One of the questions that are often asked by newbie poker players is where they can find the best poker strategy. It goes without saying that even though poker can be fun and exciting, players should be aware of just how competitive the poker tables can be and this might lead to some losses. The best players know how to utilize each poker game strategy they have mastered in order to better their chances of winning. It certainly takes time but once you have mastered enough of these, you will good to dive into an amazing gaming adventure.
If you are looking for a great poker strategy for beginners look no further because this guide details some of the best tips and tricks for newbies. All you need to do is figure out which ones work best for you in any given situation at the poker tables.
Poker Rules and Strategy for Beginners
Poker is, in most part, a very straightforward game despite the fact that there are several variants currently available. Now, keeping this in mind when people talk of the ‘basics of poker’ strategy or a ‘how to play poker’ strategy, the first thing that will pop is the need to get acquainted with the gameplay and the rules that govern the poker game that you will be playing.
Getting Started With the Rules
Any poker betting strategy will begin by highlighting the importance of getting acquainted with the rules of the game. Now, since there are several variants of poker, the rules may vary from one variant to the next. Thankfully, there are detailed guides on each of those poker variants. Still, there are some things that are typical of all these variants.
For instance, the winner of each hand of poker will be the player that holds the highest-ranking hand during the showdown. Some games such as Omaha Hi-Lo switch things up a bit. In essence, no poker rules are universally followed as you will come to find out. That said, in addition to the basic gameplay rules governing a particular poker variant of poker, the players can also set some “house rules”.
Basic Strategies for Novices
As a newbie, a simple poker strategy is all that you need to get going. It all starts with having the rules, the positions, and the poker hands ranking of the game you are a part of at your fingertips. While it might take quite a bit of time to truly master the game, it is very important to take as much time as you need to understand all of the aforementioned concepts. Knowing about the hand rankings, for instance, means that you will be able to quickly make decisions without having to second guess the value of the cards in any hand.
On the same note, mastering the concept of position in a game of poker is a very asset. Being in position simply means that you get to act after one or more of your opponents and thus are able to see what they do before you make a decision about your next move. Take your time with the decisions that you make in order to ensure that it leads to the best possible outcome – this might be tough especially if you are playing at multiple tables but it is not recommended to do this as a beginner.
Playing poker fun is super fun and exciting but it is advisable to be patient with yourself at the beginning. We would recommend starting at the lower stakes, a move that only keeps you from risking a lot of money but also lets you have a deeper insight into what the particular game is all about. You can then gradually raise your stakes as you continue to raise your skill level.
Speaking of building your skill level, it is important to note that this will be dependent on the games or poker tables that you play at. Your choice should be based on your skill level as well as your bankroll. Picking a great table not only means that you stand a better chance of winning but also that you are able to test out some strategies and skills that you can use at higher levels.
Bluffing is definitely a widely used skill in poker games but as much as it is always fronted as a great strategy, it is important to use it only when appropriate. In most cases, some players especially those that are just starting out, may use it as a substitute for playing their cards well. An occasional bluff is definitely fine but do not make it a habit. Moreover, even the best bluffs are backed by a lot of knowledge about the game and one’s opponents. A lot of practice and solid poker face is needed for this.
Poker Strategy Chart
Charts are very popular in poker. Whether you are looking for one that details winning hands or one that offers some insight into the best starting hands, you will find something for you. There are lots of great strategy charts that are certainly going to make things much easier for you. One of the charts we found can be considered as the most optimal poker strategy guide for just about any player.
It may not guarantee wins since poker still involves some element of luck but it is a great place to start. Mastering it all at once can be a little daunting so you will have to take your time to study and understand it.
Here it is:Download poker-strategy-chart-for-beginners.png for FREE (42kb)
Poker Cash Game Strategy (For Beginners)
In addition to some of the basic strategies that we mentioned earlier, every cash poker game will need players to use a cash poker strategy. These strategies are very easy to understand and therefore even beginners can comfortably use them.
Perhaps the best place to start would be by paying even more attention to table game selection. We would recommend that you try to find a balance between skill level and the profitability of the tables you are playing at. Usually, the most profitable tables are those with a large number of players.
Next, since real money is on the line when playing at cash games, bankroll management is very important. Proper bankroll management means that you never have to worry about losing more than you can afford to. Besides, you get to enjoy the poker action for longer if you manage your funds well.
Playing to win at cash games also means that you need to protect your hand. There are several ways through which you can protect your hands and it all starts with paying attention to basic things like the starting hands, and the blinds. A great way of protecting your hand in cases where you are in a bad situation is buying in for the minimum. This will keep you from getting into even more difficult situations in the course of the game.
If you are playing deep-stack cash games, position will certainly be a huge factor. You will always want to be in position since being out of position puts you at a disadvantage if you are not short-stacked. This is because your opponents will be able to see the decisions you make and possibly act based on that. Still, whether you are in or out of position, you should play cautiously by taking the time to review your decision before acting.
Hyper-Aggressive Poker Strategy
This would not be the ultimate poker strategy guide if we did not include any information on aggressive play. While hyper aggressive play is harder to master, with a bit of time and loads of practice, even beginners can figure out how to use these strategies to their advantage. When implemented properly, these can give the player an even bigger edge over their opponents.
