Poker is by no chance a game of luck! You will need all the experience and patience you can gather to win a hand. Also, never mistake real money poker for a game of enjoyment or passing the time, every other player in the game is there to take your money! I can guarantee you people will do anything to win a poker hand; some will play a fair game, while others will try a bad beat once in a while. All the same, a win is a win, and when you lose, try not to lose your temper. Concentration is key to winning at poker competitions, and when frustrated and angry, you tend to lower your focus. Similarly, don’t get too excited or overconfident when you win a few rounds; losing is much easier than winning.
However, our minds like to play tricks on us, and at times makes us feel better than we are. You might be feeling that you are an excellent player while in the real sense you are a losing one. It is, therefore, critical to keep track of your game and your bankroll as well. To be successful in poker does not depend on poker strategy alone, self-discipline among other tactics need to apply to make you a winning player. Here are some tips and pointers that might help build your overall poker career.
Like any other skill, poker needs consistency and dedication. Practice makes perfect. You should take as much time as you can to learn about poker and strategies to win. Other than that, learn where you easily go wrong and how you can rectify that. Watch TV shows, visit real brick and mortar poker rooms, read books, read online publications and so forth, just do what it takes to familiarise yourself with poker.
Lay out a plan
Anytime you involve your money in poker; it is just like any business. You are now investing your money in the game, and of course, everyone wants returns from any investment. Therefore, develop rules and regulations for playing, set out a reason why you are playing, have a goal, set a time limit you are not to exceed at the poker room, and most importantly, the amount to spend. Only risk an amount you can afford to lose. And after losing, never try to deposit more cash in an aim of recovering the lost money.
Manage your money
Bankroll management while playing poker is necessary. Always keep in mind that you are your accountant. You will have to view yourself as a company, where you are the sole investor. You should not expect to grow rich overnight; you will need to accept even the smallest of winning and utilize them wisely or re-invest them to increase your bankroll. Also, set records of your losses and wins so that you can keep track of your game. Create an excel file and note down your bankroll changes. This will warn you anytime you tend to go on the extreme side of spending, or also motivate you when you record a winning streak.
Never be too aggressive while playing poker. For you to win, you must know when to fold or when to raise. Therefore, timing is critical. You will get bad cards, you will tense, you will play against intimidating players and so forth, but you need to stay calm. Otherwise, you will lose focus and find yourself making bad moves. Never play for real money when you are drunk, tired or angry. This will only lead to your downfall.
Play fewer hands
Poker offers quite some hands, and they depend on the type of game being played. Texas Hold’em, for example, has about 169 starting hands. Among them, the ones that are considered premium include AA, KK, QQ, AK, and JJ. Study your game fast and know where you rank. Once you have an understanding of this online poker strategy, you can then focus on the other player’s cards. The hands you chose to play depends on the variables at the table. As a new player, focus on playing the top 10 to 15 hands only.
Play in position
Most experienced poker players know that position is critical to winning a hand. If you are not familiar with the rules regarding the position in a poker game, means you will play last. You will, therefore, find that by the time the last player plays, other players have raised or folded. However, the worst position is the blinds since, after a betting round, the whole table will act after you for that particular hand. Here are some reasons why you should always play in position:
- When it’s your turn to play, you will have gathered more info than other players
- You will have more cheap and efficient bluffing opportunities
- When you play last, you have the chance to make a more accurate bet
- Being last gives you the control over the final pot amount.
Count your outs
Counting your outs is a critical poker strategy in determining your odds. An out is that card that when given to you, provides you with the best hand. However, for you to count outs, learn about poker hand rankings fast, and be in a position to read the board. Determine if there are possible straights or flushes, or whether the board is paired. Counting cards is not easy for beginners, so take time practicing. However, always be careful not to account an out that might give your opponent a better hand.
In conclusion, choose to play poker at reputable and popular poker rooms. This will not only ensure that you get paid but also ensure that you play against real players. Be aware of yourself, avoid overspending and don’t play if you are not winning. Educate yourself more on the rules of poker, tips to winning and any online poker strategy you can apply when playing this game.