Introduction to Bankroll Management for Sit And Go Tournaments

Good Bankroll Management is Critical for SNG Success, this article looks at
what size bankroll Sit N Go Players should work with for the most poker profits.

Good Bankroll Management is a critical success factor in any form of poker. In fact poker history is full of examples of great players ending up broke due to not managing their poker bankroll correctly.

Sit And Go Bankroll Management - The Key To Good Bankroll Management in SNGs

You need to have enough buy-ins to ensure that you do not go broke due to the natural swings (variance) of the game. The question is then - what are the swings that a SNG player can expect?

This will depend on the buy-in level at which you play and your profitability. Large sample-size surveys have found that - statistically speaking - even a Winning SNG player will experience a downswing of 20+ buy-ins once every 500 games. That is not to say everyone will experience this - the nature of an average means that some people will see less variance while others will see more. To many new players, particularly those who start off on a decent run of results, a 20 buy-in downswing can feel hard to believe. Statistics from millions of games, and analysis of the very best players show that this is actually extremely common. If you play long enough there is a very good chance of a 50+ buy-in downswing in your future, even if you are a solid winning player! There is no need to be too down about this idea - remember you will experience the good side of variance too!

Sit And Go Bankroll Management - Protecting Yourself From The Natural Variance Of Poker Games

So how can you protect against these swings of fortune? The answer is to ensure you have a big enough bankroll to withstand them. Most Pro SNG players recommend that the minimum requirement is 50 buy-ins for the level at which you play. Others suggest that a 100 buy-in SNG bankroll will effectively shield you from any thoughts / concerns about variance.

Here is what your 50 buy-in Bankroll should look like for the various levels.

$3+30 SNGs = $165

$5+50 SNGS = $275

$10+1 SNGs = $550

$20+2 SNGs = $1100

$25+2 SNGs = $1350

$30+3 SNGs = $1650

$55+5 SNGs = $3000

$100+9 SNGs = $5450

Another key to poker bankroll management is your ability to replenish your bankroll should you go broke. For some people, particularly those who play the occasional game for leisure purposes, this is not an issue - they can simply set aside a portion of their disposable income to cover this. For those people who rely on poker income (for example to see themselves through college) then it is important to maintain good discipline with your bankroll.

Planet Mark's Thoughts: It seems obvious that your profits (and so bankroll) will get a big boost from finding the softest games. In my experience, players get 'sticky', and end up playing at sites which are full of profitable regulars. If you do one thing for your bankroll this year, spend some time finding the softest, easiest to beat games.

For US players, this is a no-brainer, Bovada - with their recreational player policy - are bigger and softer than any other site.

SIt And Go Bankroll Management – Smart Players Re-Invest Their Gains

While we all love cashing out and enjoying the fruits of our efforts – the smartest players re-invest their profits in tools to help them make even bigger returns later. There are now many poker software tools available to help you plug leaks, assess opponent tendencies and act as real-time advice and odds calculators. Check out ICMIZER (there is a free trial) and see what a big difference knowing profitable push / fold strategy will make to your returns!

Sit And Go Bankroll Management - Individual Factors

These guidelines are based on a stereotype of the 'serious' or semi-pro player. There is another category of players who treat poker more as a liesure activity than an obsession! These players still want to win, and many of them do, however the strict bankroll management rules do not need to apply so strongly to them.

If you are able to reload your account every couple of months, and treat this as money well spent to have some fun playing poker, then I suggest 20 buy-ins as your guideline for playing Sit N Go tournaments. This will shield you from all but the worst downswings, and will be more of a challenge than playing for the smaller stakes.

Your style of play should also be factored in. Some players are naturally more loose and aggressive than others. Whether this is 'good' for the mechanical nature of Sit N Goes is debated elsewhere on this site. Here I will note that a tight and solid player will still experience variance, however this will not be anywhere near as big as the swings a Loose-Aggressive maniac would suffer. You can adjust the number of buy-ins based on your style, but just a little!


Sit And Go Bankroll Management - Different Games

This article focuses on the standard speed and turbo 9-handed games. With so many Sit N Go variations around these days, you need to be able to adjust your bankroll management to suit the variability of your results. Here are a few examples:

  • Hyper / Super Turbo Sit N Goes: Fast and crazy games, swings will be bigger in these, increase the guidline amounts by at least 50%
  • Double / Nothing or Fifty50: More get paid and very easy / mechanical strategy here, bankroll guidelines can be reduced a little.
  • Knockout Sit N Goes: More recreational feel / novice type players attracted to these games, though bounties do balance the increased variance, suggest the same bankroll as standard SNGs.
  • Steps Sit N Goes: A lot of smaller losses / try again spots and only the occasional big win. These games can still be profitable, but the wins will be a long time in coming (on average) increase your bankroll significantly.
  • Multi-Table Sit N Goes: Bigger wins for 1st, more losses, I advise standard bankroll practices for 2-table games, a little bigger for 45 player SNGs and 90 to 180 SNGs need MTT size bankrolls (100 buy-ins).

Sit And Go Bankroll Managment - When To Move Up Levels

Good bankroll discipline can provide you with an indicator of when to move up SNG levels. The '50 buy-in' rule means that the bankroll required for the next level is easy to assess. If you experience a negative run at the higher level then it becomes easy to drop back down and rebuild before taking another shot.I am a fan of taking the occasional shot, which will move you up earlier and give you a chance of making it big before life's other demands take over - you can do this easily in Sit N Goes when you win a few buy-ins for the next level up. As long as you have the discipline not to chase losses, you'll put yourself in a great position to go on a tear!

Why Are You Playing Against Online Poker Pros?

If you are playing against profitable regulars, your bankroll is experiencing a headwind that is difficult to overcome.

I recommend taking a time out, finding the softest games for your location - and watching your bankroll take off!

For US players, no site comes close to They have a recreational player model, anonymous games and tons of action. Go look for youself.



More On The Key Concepts Of Managing (and growing) Your Poker Bankroll

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