Winning Online Texas Hold ’Em Poker
With sound fundamentals, patience and creative play you can become a formidable player and possibly supplement your income playing Texas Hold’em online.
Understanding basic poker math, the importance of position, playing within your means and recognizing opponents playing styles are crucial to be a successful player both online and at live games. Knowing the variables that determine how to play hands in different situations comes with experience and solid knowledge of key poker fundamentals. You can read more and find some tutorials on official pages of such websites as Playcasinoca.com, Pokerstarsschool.com, Betonline.ag and others. So often they even record online tutorials for players.
Choose Your Ground: One advantage to playing online is that you can pick from literally thousands of tables to find the one that is right for you. When selecting a table ask yourself two things: Is this a table that offers me a chance to make money, and are the other players better players than me?
A very tight table usually offers little action because tight players fold most cards while waiting to play only very strong hands. By being aggressive you can steal blinds at a tight table, but if your raise is called and you only have a moderate hand you are most likely behind. On the other hand a loose table offers a lot of action, usually several players call to see a flop with a wide range of hands. This makes for big pots and exciting play but with multiple loose players in the hand you seldom know where you stand. When dealt a good hand be aggressive and force loose players to pay to see a flop.
Observe several tables until you find a table right for you. Wait for a good seat to open, preferably with loose players on your right, tight players on your left. If you feel you are the weakest player at the table, leave. You want to be the best player at the table, not the worst. Losing to better players will only discourage you. Don’t pay for lessons by getting outplayed by more experienced players, instead take advantage of the countless tutorials and clinics offered for free on most poker sites.
Position: Arguably the most important factor in deciding if and how to play a hand is position. Online players are often young and very aggressive, making questionable almost careless moves that force other players to make very hard decisions. They play this way because it is effective. Playing loose and super aggressive allows them to bluff, steal blinds and capitalize when dealt big hands. Utilizing your position is detrimental in neutralizing over aggressive players and setting traps for them. If you have a loose aggressive player on your left be patient, wait to pick up a good hand and let them bluff off to you. Check raise to keep them guessing and capitalize on your turn in the dealer position to put pressure back on him.
Expect re-raises and steam bets from frustrated opponents and remember that emotional players often make bad moves, but don’t overplay your hand simply because you sense a bluff, this is what a loose aggressive player hopes for. Remember loose cannons sometimes actually have a good hand. Minimize loss by check calling or folding if you sense a bluff but there are few hands you can beat.
How Others See You: You want others at the table to see you as a threat and someone they cannot push around. You create a strong image with timed aggression and creative play. Set up a bluff by showing strong winning hands. Defend your blinds against overly loose aggressive players and don’t get in the habit of raising simply because you’re in the dealer position. Do not become predictable. Remember there are a lot of good players out there that will pick up on your patterns and use them against you. Unpredictable play, aggression and forcing hard choices on your opponents will make them wary of you.
Is It Worth The Risk? Another important variable in deciding whether or not to play a hand is Pot Odds. Is the pot worth fighting for? If you have to call $10 to see another card and the pot is only worth $10 it is not worth calling. Bad players loose a lot of chips by getting involved in pots that were not worth playing for in the first place.
Don’t Overplay Big Pairs: It is very exciting to peek at your hand and see two Aces, but don’t get married to your big pairs, they don’t always win. Seasoned players instinctively know when a big pair is not the best hand to have. In early position against multiple players big pairs often loose, especially when there is a straight or flush draw on board. When playing heads up big pairs are favored, against several players they almost always get drawn out on. Over playing against multiple players and not having the discipline to fold big pairs will cost you in the long run.
Know the downside: You will take some losses. Unfortunately luck is a factor at the poker table. By playing sound aggressive poker you can create your own luck, but sometimes its not enough. There is no shortage of bad beat stories, it seems every player has one. The most important thing a player can do to minimize the affect of a bad day at the table is never sitting down with money they can’t afford to lose. If you are playing with your rent money or won’t be able to buy groceries if you don’t have a winning session you are at a huge psychological disadvantage.
Etiquette: There is no excuse for posting personal attacks in the chat box because you lost a hand. Losing your temper and lashing out is not only ugly, it is a sign of immaturity and weakness as a player. Quality players realize people make bad calls and get lucky. Take a break and shake off a bad beat. Re-evaluate your play, make adjustments and capitalize on future bad plays by your opponent. Luck only goes so far, eventually good poker prevails.