A Comprehensive Introduction to Texas Holdem Poker Strategy

Texas Holdem: Poker-Strategy

Over the past two decades Texas Holdem Poker has exploded in popularity thanks to the growth of online poker and entertainment content vehicles like the WSOP and High-Stakes Poker broadcasts.

Unfortunately, the most common path players take when finding the game is splashing around the online poker tables without a real grasp of Texas Holdem poker strategy, a reality that’s caused more than a few players to get wiped out in a hurry and never come back.

That’s why online poker amateurs and hopefuls would be wise to spend significant time thinking through and putting together at least a baseline of strategy that will enable them to withstand the growing pains and the incredible variance inherent in the game. So let’s take a look at getting that process started by breaking it down into two sections: Reason & Process.

ONLINE POKER STRATEGY - REASON

Key Benefits Of Having An Online Poker Strategy Plan

1. Play more tables

When your online poker strategy is set from the get-go, when you know which poker hands you want to play from which position, when you know which poker hands you want to 3-bet in position when you already know what percentage of poker hands you want to play in the Big Blind, it frees up a lot of brain-power, allowing you to add more tables and theoretically make more money (assuming you have a positive expectation in the games of course). When you’re not spending precious seconds trying to figure out how you want to play a flopped second pair in position, for example, you buy yourself some much needed time for the more complicated decisions you’ll undoubtedly face, like how to play against a turn check-raise on a wide range of board textures.

By setting up your online poker strategy ahead of time – and understanding it thoroughly enough to automate many of your most common decisions – the ability to increase the number of tables you play goes from a suboptimal idea based largely on impatience to a profitable winnings-per-hour calculation.

2. Tilt less

Of all the different forms of tilt – and there are many – one of the most destructive is uncertainty tilt, when you’ve made a play that failed to work out and now you’re sitting there stewing in frustration and self-doubt spending valuable emotional energy trying to figure out whether you played the hand well or just made a colossal mistake that might end up costing you the tournament (or a full stack in a cash game).

By having an online poker strategy in place before you take your seat at the table, you eliminate this type of indecision, allowing you to preserve the emotional energy that will be required to keep a balanced head the next time you take a particularly painful bad beat.

3. Simplified path to improvement

When learning how to play Texas Holdem, one of the most powerful tools for improvement you have at your disposal is the ability to self-analyze. By creating a thorough online poker strategy, you provide yourself with a blueprint that will simplify the process of self-improvement. When your poker strategy encompasses all 4 key areas of the game – preflop, flop, turn and river – it becomes easier to track which one is presenting you with the most difficulty (or costing you the most money) and honing in on it to shore up any leaks.

Poker Strategy - Setting Goals As A Player

Setting Goals As A Texas Holdem Poker Player

When setting goals as a Texas Holdem poker player it’s important to first determine which of the two main types of player you are: a recreational player or an aspiring poker professional. If you consider yourself a recreational player and have no plans to try to make a career of it, your primary goals should be to have fun as well as to conserve your bankroll. Because if you’re not having fun what’s the point of playing; and if you’ve lost your entire bankroll, it’s going to be tough to have much more poker fun.

And if learning how to be a poker professional is the ultimate goal, your short-terms goals need to be constant improvement of your biggest weaknesses – or “leaks”. That’s because, over the long-run, eliminating problem-areas that are likely to present themselves time and time again (for example, playing too many hands, or too few) will vastly outperform almost anything else you can do to improve your bottom line.

In addition, two other goals that new players often spend too little time on achieving is becoming proficient at both bankroll management and emotional control. In fact, it is likely that no other factors have ended more poker careers than these two, so making them areas of extreme focus when setting goals as a poker player is absolutely mandatory.

Texas Holdem Poker Strategy Misconceptions

Although the number of poker strategy misconceptions are as varied as the players themselves, they are all equally destructive to your bottom line. Some of the most common (and harmful) poker strategy misconceptions include:

PokerStrategy - Luck Is Not Involved

Because you play well, you deserve to win

And although we can debate the validity of that statement, the more important to take away is that luck IS involved, lots of it in fact. And that’s a good thing! If not for luck, every WSOP event would be won by a professional, Chris Moneymaker’s industry-changing win would never have happened, and at a vast majority of us would have been wiped out before we ever had a chance to improve. So the next time you make the right decision only to watch the chips slide towards your opponent thanks to another river suck-out, thank the heavens for the luck that keeps the weaker players in the game long enough for us to get our chips back and then some.