Perhaps the most notable hyper aggressive poker strategy for beginners involves being on the offensive, that is, by identifying and exploiting the weaker players at the poker table. It will, of course, be easier if you are playing with the same opponents over and over again. However, since you will always be facing new opponents at new poker tables, it is important to take time to understand how they play and try to use that knowledge to your advantage.
Earlier in this guide, we mentioned that you should not bluff when it is not necessary. Well, at the more advanced stages, bluffing is an aggressive strategy that you should not shy away from – so long as you are doing it right. Bluffing can be effective when you notice that your opponent might not have strong hands or when using blockers. Also, as much as you may be bluffing from time to time, it is important to be able to catch bluffs from your opponents.
Aggressive play also involves adjusting between your strategies as best as you can. You will need to identify the hands that might be in your opponent’s hands as well as their skill levels in order to effectively be able to switch to appropriate strategies. For instance, making use or poker tells might be great when playing against newbies or recreational players but they definitely will not be as effective when playing against pros.
Another important strategy to consider in your gameplay is bet sizing. The best way to go about this is by choosing healthier bets both preflop and post-flop – these are to be used in combination with your strong hands.
Best Poker Strategy Blogs
There is a ton of information on the internet that is very useful to players. Even so, not many other sites stood out in terms of quality and comprehensiveness that we found in the 888 Poker strategy guides. These are not only great for beginners but they also for very valuable info that can help even pros to improve their skills and strategies.
888poker answers a number of questions including the very basic ones such as “How to Play Poker?” while at the same time offering info on some of the basic strategies that players can use. As if that is not enough, there are detailed guides on the rules, gameplay, and strategies that apply to different variants of poker including Texas Hold’em, Omaha, and 7 Card Stud among others.
To top it all off, the site offers valuable info on special offers and poker tournaments that you can participate in. Moreover, there is an even an 888 Poker eMagazine that keeps you updated on the latest happenings in the world of poker whenever you are not enjoying any of the amazing poker games like Texas Hold’em that the operator has to offer.
Best Poker Strategy Books
Reading about poker on sites and blogs is very convenient but in case you ever want to go the old-school way and read about the game, you will be very happy to know that there are lots of great books. Now you can pick the minds of some of the greatest poker players and even scientists who took their time to study the game before eventually putting down their findings in the text.
Every poker strategy book that you will come across will, of course, have some useful info for you whether you’re playing on mobile or using Bitcoin. We checked out a decent number of these books and these are a few that truly stood out for us. They include:
- The Theory of Poker by David Sklansky
This book stood out for me because of how comprehensive it was when it comes to discussing the general concepts that define all variants of poker. I really enjoyed learning about bluffing, the odds, the use of psychology, and the importance of position in a poker game. Even for pro poker players, this is a nice read that will keep you smiling as you remember how you got started with the game.
- Play Poker Like the Pros by Phil Hellmuth
Phil Hellmuth is one of the greatest poker players ever and therefore when he decided to write a book, lots of people were very excited about it. This did pay off with the book turning out so good that it even became the only book to make it to the New York Times Bestseller List. It sparked a bit of controversy while giving both new and seasoned players a fresh perspective of poker in the modern world.
- The Mathematics of Poker by Bill Chen & Jerrod Ankenman
If your goal is to become a poker whizz then you will need to learn all about the mathematics of the game. This book lets you do just that. While it might seem a little challenging for newbies especially those who just want to be recreational players, it is a great read if you intend to advance your gameplay at some point. If you want to create the best poker strategy, this book will be the best place to start.
- Super/System: A Course in Power Poker by Doyle Brunson (1978)
Often described as the ‘bible’ of poker, Super/System: A Course in Power Poker is the most recommended book by poker professionals. Here you will strategies that apply to a wide range of games and get to see how they were used by Brunson who is also known as the Godfather of Poker.
Poker Strategy Training
Reading the blogs and books we have recommended or even watching videos are a great way of ushering yourself into the world of poker. Still, nothing comes close to getting some hands-on experience where you not only get to apply what you have learned but also build your own strategies and skills.
Fortunately, there are a number of sites that offer poker coaching to new players. A personal coach would also be nice if you can find one. Some of the poker training resources that we would recommend to newbies include:
Upswing Poker – This site has a feature known as ‘The Poker Lab’ that lets players get some experience with the game.
Advanced Poker Training – The site works for poker players of all levels. Find a great poker game strategy and try it out to see if it really works for you.
888 Poker – In addition to offering tons of poker info, 888poker.com is also a training site for poker players.
Red Chip Poker – Operating since 2013, this amazing site is run by some of the biggest names in poker and they offer training on strategies that you can use on cash games as well as in tournaments.
PokerNerve – Getting started with this video poker training is free and in case you want to advance further, you can get onto of their paid courses.
Daniel Negreanu Masterclass – Get to pick the mind of this renowned poker pro in the 38-video masterclass where he gets to talk about what it takes to become a great poker player.
Poker Ranger – this a special software that lets poker players construct, compare, and save hand ranges.
With so many places to choose from, you will never run out of players where you can learn about poker right from the basics all the way to the most advanced strategies in existence. Whether you prefer paid or free training resources, there will be something for you. What more would you need to start your poker adventure?