Finding yourself having a losing streak? We’ve got some new tips for you to get back in the black. Take a look!
Deal with Tilt
Unless you are Edward Woodward or Denzel Washington, getting mad is far easier than getting even. Getting mad at a poker table can spell disaster for your hard-won chips.
Try to recognize when you get angry due to other players, or due to the variance of the game. Then make a conscious decision about whether you should continue playing.
If you’re in a tournament, your options to leave are limited. But you can try to evaluate what your tournament goal is (if you lost a big pot, for instance). Are you still aiming for the final table, or should you now consolidate and make sure you don’t bubble?
Make the best of the situation, because if you make it worse by overreacting, you are the one who will have to face the consequences.
To avoid getting into negative situations, try to avoid tables which have the potential for red flags particular to you.
Be wary of sitting with players who are difficult to play with, for whatever reason. Whether it be their chat, style of play, or any ‘history’ between you.
On the other hand, gravitate toward players who are easily separated from their chips. Make your time count.
If you’re looking for a friendly, chatty game, give the tables with the disruptive try-hards a miss.
If it is possible, try to take a seat which puts you in a beneficial position, considering any known tendencies of your opponents.
Try to sit to the left of a solid player. When they bet, they are letting you know they have a strong hand, and you can easily pass up any marginal situations.
You want to be on the right of bad players, particularly loose cannons. Closing the action on them after you see how everyone else responds to their bets is better than being the first to face their bets and have the whole table behind you with potentially better hands than you have.
Not Your Game
If none of the tables you see suit you, be patient. Try a lower stake game for a while, or simply observe. If there is an abundance of strong players you prefer to avoid, have a look at some of their hands when they are in a showdown and see if you can learn anything from them. Take notes.
Sit at an empty table and see who joins. Maybe you should polish up your shorthanded strategy, so you’re comfortable playing before the table fills up.
Play it Again, Sam
Make sure to study replays. Not just the terrible bad beats, but also the hands you win. In all your losing hands, ask yourself if you really were compelled to commit those chips.
When you win a pot, ask yourself if you could have made more profit, even with moderate winning hands.
It is not always convenient to replay a hand in real time, but you should make a note of hand IDs or think about it when you are not involved in a hand shortly after.
Learn about bet sizing, also known as ‘value betting,’ by watching better players. Checking or betting to pot is not binary. In hand replays you may come to appreciate some of the subtleties they have in their game which you too can adopt. For example, mixing in complete bluffs or bets designed to encourage opponents to look you up with weaker hands.