Poker strategy doesn’t matter because poker is rigged

At this point in online poker history, with the amount of data collected and analyzed by thousands of separate people across the globe, if online poker was truly rigged not only would it have made every news-channel across the world, but none of the biggest online winners would have been able to replicate their successes in the live arena, and vice versa. But if we’ve seen anything from the evolution of online poker over the past decade it’s that many of the best and brightest online poker minds have dominated the live scene as well and are now considered household names (Tom Dwan for example, or Fedor Holz, or Doug Polk).

So if you’re going to be dedicated serious time to working on your online poker strategy, make sure to eliminate this strategy misconception from your mind before you begin.

Now that we’ve covered the reasons for having a comprehensive online poker strategy, and some key ways to begin applying it, let’s turn to some basic components of ways that manifest at the table.

ONLINE POKER STRATEGY - PROCESS

1. How to play Texas Holdem?

When it comes to learning how to play poker, nothing is more accurate than the famous poker saying

“poker takes 5-minutes to learn and a lifetime to master”

With that said, the basic premise of the game is that each player at the table is dealt two cards before a round of betting occurs, this is known as preflop. When all players have had a chance to act (with their options being fold, call, or raise), 3 community cards are dealt face up on the table and another round of betting occurs, this is known as the flop. When betting concludes another communal card is turned up and the process repeats again, this is known as the turn.

Finally, a 5th communal card is placed on the table and one last round of betting occurs, this is known as the river. When all betting has been completed on the river, the remaining players reveal their cards and the one with the highest-ranking hand (in order high-card, 1 pair, two pairs, three of a kind, straight, flush, full-house, four of a kind, straight flush, royal flush) wins the pot.

Poker Strategy - Which Hands Should I Play

2. Which Texas Holdem hands should you play?

Once again, this is a question that takes a lifetime to master and depends heavily on the game-format and level of skill both you and your opponents possess. In a standard 9 or 10-handed cash-game for example, you should be playing extremely tight from early-position – nothing but top tier hands with maybe a couple of speculative suited-connectors to balance your value range. However, in a 3-handed jackpot-poker game, you should routinely be playing 40-60% of your hands to start and even more once the blinds increase. In some situations, namely as the big-stack on the bubble of a Sit & Go tournament, there are times where you can profitably play 100% of your hands to put max pressure on your short-stack opponents.

3. How many chips are given in Texas Holdem?

With a near-infinite number of poker variations in existence, there really isn’t a set number of chips in Texas Holdem. Cash games usually begin with 100-200 Big Blinds, fast-action ‘hyperturbo’ games can have as few as 300 chips, low-stake tournaments usually begin with stack sizes of 1500-3000, and major events like the World Series Of Poker often give participants chips 3x the size of their entry, meaning that a $10,000 buyin event would start players off with 30,000 chips.

4. Who gets the first card in Texas Holdem?

In Texas Holdem poker, the dealer begins dealing by giving a card to the person sitting in the Small Blind (the smaller of two forced bets that serve to encourage action) to left of the Button. The dealer then continues dealing clockwise, ending with the Button.

5. How to calculate outs in Texas Holdem/How to calculate odds in Texas Holdem?

In poker, an ‘out’ is a card that improves one’s hand in some manner. For example, if you’re unlucky enough to be holding a pair of kings when your opponent shows a pair of aces after the turn, your ‘outs’ are either of the remaining two kings in the deck. Or in other words, 2 of the 52 cards in the deck.

However, since 8 of the cards have already been exposed (your two kings, your opponent’s two aces, and the 4 communal cards on the board), we express your outs at 2/46 meaning that you have approximately a 4.5% chance to ‘hit your outs’ and win the hand.

6. Can you count cards in Texas Holdem?

Since poker is played with only one deck – which is shuffled between each hand – there is no such thing as ‘counting cards’ like there is in Blackjack. In poker each hand is played independently of previous hands other than the fact that stack-sizes are continually changing from one hand to the next.

