckily enough, online poker often presents the option of enjoying the action on several tables at once. Multi-tabling isn’t for everyone however and a brief introduction to its ins and outs is necessary for those who haven’t attempted it yet.

The most prevalent positive aspect of multi-table play is also the most commonly cited negative part as well. Most players get into multi-tabling simply because they want more hands to occur at all times. For poker enthusiasts who are able to split their attention between a few different games, multi-tabling offers perhaps the most exciting feature in online play.

If you know you don’t have the concentration or ability to constantly review more than one game at a time, multi-tabling is a bad decision however. Even some of the most skilled professionals will not engage in the practice simply because it forces a player to miss little things. When you’re playing only one table it naturally forces you to study all the nuances of your competitors whereas playing over a few games makes every decision more of an instinct.

Ultimately every player has to decide whether multi-tabling is good or bad for their own particular style. It’s certainly worth a shot for the experience alone but the pressure and fast pace make it a practice in which only those suited for the style are able to succeed in. More in-depth tips regarding multi-table play will be discussed in future articles.

Basic Omaha Strategy: The Starting Hand

Much of your success in Omaha Poker comes from your starting hand just as in Texas Hold ‘Em. Knowing when to fold and when to play is as important here as it is in any other style of poker playing and is worth the time to learn.

Simply because of the fact that Omaha provides players with four pocket cards, the strength of your own deal is far more important in this style than in Hold ‘Em. Cards need to work very well together and contain a lot of flop potential to warrant entering into betting. Position is also extremely significant in Omaha just as it is in Hold ‘Em so this factor must be taken into account before entering a round.

If you’ve received middle cards (7s through 10s essentially) then you must have strong accompaniment to rationalize playing them. A pair of 8s, say, is worth holding on to but just one 10 is not usually strong enough to take into flop play in Omaha. Players must be much more ruthless with these ‘middle’ cards in Omaha. Aside from this, pretty much the same pre-flop worth remains the same in this style. The basic rule to keep in mind is just toward being stricter with your hand worth overall. Only enter into betting with a pocket that is stronger than the typical hands you’d use in Hold ‘Em.

Introduction to Omaha Poker

Although Draw and Stud styles of poker may be quickly falling out of vogue, anyone who frequents online poker rooms will be familiar with the option to play Omaha. Although it’s not quite as popular as Texas Hold ‘Em, Omaha is still a fun and exciting form of poker worth taking the time to learn.

The fundamental difference between Texas Hold ‘Em and Omaha comes from the pocket which holds four cards in the latter style, a change which makes strategy more of a game of math than odds. Players are dealt four pocket cards during the first round then betting begins to take place between each subsequent deal. A three card flop is dealt and then a turn card is placed before the final card makes the river. Omaha competitors use two of their four pocket cards to match three of the five flop cards in an attempt toward making the best five card combination possible.

One of the best aspects of Omaha is the high level of fish that play online. If you’ve taken the time to get familiar with the fundamentals of the style then you’ll probably enjoy a great deal of success playing Omaha at your site of choice.

Self-Management and Poker Success

One of the most important aspects of a poker game is self-control. We’ve all experienced times when our buy-in runs out and the first instinct is to cash in again but more often than not this hurts your overall success. There are obviously more topics within this one heading than can be explored here but a few aspects of psychological control are important to note.

A lot of players will refer to a downswing as an equivalent to a bad beat but there is a crucial difference. A downswing just means you’ve made poor decisions and luck probably isn’t going to change anything whereas a bad beat is actual chance gone wrong. Knowing the difference is crucial.

Keeping a cool head during bad beats is essential. It’s obviously the first reaction to get into a bad mood but taking risks and acting irrationally is the exact opposite of what should be done during a rough patch.

Patience is what makes a lot of professional poker players excel and should be the biggest psychological goal. Skill can go a long way but you have to be able to think rationally and play like you have all the time in the world to win.

Knowing What the Flop Holds

A basic aspect of poker is being able to accurately assess what kind of game you can play based on the flop. By breaking your initial cards down into a few different categories it can become easy to see how you should act for the rest of the hand.

A near perfect flop can be comprised of three or two pairs. Three is obviously impossible to improve and two is a good start to bet on as the game goes forward.

Unfinished hands are those which need a bit of work to be worth playing. Two hearts in the flop can be considered one of these hands because the river or turn may end up providing two more of the same suit.

Worthless flops are ones where essentially no level of success is going to come. A two and a four off-suit may be able to net you a bluff but in the case of a showdown this flop isn’t very likely to improve and should be folded.

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