Five Simple Ways to Elevate Your Poker Game
Poker is one of those innately difficult games that requires a mixture of patience and skill.
Of course, there is an element of luck involved, but unless you are great at bluffing, doing things off the cuff at the table is laden with risk.
A growth mindset or a desire to improve will help set those players apart, and they will notice the results.
This guide is aimed at all types of Texas Hold’Em players, and we have singled out five simple tips that should take your poker game to the next level.
Fold your hands if in doubt
Ordinarily, folding is considered an act of concession or weakness, and the fish. As they are known, they will be picked off by the other players at the table.
A poker fish (for reference), is termed as a player with little or next to no experience.
Therefore, they will ultimately make rash decisions and opponents will pounce on these lapses in concentration.
Latest research has revealed that in 2022, the global online poker market size was worth around USD 86.2 billion.
Between 2023 and 2030, the market size is expected to be around USD 237.5 billion with a CAGR of roughly 13.5%.
Anyway, folding too prematurely can be a telltale sign of a player who might be out of their depth.
After all, folding when the situation doesn’t necessitate it means you will surrender your right to win the pot and this will cost you in the long term.
Ideally, keep a mental note of hands you played and didn’t play. Poker involves taking some risks, and as the saying goes, fortune favours the brave. So, don’t do yourself a disservice in a game and succumb with barely a whimper.
Fast Play Strong Hands
Poker can be quite fast-paced. Meanwhile, the high-octane action may give players little time to deliberate over their hands, especially during the post-flop stages.
More often, it can be a bit of a sorry sight when a player opts to flop the nut a few times in succession before sheepishly drawing a monster hand.
Slow playing can be to the detriment of any given player sitting at the table.
Originally, poker was played with 20 cards only. However, the 52-card deck is introduced for more people to play.
Instead, if you find yourself with strong hands like a royal flush or a straight flush, it is better to play them and to do so as quickly as possible.
Don’t be pensive with strong playing hands. Putting your opponent on the back foot is part and parcel of the game, so you shouldn’t be scared to be ruthless.
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Tilting is one of the common pitfalls that should be avoided at all costs. Why? Because it is interpreted as a foible on the part of the player.
Emotions should be kept in check, so if that is chuntering to yourself or making angry outbursts, you will only be hurting yourself in the long run.
Of course, there is a distinct possibility that things will unravel before your very eyes. But, are you aware of the fact that tilting destroys dreams and bankrolls? Yes, you heard it right.
If you fear that things may become too overwhelming, then take a break, reset, and come back to the table with a clearer head.
Think in Ranges
This may be easier said than done. But, those players who are within range and balanced from the pre-flop stages are more likely to profit in the later streets.
There are many tools and resources at the disposal of a player nowadays that involve poker cheat sheets which can be found on the internet.
Yes, these tables will describe what hands will be deemed the strongest during the pre-flop stage of any Hold’Em game.
Given there are 169 different hands in Hold’Em, including various-sized tables like full-ring games.
It will be quite a tall order for a player to memorise every hand. However, if you can keep a few of them at the forefront of your mind, then it will certainly stand you in good stead moving forward.
Know how to defend the big blind
Regardless of your ability, being able to defend the big blind is paramount. As stack depths are more varied for tournaments, they tend to be more fluid and dynamic compared to cash contests.
Do You Know?:
The research conducted by the World Series of Poker uncovers that over 100 million people are playing online poker. And, the fun fact is that over 60 million of that is in the USA itself.
The big blind occupies a special position on the board. As you will have already invested one big blind into the pot, there is a great degree of responsibility.
To combat the action of the raiser, you should look to play tighter in the early positions before being a bit looser later on.
Your ability to handle things well in the big blind will improve your pot odds, so make it count.
Poker is not for the faint-hearted. If you are serious about improving, you will need to be dedicated to refining and fine-tuning your game.
The disciples of the game are always looking for marginal edges.
For those taking their first steps into the world of poker, the tips mentioned above constitute solid pieces of advice.
We recommend you inculcate them into your game as early as possible so you can reap the rewards. Good luck!