Poker Strategy - Texas Holdem Tips And Tricks

Texas Holdem Tips & Tricks

In closing, there are many ways not just to play poker, but also to learn how to play poker. With that in mind, here are some Texas Holdem tips and tricks that will help you understand how to get better at poker.

1. Learn the Texas Holdem rules and poker card rankings.

This is an obvious one, but in poker, just as in life, you can’t learn to walk until you learn to crawl, so make sure to learn how to play poker the right way by watching poker tutorials on YouTube or reading poker strategy articles such as this to make sure you understand all the basics of the game like the rules of the specific game-format you’re playing as well as Holdem hand rankings.

2. Practice Texas Holdem online

No matter which type of poker strategy you choose to follow, it’s important that when you begin learning how to play poker, you practice playing Texas Holdem as much as you possibly can. That’s because many of your competitors may be very experienced in the game and as such your only edge at the beginning will be how hard you’re willing to work to catch up.

3. Develop strategies for different formats of Texas Holdem

Whether it’s cash game poker strategy, poker tournament strategy, or poker sit & go strategy, each variation has its own unique features that will help you develop different areas of your game. Therefore, regardless which discipline you plan to specialize it, make sure to expand your repertoire by expanding your poker practice to include as many game-variants as possible. If you can do that while continuously working to improve your Texas Holdem strategy, it’s only a matter of time before you transform yourself from the mark, to the shark! Good luck!

A Comprehensive Introduction to Texas Holdem Poker Strategy

Texas Holdem: Poker-Strategy

Over the past two decades Texas Holdem Poker has exploded in popularity thanks to the growth of online poker and entertainment content vehicles like the WSOP and High-Stakes Poker broadcasts.

Unfortunately, the most common path players take when finding the game is splashing around the online poker tables without a real grasp of Texas Holdem poker strategy, a reality that’s caused more than a few players to get wiped out in a hurry and never come back.

That’s why online poker amateurs and hopefuls would be wise to spend significant time thinking through and putting together at least a baseline of strategy that will enable them to withstand the growing pains and the incredible variance inherent in the game. So let’s take a look at getting that process started by breaking it down into two sections: Reason & Process.

ONLINE POKER STRATEGY - REASON

Key Benefits Of Having An Online Poker Strategy Plan

1. Play more tables

When your online poker strategy is set from the get-go, when you know which poker hands you want to play from which position, when you know which poker hands you want to 3-bet in position when you already know what percentage of poker hands you want to play in the Big Blind, it frees up a lot of brain-power, allowing you to add more tables and theoretically make more money (assuming you have a positive expectation in the games of course). When you’re not spending precious seconds trying to figure out how you want to play a flopped second pair in position, for example, you buy yourself some much needed time for the more complicated decisions you’ll undoubtedly face, like how to play against a turn check-raise on a wide range of board textures.

By setting up your online poker strategy ahead of time – and understanding it thoroughly enough to automate many of your most common decisions – the ability to increase the number of tables you play goes from a suboptimal idea based largely on impatience to a profitable winnings-per-hour calculation.

2. Tilt less

Of all the different forms of tilt – and there are many – one of the most destructive is uncertainty tilt, when you’ve made a play that failed to work out and now you’re sitting there stewing in frustration and self-doubt spending valuable emotional energy trying to figure out whether you played the hand well or just made a colossal mistake that might end up costing you the tournament (or a full stack in a cash game).

By having an online poker strategy in place before you take your seat at the table, you eliminate this type of indecision, allowing you to preserve the emotional energy that will be required to keep a balanced head the next time you take a particularly painful bad beat.

3. Simplified path to improvement

When learning how to play Texas Holdem, one of the most powerful tools for improvement you have at your disposal is the ability to self-analyze. By creating a thorough online poker strategy, you provide yourself with a blueprint that will simplify the process of self-improvement. When your poker strategy encompasses all 4 key areas of the game – preflop, flop, turn and river – it becomes easier to track which one is presenting you with the most difficulty (or costing you the most money) and honing in on it to shore up any leaks.

