Planet Mark's Blog. Thoughts, News And Strategy For Poker Tournaments Of All Size

Halloween Cliche Post: 9 Scary Things You Do To Yourself At The Poker Tables!

Alright, it’s a cliché… though with Halloween everywhere around it is a great opportunity to remind you all of some scary habits which cost you money at the tables.

Of course, not everyone makes all of these scary mistakes. The way I look at things, you only need to correct one of them – and this post will have been a success.

Quick Note: This was originally the October Newsletter, only I liked the idea enough to transform it into a blog post. If you are not yet receiving the newsletter, this is sent once a month to those people who have enjoyed my (free) SNG Blueprint course. You can sign up right here

As an aside Planet Greg and I are working on a brand new section of the site (to be announced next week, with a blog post). You will also find a detailed blog post covering the business side of being a poker webmaster, and a detailed look at how Double or Nothing Sit N Goes have changed over the last few years. 

10 Scary Things People Do To Themselves at Online Poker Tables

#1 – Sitting in the first game with a free space.

Spending just 5 minutes making sure you are sitting with fish and not grinders can make such a huge difference to your bankroll that it amazes me how few recreational players do this. Tag those regulars, and if you see a lot of them in your Sit N Go (or a cash table), wait 10 minutes for some inexperienced opponents – this is the quickest win around.

#2 – Calling Big River Bets Too Often

Players at the lower buy-ins do not bluff often enough to make it profitable to call those big river bets. What is more they will make so many mistakes which involve paying you off, overplaying hands and missing thinner value that you simply don’t need to make hero calls without a solid read / reason.

#3 – Playing While Distracted

Sure, you are a better player than your opponents… so why give up your entire edge by chatting, surfing or watching TV while you play?

#4 – Playing At Grinder-Heavy Sites

I know PokerStars have the best software and the most games… but come on readers, have you not noticed that half of the players are grinders there? You can beat them, sure. Just stop and think how much better you could be doing playing at sites where 80% of your opponents are recreational… it makes me want to ‘scream’ when I hear excuses about this. Poker is as soft as ever, just not at PokerStars!

For some great ideas about the softest places to play, take my Fish-o-Meter for a spin!

#5 – Bluffing the Unbluffables

That fish should have seen what you were representing and folded his bad top pair, right? Well, no, wrong. If you try and bluff someone who is not capable of making that type of decision it is you that is the fish – not the other player. Those types will pay you off very nicely when you have a hand, there is no need to get fancy along the way.

#6 – Playing While Drunk / Stoned / Tired of Unwell

If you insist on any of these, why not make a separate account with just a few dollars in it and stick to the micros?

#7 – Skipping Your ‘Homework’

Players who are taking hands from their sessions and working through the math and strategy options away from the tables are giving themselves a massive edge. Just one hand per session can help improve your game… getting better is not something which happens by magic.

#8 – Jumping / Mixing Game Types

A Sit N Go, PLO cash game and a couple of tournaments all at once is not going to do anyone any favors. This joins with many other scary behaviors listed above like table and site selection. Learn one game (like Sit n Goes!), build a bankroll and then use that to grow your experience in other area instead.

#9– Multi-Tabling at Your Limit

Now, online pros multi table to get the most out of their hours. If you are a recreational player (even one who likes to win), do you really need to be playing 12 tables at once? This will suck your enjoyment of the game away, stop you improving strategically and may even kill your love of the game after a year or two. This Halloween, ask yourself whether those extra couple of dollars each hour are really worth turning into a poker playing robot for.

Whew, long newsletter!

If there is one take away for me it is to get away from the sites with too many pros.

888 Poker are currently hitting that sweet spot between large numbers of players and easy games. They are giving you up to $88 to try the tables out, no deposit needed too.

If you are US based then the big sports betting brand BetOnline are the place to head for easy games. You can read my detailed review here.

GL at the tables


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