3 Common Mistakes Playing Poker
Mistake 1: Fancy bluffs can be fatal
Ever seen the movie Maverick? Don’t be fooled into thinking poker is just like the Hollywood movies. Making hard core bluffs like all-ins with a high card of 9 is best left to pros. Get a lot of experience playing low stakes and then work your way up before even attempting these maneuvers.
Note that you are still supposed to make bluffs – just strategic ones. When you have a strong hand like JJ (pre-flop) then you bluff by raising so that your opponent will fold. Keep odds in mind as you bluff – if after the flop there is a J then raise again. Even if your opponent may has a KK they will think twice before trying to call you. The amount you raise should be strategic. Remember that playing to the river increases your stake exponentially.
Keep our starting hands table open while you play online poker for quick reference.
Mistake 2: Do not give away information
Do not give your opponents more information about you. It’s tempting to send messages or talk during the game but it also gives your opponents valuable insight into your state of mind. Continuing to repeat this pattern will give opponents more time to study you and know your “tells.”
Experienced players can read “tells”. How you say something gives them a good idea about your cards. Some professionals are said to even be able to get a gauge on the strength of your cards. Keep your focus and avoid giving away information. There’s no rule that you says you have to engage in small talk or answer your opponents.
Mistake 3: Not quitting while you’re ahead
It’s normal to lose in poker. You aren’t supposed to win them all. In fact some people can lose several times in a row, but it does hit you emotionally and mentally. If you keep playing just so you could win once you may end up in a bigger mess than before. You’re emotional at this point and might make an emotional call. Set a limit for yourself – I will quit if I lose 50 dollars or lose 7 times in a row – then stick with it.
Believe it or not, it’s the same for winning. A winning streak can also make you emotional and make you overconfident. You might end up making a foolish bluff only to lose it all. Or you might join higher stakes tables thinking you’re ready to take on sharks. It is imperative that you know when to quit.
Give your mind time to readjust and process the events. Whether you win or lose, treat yourself. Go to an all you can eat buffet. Why do you think Vegas has so many cheap all-you-can eats? Chat with your friends – you might gain some valuable insight from different perspectives.
Read More Poker Tips:
5 Poker Tips for Beginners
Sit and Go Strategy
How to Bet
Many poker sites have free poker games. For US Players try Cake Poker or Lock Poker. For Non-US Players try 888Poker and Party Poker.