Poker Strategy - Setting Goals As A Player

Setting Goals As A Texas Holdem Poker Player

When setting goals as a Texas Holdem poker player it’s important to first determine which of the two main types of player you are: a recreational player or an aspiring poker professional. If you consider yourself a recreational player and have no plans to try to make a career of it, your primary goals should be to have fun as well as to conserve your bankroll. Because if you’re not having fun what’s the point of playing; and if you’ve lost your entire bankroll, it’s going to be tough to have much more poker fun.

And if learning how to be a poker professional is the ultimate goal, your short-terms goals need to be constant improvement of your biggest weaknesses – or “leaks”. That’s because, over the long-run, eliminating problem-areas that are likely to present themselves time and time again (for example, playing too many hands, or too few) will vastly outperform almost anything else you can do to improve your bottom line.

In addition, two other goals that new players often spend too little time on achieving is becoming proficient at both bankroll management and emotional control. In fact, it is likely that no other factors have ended more poker careers than these two, so making them areas of extreme focus when setting goals as a poker player is absolutely mandatory.

Texas Holdem Poker Strategy Misconceptions

Although the number of poker strategy misconceptions are as varied as the players themselves, they are all equally destructive to your bottom line. Some of the most common (and harmful) poker strategy misconceptions include:

PokerStrategy - Luck Is Not Involved

Because you play well, you deserve to win

And although we can debate the validity of that statement, the more important to take away is that luck IS involved, lots of it in fact. And that’s a good thing! If not for luck, every WSOP event would be won by a professional, Chris Moneymaker’s industry-changing win would never have happened, and at a vast majority of us would have been wiped out before we ever had a chance to improve. So the next time you make the right decision only to watch the chips slide towards your opponent thanks to another river suck-out, thank the heavens for the luck that keeps the weaker players in the game long enough for us to get our chips back and then some.

Poker strategy doesn’t matter because poker is rigged

At this point in online poker history, with the amount of data collected and analyzed by thousands of separate people across the globe, if online poker was truly rigged not only would it have made every news-channel across the world, but none of the biggest online winners would have been able to replicate their successes in the live arena, and vice versa. But if we’ve seen anything from the evolution of online poker over the past decade it’s that many of the best and brightest online poker minds have dominated the live scene as well and are now considered household names (Tom Dwan for example, or Fedor Holz, or Doug Polk).

So if you’re going to be dedicated serious time to working on your online poker strategy, make sure to eliminate this strategy misconception from your mind before you begin.

Now that we’ve covered the reasons for having a comprehensive online poker strategy, and some key ways to begin applying it, let’s turn to some basic components of ways that manifest at the table.

ONLINE POKER STRATEGY - PROCESS

1. How to play Texas Holdem?

When it comes to learning how to play poker, nothing is more accurate than the famous poker saying

“poker takes 5-minutes to learn and a lifetime to master”

With that said, the basic premise of the game is that each player at the table is dealt two cards before a round of betting occurs, this is known as preflop. When all players have had a chance to act (with their options being fold, call, or raise), 3 community cards are dealt face up on the table and another round of betting occurs, this is known as the flop. When betting concludes another communal card is turned up and the process repeats again, this is known as the turn.

Finally, a 5th communal card is placed on the table and one last round of betting occurs, this is known as the river. When all betting has been completed on the river, the remaining players reveal their cards and the one with the highest-ranking hand (in order high-card, 1 pair, two pairs, three of a kind, straight, flush, full-house, four of a kind, straight flush, royal flush) wins the pot.

Poker Strategy - Which Hands Should I Play

2. Which Texas Holdem hands should you play?

Once again, this is a question that takes a lifetime to master and depends heavily on the game-format and level of skill both you and your opponents possess. In a standard 9 or 10-handed cash-game for example, you should be playing extremely tight from early-position – nothing but top tier hands with maybe a couple of speculative suited-connectors to balance your value range. However, in a 3-handed jackpot-poker game, you should routinely be playing 40-60% of your hands to start and even more once the blinds increase. In some situations, namely as the big-stack on the bubble of a Sit & Go tournament, there are times where you can profitably play 100% of your hands to put max pressure on your short-stack opponents.

