If you want to make it big at online poker, then you need to know the basic principles of this game and how to play them correctly. With so many players competing for top spots in tournaments, it’s easy to fall into some common mistakes that can cost you your tournament seat or even cause you to lose money when sitting out a hand. But with practice, anyone can learn not only how to win but also how to avoid losing. Here are six common errors made by new online poker players.
Mistake #1: Not Taking Advantage of Free Chips While They Last
The best way to get ahead at any casino is to take advantage of free chips while they last. You’ll likely be sitting around waiting for a table to open up, and you don’t have to play with all of your hands. So why risk it? Take advantage of the free chips you receive from your first few hands. This can mean playing a very small number of hands, as long as each one pays off well. For example, if you’re playing $0.50/$1 No-Limit Hold’Em, you might choose to play two or three hands before deciding whether to continue. Once you’re ready to call it quits, just wait until your next round of free chips comes along.
Mistake #2: Playing Too Many Hands
Playing too many hands means losing more than you would if you played fewer hands — especially if you’re making bad decisions along the way. The most important thing to remember about playing too many hands is to stick to the plan. That plan should include using an aggressive strategy such as Pot-Elimination (where you bet high enough to put pressure on others to fold). If you find yourself trying to “pick up” additional pots, then you may be betting too much without actually winning. It’s also possible to go too deep in your stack and become too exposed to other players. If you’re going to play more than 10 hands in a row, consider calling it a night.
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Mistake #3: Using Your Cards Wrong
When playing a hand, you should always try to use your cards optimally. For example, if you hold a pair of 6s, you may want to check instead of raising because you think that someone else holds a better hand. Or if you hold an ace and a 7, you might want to consider folding, since someone has likely already folded his/her hand. Always use your cards appropriately. And never bluff!
Mistake #4: Failing to Check Before Calling
A lot of newer online gamers fail to check their opponent’s hole cards before making a decision to call or raise. The reason for this is understandable; it’s hard to see what you’d be missing if you don’t look at the cards. But this is a mistake that most seasoned gamblers will tell you to avoid. By failing to do this, you run the risk of being called down. There are several reasons for this. First, if you don’t look at your opponent’s cards, you’ll miss potential tells. A tell is anything that indicates your opponent doesn’t have the cards he/she says he/she does. Second, if you don’t look at the cards, you won’t notice how strong your own hand is. You could end up raising when you really shouldn’t, or calling when you should’ve raised. Finally, if you don’t look at the cards, your opponent may catch on and call you down with a weak hand. It’s easy to see why checking before calling is a good idea.
Mistake #5: Making a Bad Call
It’s easy to say that you should never call when the flop comes down 3-6-7. Especially when you’re holding pocket kings against a king who checks behind. But you should listen to your instincts. Sometimes you’re right to call and sometimes you’re wrong. Don’t be afraid to call a very weak hand like KQ when the board turns up 2-8-J. And don’t be afraid to call a great hand like QT when the board turns up 8-9-10. But again, always trust your instinct. If you feel like you’ve got the right hand, then do it. If you feel you’ve got the wrong hand, then don’t.
Mistake #6: Being Unwilling to Fold
Folding is an essential part of poker. Everyone plays differently, but most people agree that the best player wins every time. When you fold, you’re giving away a portion of your stack. However, if you’re folding every hand that’s not working, you’re losing to someone who isn’t. So be sure to play aggressively. If you have a hand that you think is good, then play it. Otherwise, fold. This goes double in tournaments. In multi-table tournaments, you should only play if you believe that you have a viable chance of winning. Otherwise, you’re risking nothing by folding.
Online gambling is a huge industry, and it’s growing every day. For those interested in learning more about the world of online poker, there’s plenty of information available. If you’re looking to play online, then the best place to start is by signing up for a no-deposit casino bonus. And if you’re hoping to build a bankroll while playing online, then you should read our article on the best places to play online poker.