Just starting out as a poker player? Know the basics of poker but don’t win as much as you thought you would? Check out a few tips to know what are the few common mistakes every rookie poker player makes in the beginning.
1. Playing All or Most Hands
Are you laughing at this one? We’ve all been in this position when we started out playing poker. We learn the basics and couldn’t wait to start being in the midst of the action. After all, we thought, this is how you learn, how hard could it be?
You over called your low pocket pairs, overbet a mediocre hand on the turn, hoping for fates to ‘Turn’ the river to your advantage. That’s not skill, that’s not the strategy, that’s gambling because you are waiting for luck to turn the tides in your favor, instead of really playing and getting value on a good hand.
2. Marrying a Hand
Everybody has a favorite hand, one that they have always won with, historically and have become attached to it.
Because poker is such a competitive game, we often think, especially in the beginning, that ‘giving up’ or ‘folding’, when we have in hand our favorite set of hole cards, is a bad thing. We get emotionally attached to a hand because we don’t want to necessarily get bluffed out of the pot, or if we are bluffing, let the other people know that we have a weaker hand with respect to the cards on the table.
Unfortunately, this doesn't work in your favor because by continuously calling bets you are never sure of where you stand in the hand before it is too late. You may have an AceKing up your sleeve, but if the board is not with you, and the others have better hands that respond to the 5 cards laid out on the table, you cant really do anything about it.
3. Improper Bet Sizes
Learning how to correctly size your bets in poker (no limit and pot limit games) to manipulate the table comes with the experience of playing poker regularly. Most newbies either underbet or overbet, always hovering on the extremes and giving away their hands to the more experienced players.
For example, newbies often raise the pot 5x-6x the size of the blinds preflop or when they are out of position.
Miss sizing bets also happen after the flop where newbies with big hands under bet even though there are many hands in the game, allowing them to cheaply draw to a better hand. Sometimes overbetting is done to ‘Protect’ the hand, In most cases, this behavior on the table is incorrect as ideally, you would want to bet an amount that maximizes how much one can win and minimize the loss.
4. Buckling under Table Talk
Table talk is an art that of course, the poor poker noob takes time to get used to. The more experienced player applies various subtle techniques to intimidate his opponent and get to know more about their hand by just, talking and creating a certain kind of pressure. Most noobs buckle under the pressure and either fold their hand or over call/ wrongly bet to reveal their hand to the rest of the table.
5. Playing on Scared Money
Scared Money in poker is the amount /chips that a poker player is reluctant to use even though it is part of his bankroll because he is nervous about losing it while playing.
In the beginning, all newbies are scared money, and that can be because they haven’t played the game too much, don’t understand the strength of their hand or haven’t planned their bankroll funding properly and are unsure of how to curb their loss while playing the game.
What one needs to understand is that the amount you have kept aside as bankroll, cannot be expected to be recovered each time and the beauty of the game is in remaining in the present and playing the hand dealt to you, as skillfully as possible. Scared money never really gets you anywhere. You will not be able to focus on reading the table or plan your next move against the player next to you.