3. How many chips are given in Texas Holdem?

With a near-infinite number of poker variations in existence, there really isn’t a set number of chips in Texas Holdem. Cash games usually begin with 100-200 Big Blinds, fast-action ‘hyperturbo’ games can have as few as 300 chips, low-stake tournaments usually begin with stack sizes of 1500-3000, and major events like the World Series Of Poker often give participants chips 3x the size of their entry, meaning that a $10,000 buyin event would start players off with 30,000 chips.

4. Who gets the first card in Texas Holdem?

In Texas Holdem poker, the dealer begins dealing by giving a card to the person sitting in the Small Blind (the smaller of two forced bets that serve to encourage action) to left of the Button. The dealer then continues dealing clockwise, ending with the Button.

5. How to calculate outs in Texas Holdem/How to calculate odds in Texas Holdem?

In poker, an ‘out’ is a card that improves one’s hand in some manner. For example, if you’re unlucky enough to be holding a pair of kings when your opponent shows a pair of aces after the turn, your ‘outs’ are either of the remaining two kings in the deck. Or in other words, 2 of the 52 cards in the deck.

However, since 8 of the cards have already been exposed (your two kings, your opponent’s two aces, and the 4 communal cards on the board), we express your outs at 2/46 meaning that you have approximately a 4.5% chance to ‘hit your outs’ and win the hand.

6. Can you count cards in Texas Holdem?

Since poker is played with only one deck – which is shuffled between each hand – there is no such thing as ‘counting cards’ like there is in Blackjack. In poker each hand is played independently of previous hands other than the fact that stack-sizes are continually changing from one hand to the next.

Poker Strategy - Texas Holdem Tips And Tricks

Texas Holdem Tips & Tricks

In closing, there are many ways not just to play poker, but also to learn how to play poker. With that in mind, here are some Texas Holdem tips and tricks that will help you understand how to get better at poker.

1. Learn the Texas Holdem rules and poker card rankings.

This is an obvious one, but in poker, just as in life, you can’t learn to walk until you learn to crawl, so make sure to learn how to play poker the right way by watching poker tutorials on YouTube or reading poker strategy articles such as this to make sure you understand all the basics of the game like the rules of the specific game-format you’re playing as well as Holdem hand rankings.

2. Practice Texas Holdem online

No matter which type of poker strategy you choose to follow, it’s important that when you begin learning how to play poker, you practice playing Texas Holdem as much as you possibly can. That’s because many of your competitors may be very experienced in the game and as such your only edge at the beginning will be how hard you’re willing to work to catch up.

3. Develop strategies for different formats of Texas Holdem

Whether it’s cash game poker strategy, poker tournament strategy, or poker sit & go strategy, each variation has its own unique features that will help you develop different areas of your game. Therefore, regardless which discipline you plan to specialize it, make sure to expand your repertoire by expanding your poker practice to include as many game-variants as possible. If you can do that while continuously working to improve your Texas Holdem strategy, it’s only a matter of time before you transform yourself from the mark, to the shark! Good luck!

A Comprehensive Introduction to Texas Holdem Poker Strategy

Texas Holdem: Poker-Strategy

Over the past two decades Texas Holdem Poker has exploded in popularity thanks to the growth of online poker and entertainment content vehicles like the WSOP and High-Stakes Poker broadcasts.

Unfortunately, the most common path players take when finding the game is splashing around the online poker tables without a real grasp of Texas Holdem poker strategy, a reality that’s caused more than a few players to get wiped out in a hurry and never come back.

That’s why online poker amateurs and hopefuls would be wise to spend significant time thinking through and putting together at least a baseline of strategy that will enable them to withstand the growing pains and the incredible variance inherent in the game. So let’s take a look at getting that process started by breaking it down into two sections: Reason & Process.

ONLINE POKER STRATEGY - REASON

Key Benefits Of Having An Online Poker Strategy Plan

1. Play more tables

When your online poker strategy is set from the get-go, when you know which poker hands you want to play from which position, when you know which poker hands you want to 3-bet in position when you already know what percentage of poker hands you want to play in the Big Blind, it frees up a lot of brain-power, allowing you to add more tables and theoretically make more money (assuming you have a positive expectation in the games of course). When you’re not spending precious seconds trying to figure out how you want to play a flopped second pair in position, for example, you buy yourself some much needed time for the more complicated decisions you’ll undoubtedly face, like how to play against a turn check-raise on a wide range of board textures.

