8 tips to becoming
a better poker player
When you’re sitting at the table facing a tough opponent, there’s nothing worse than realizing you’re out of your depth. Practice will only take you so far but with a few handy tips you’ll find yourself winning at the tables with consistency!
Keep these tips in the back of your mind when you’re sitting at the next poker round and you’ll be sure to grow in your skills! There’s always something new to learn and adapt to in poker and having a few handy tips to always rely on is a step toward winning all the time.
Play fewer hands but play them aggressively
You're always eventually going to run out of luck but the best strategy is having a pre-flop strategy and sticking to it religiously. At some point, while you're at the table, you'll get a hand that's just not worth playing.
When playing, you'll want to play a tight range of strong or playable hands and play them out aggressively. This involves your raising or pursuing even less favorable hands to disguise the strength of your actual hand. Raising your opponents regularly will help make you a tough opponent and give you the chance to win several hands.
Semi-bluff aggressively with your draws
Bluffing is a key strategy and skill in poker and bluffing ineffectively is one of the fastest ways to lose your money. This means you need to be intimately knowledgeable about your cards and let them dictate whether you’ll be bluffing or not.
The idea of a semi-bluff is that you'll bluff as you're drawing but your hand may indeed have the potential to be a winning hand. Be sure to bluff when you're drawing hands and not when you have nothing so far!
Fast-play your strong hands to build the pot and make more money
You’ll want to be sure to bet your strong hands to build up the pot and protect your investment. When betting, you can opt-out and check if it's unlikely that you’ll be outdrawn or there aren’t enough scare cards to prevent you from getting paid on later streets.
When you raise or continue to bet, your opponent may likely fold. While this isn't as exciting as playing it all out to the end, it can quickly build up your capital for the long drawn out hands to come!
Defend your big blind with the right hands
When you’re faced with a raise while sitting in the big blind you have better pot odds to call than other positions, kind of like a discount. Since you’re the last person to act pre-flop you can call profitably with more hands than if you’re in another position.
Consider the position of the raiser, the number of players in the hand, the size of the raise, and stack sizes before continuing the bet and the raise. Gambling establishments like the Pardiso Room are a great place to practice this skill so you can hone it before getting into more games.
Fold when you’re unsure
It can be really hard to fold when you feel like you may still have a chance. The skill that separates beginners from professionals is the ability to fold when they know they’ve been beaten. The desire to win and see what’s going to happen next can be a serious instinct to overcome so practicing this one skill may take some time to master.
But be sure to keep your folding strategic! Folding too often and in the wrong situations is a solid way to lose after ineffectively bluffing your way out of the situation. If you’re unsure though, go ahead and fold.
Attack when your opponent shows weakness
When your opponent shows a lot of weakness you can take advantage of the situation with an aggressive bluffing strategy. Keep betting with semi-bluffs but also bet with a pure bluff with a few nothing hands that have ideal blocker effects.
Play solid poker early in tournaments
Instead of focusing all of your energy on surviving and playing a sloppy game, play solid poker that makes sense and protects yourself and your hands. Early on in a tournament, you'll want to play solid and aggressive poker to build your stack up for a deep run.
If you end up short-stacked and near the money you should switch to more survival-oriented playing strategies. But until that point, focus on the solid poker that you do so well!
Only play if you feel like it
Poker, just like any other gambling experience, is still just a game! Play poker when you feel like it and play for fun. You’ll also play better when you’re having fun and are happy so the mentally taxing, intense game you’ve signed up for will still be fun at the end of the day.
Save yourself some money if you start feeling frustrated or angry. You won’t play at your best if you’re playing angry and you’ll save yourself money by quitting before you get into a hole!
Everyone has a different trick to make sure they win their next hand of poker. But some tips and tricks apply across the board for everyone who has set out to make the most of their next gambling trip. There are dozens of ins and outs in poker but a few tips remain the same.
First and foremost, quit before you get frustrated! Poker is just like any other game and at the end of the day, you'll walk away from the table and continue with your life. You won't play your best hand of poker if you're feeling frustrated or upset. A game is meant to bring joy and poker can be a lot of fun if you play with the right attitude.
Secondly, be sure to focus on playing your best hand of poker. Rather than focusing on just scraping by in a tournament, play a solid game of poker from start to finish with your eyes on your next bluff and your next raise.
Playing a good game of poker is about a lot of factors but focusing on your hand and how to maximize your next move is the best way to win!
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