Poker is one of the easiest games to learn but one of the most difficult to master. While you are learning to play poker, you will find that there are many different ways to play the game and be successful. It is important to develop a plan of attack that fits your personality and playing style.
Even with a plan, poker players everywhere will make mistakes that lead to lost hands and even early exits from tournaments. This type of play continues to haunt amateurs and separates them from the true successful poker players. The good news is that with enough practice, many of the bad habits can be cured. Countless hours should be spent playing online poker, as this has proven to the best and easiest way to get a large volume of hands in a relatively short period of time. Listed below are some of the most common mistakes that poker players make.
1. Not mixing it up. Playing too predictably will eventually doom any poker session. As the other players at your table start to identify your habits, they will know your hands better than you will. If you are playing too tight, then you won’t get paid off unless someone gets trapped into a hand with you. If you are playing too loose, you will get called too often to be profitable. My changing up your style every once in a while, you will keep the other players on their toes.
2. Not understanding odds. This is huge issue with amateurs. Many just don’t understand that betting and calling in poker should be predicated on the potential payoff and whether or not it is worth the risk. For example, if you are sitting on a gut-shot straight draw, you should only call a bet if the potential payoff is greater than 11 times the amount of the call. This is because the odds of hitting a gut-shot straight draw are 11-1. If you the pot is less than 11 times your bet, then the payoff isn’t worth your investment.
3. Playing too many hands. Getting involved in too many hands is a recipe for disaster, as you will slowly erode your bankroll doing so. The odds of winning a hand are low enough, so why make it tougher on you by getting involved with a number of lesser hands. Granted, you should play some extra hands to keep people guessing, but playing too many will get you into trouble.
4. Not understanding position. Where you are with relation to position is sometimes just as important as your hand. Being first to speak can help you dictate action, while being last can let you represent hands you don’t have and potentially steal some pots.
5. Getting too high or too low. Playing on tilt is one of the worst things you can do. To be honest, getting on a roll and thinking you are invincible is just as bad. Doing so will put you into hands that you really shouldn’t be in, which will lead to excess losses.
6. Playing the wrong game. We aren’t talking about playing a different card game. We are referring to the fact that there are number of different options when it comes to stakes, and you should play in one where you are comfortable with the amounts being played. If you don’t, you may play scared to lose and end up playing too tight.