By setting up your online poker strategy ahead of time – and understanding it thoroughly enough to automate many of your most common decisions – the ability to increase the number of tables you play goes from a suboptimal idea based largely on impatience to a profitable winnings-per-hour calculation.

2. Tilt less

Of all the different forms of tilt – and there are many – one of the most destructive is uncertainty tilt, when you’ve made a play that failed to work out and now you’re sitting there stewing in frustration and self-doubt spending valuable emotional energy trying to figure out whether you played the hand well or just made a colossal mistake that might end up costing you the tournament (or a full stack in a cash game).

By having an online poker strategy in place before you take your seat at the table, you eliminate this type of indecision, allowing you to preserve the emotional energy that will be required to keep a balanced head the next time you take a particularly painful bad beat.

3. Simplified path to improvement

When learning how to play Texas Holdem, one of the most powerful tools for improvement you have at your disposal is the ability to self-analyze. By creating a thorough online poker strategy, you provide yourself with a blueprint that will simplify the process of self-improvement. When your poker strategy encompasses all 4 key areas of the game – preflop, flop, turn and river – it becomes easier to track which one is presenting you with the most difficulty (or costing you the most money) and honing in on it to shore up any leaks.

Poker Strategy - Setting Goals As A Player

Setting Goals As A Texas Holdem Poker Player

When setting goals as a Texas Holdem poker player it’s important to first determine which of the two main types of player you are: a recreational player or an aspiring poker professional. If you consider yourself a recreational player and have no plans to try to make a career of it, your primary goals should be to have fun as well as to conserve your bankroll. Because if you’re not having fun what’s the point of playing; and if you’ve lost your entire bankroll, it’s going to be tough to have much more poker fun.

And if learning how to be a poker professional is the ultimate goal, your short-terms goals need to be constant improvement of your biggest weaknesses – or “leaks”. That’s because, over the long-run, eliminating problem-areas that are likely to present themselves time and time again (for example, playing too many hands, or too few) will vastly outperform almost anything else you can do to improve your bottom line.

In addition, two other goals that new players often spend too little time on achieving is becoming proficient at both bankroll management and emotional control. In fact, it is likely that no other factors have ended more poker careers than these two, so making them areas of extreme focus when setting goals as a poker player is absolutely mandatory.

Texas Holdem Poker Strategy Misconceptions

Although the number of poker strategy misconceptions are as varied as the players themselves, they are all equally destructive to your bottom line. Some of the most common (and harmful) poker strategy misconceptions include:

PokerStrategy - Luck Is Not Involved

Because you play well, you deserve to win

And although we can debate the validity of that statement, the more important to take away is that luck IS involved, lots of it in fact. And that’s a good thing! If not for luck, every WSOP event would be won by a professional, Chris Moneymaker’s industry-changing win would never have happened, and at a vast majority of us would have been wiped out before we ever had a chance to improve. So the next time you make the right decision only to watch the chips slide towards your opponent thanks to another river suck-out, thank the heavens for the luck that keeps the weaker players in the game long enough for us to get our chips back and then some.

Poker strategy doesn’t matter because poker is rigged

At this point in online poker history, with the amount of data collected and analyzed by thousands of separate people across the globe, if online poker was truly rigged not only would it have made every news-channel across the world, but none of the biggest online winners would have been able to replicate their successes in the live arena, and vice versa. But if we’ve seen anything from the evolution of online poker over the past decade it’s that many of the best and brightest online poker minds have dominated the live scene as well and are now considered household names (Tom Dwan for example, or Fedor Holz, or Doug Polk).

So if you’re going to be dedicated serious time to working on your online poker strategy, make sure to eliminate this strategy misconception from your mind before you begin.

Now that we’ve covered the reasons for having a comprehensive online poker strategy, and some key ways to begin applying it, let’s turn to some basic components of ways that manifest at the table.

ONLINE POKER STRATEGY - PROCESS

1. How to play Texas Holdem?

When it comes to learning how to play poker, nothing is more accurate than the famous poker saying

“poker takes 5-minutes to learn and a lifetime to master”

With that said, the basic premise of the game is that each player at the table is dealt two cards before a round of betting occurs, this is known as preflop. When all players have had a chance to act (with their options being fold, call, or raise), 3 community cards are dealt face up on the table and another round of betting occurs, this is known as the flop. When betting concludes another communal card is turned up and the process repeats again, this is known as the turn.

