Poker has been described as “a hard way to make an easy living.” Despite the efforts that players go through to win games either professionally or just for leisure, they fail to understand that poker is more than a game of strategy: it’s a psychological evaluation of other players, a self-discipline to remain calm, and a call for creativity to find new game plans and surprise opponents. Since players’ moves are unpredictable, everyone around the table must always adapt to their surroundings and come up with innovative strategies to counteract one another’s moves. To do that, a player needs to keep a few tips and tricks of their own to win the rounds:
1) Don’t start playing without knowing the rules. Many players assume that if they watch or ask about the rules of the game, they’ll get the hang of it well enough to take part in the game itself. The fact is that if a player doesn’t try the game out for themselves and know all the rules that abide with each move and decision, they won’t be able to win a fair round later on.
2) Your opponent is not less than you—if anything, he’s your equal and better. Don’t forget that your rival’s hand could be just as strong as yours, so pay close attention to how they react. If you feel that their reactions mean that he/she has a better hand, then be prepared to fold. Don’t push past your limits just to keep your pride intact.
3) Pay attention to how the game is played. This is closely linked to paying attention to your opponents: their timing, expression, pauses, and glances are all hints to what they are thinking of playing next and if they are confident about their own hand. Though you need to pay attention to them, you also need to focus on the cards on the table, so you’re aware of what cards your opponents don’t need and what hand they may be holding.
4) Never play with high limits. By the time you become experienced enough to play poker on a more regular basis, you should already know what your abilities consist of and what your limitations are for the game. More importantly, you should already be aware of your bankroll and how much you’re willing to risk.
5) Always bluffing throughout the game won’t give you an advantage. Though there’s no rule in poker saying that there’s a limit to how many times you can tell a lie, bluffing only works against certain opponents. Lying in poker lessens its value and effectiveness if a player uses it too much as a defense against others. Occasional bluffs and more honest play will get a player further than just lying about their hand most of the time. Poker is a game of leisure, wits and amateur survival. Players can either play in all seriousness and take it professionally or they can play for recreational purposes to pass the time. No matter what the purpose behind the game may be, following basic and simple tips would help improve not only the gameplay of a player, but the game itself.