Finally, a 5th communal card is placed on the table and one last round of betting occurs, this is known as the river. When all betting has been completed on the river, the remaining players reveal their cards and the one with the highest-ranking hand (in order high-card, 1 pair, two pairs, three of a kind, straight, flush, full-house, four of a kind, straight flush, royal flush) wins the pot.

Poker Strategy - Which Hands Should I Play

2. Which Texas Holdem hands should you play?

Once again, this is a question that takes a lifetime to master and depends heavily on the game-format and level of skill both you and your opponents possess. In a standard 9 or 10-handed cash-game for example, you should be playing extremely tight from early-position – nothing but top tier hands with maybe a couple of speculative suited-connectors to balance your value range. However, in a 3-handed jackpot-poker game, you should routinely be playing 40-60% of your hands to start and even more once the blinds increase. In some situations, namely as the big-stack on the bubble of a Sit & Go tournament, there are times where you can profitably play 100% of your hands to put max pressure on your short-stack opponents.

3. How many chips are given in Texas Holdem?

With a near-infinite number of poker variations in existence, there really isn’t a set number of chips in Texas Holdem. Cash games usually begin with 100-200 Big Blinds, fast-action ‘hyperturbo’ games can have as few as 300 chips, low-stake tournaments usually begin with stack sizes of 1500-3000, and major events like the World Series Of Poker often give participants chips 3x the size of their entry, meaning that a $10,000 buyin event would start players off with 30,000 chips.

4. Who gets the first card in Texas Holdem?

In Texas Holdem poker, the dealer begins dealing by giving a card to the person sitting in the Small Blind (the smaller of two forced bets that serve to encourage action) to left of the Button. The dealer then continues dealing clockwise, ending with the Button.

5. How to calculate outs in Texas Holdem/How to calculate odds in Texas Holdem?

In poker, an ‘out’ is a card that improves one’s hand in some manner. For example, if you’re unlucky enough to be holding a pair of kings when your opponent shows a pair of aces after the turn, your ‘outs’ are either of the remaining two kings in the deck. Or in other words, 2 of the 52 cards in the deck.

However, since 8 of the cards have already been exposed (your two kings, your opponent’s two aces, and the 4 communal cards on the board), we express your outs at 2/46 meaning that you have approximately a 4.5% chance to ‘hit your outs’ and win the hand.

6. Can you count cards in Texas Holdem?

Since poker is played with only one deck – which is shuffled between each hand – there is no such thing as ‘counting cards’ like there is in Blackjack. In poker each hand is played independently of previous hands other than the fact that stack-sizes are continually changing from one hand to the next.

Poker Strategy - Texas Holdem Tips And Tricks

Texas Holdem Tips & Tricks

In closing, there are many ways not just to play poker, but also to learn how to play poker. With that in mind, here are some Texas Holdem tips and tricks that will help you understand how to get better at poker.

1. Learn the Texas Holdem rules and poker card rankings.

This is an obvious one, but in poker, just as in life, you can’t learn to walk until you learn to crawl, so make sure to learn how to play poker the right way by watching poker tutorials on YouTube or reading poker strategy articles such as this to make sure you understand all the basics of the game like the rules of the specific game-format you’re playing as well as Holdem hand rankings.

2. Practice Texas Holdem online

No matter which type of poker strategy you choose to follow, it’s important that when you begin learning how to play poker, you practice playing Texas Holdem as much as you possibly can. That’s because many of your competitors may be very experienced in the game and as such your only edge at the beginning will be how hard you’re willing to work to catch up.

3. Develop strategies for different formats of Texas Holdem

Whether it’s cash game poker strategy, poker tournament strategy, or poker sit & go strategy, each variation has its own unique features that will help you develop different areas of your game. Therefore, regardless which discipline you plan to specialize it, make sure to expand your repertoire by expanding your poker practice to include as many game-variants as possible. If you can do that while continuously working to improve your Texas Holdem strategy, it’s only a matter of time before you transform yourself from the mark, to the shark! Good luck!