There are plenty of quick and easy tips on how to become better at poker, but a lot of them don’t really teach you anything about the game. If you speak to any of the professionals, they’ll tell you that the only way to get better at poker is through practice. There’s no quick guide that will get you to the high roller tables. However, there are some tips that can help you to get the most out of the practice that you put in. There are some things that are essential to spend plenty of time on and some things that you can worry about a little less. We’ve put together a guide to the things that everybody should be practising to make themselves into better poker players for life, not just for the five minutes after they’ve read the guide!
Realise You Have A Lot To Learn
One of the funny things about casino games is that the more you know, the more you realise you have to learn. You’ll often see new players strut confidently into a casino, relying on beginner’s luck and a bit of ego and that’s fine – after all, the name of the game is to enjoy yourself. However, if you really want to make progress in your play, then you need to develop an appreciation of the game. Anyone can master the basics of poker, but really knuckling down and understanding the more complex strategies takes time and dedication. The good news is that, if you enjoy poker, you’re going to be naturally curious about it and find the learning aspect just as much fun as the winning part.
Know Your Poker Hand Rankings
It should go without saying that getting to know your poker hand rankings will be one of the most helpful aspects of your poker training regime. Most people make a good start at knowing what’s what before diving in, but if you don’t know them yet then here’s a quick guide. A royal flush is the dream hand and is made up of all five cards in the same suit: ten, jack, queen, king and ace. If you get dealt this straight away, then you’re in for a great game! Next is the straight flush; this is again all cards in the same suit but can be any cards that follow in order. Four of a kind is next on the list and is four cards of one order: for example, all jacks and one odd leftover. These are the top three to know, but you’ve got seven more to learn!
Play In Good Games
Depending on what you want to achieve, a good game could mean two different things. If you want to win more, then a good game is going to be a game full of players who are worse than you. If you want to learn more, then a good game is going to have at least a couple of players who are better than you. If you keep the stakes small, you can learn a lot from playing in games with strong players. Keep an eye on those who you know are good and watch them to find out how they bluff. You might pick up some techniques that could be useful.
Learn the Odds
This step is a little more complex than the first two, so if you want to find out more about how to calculate them then this article will help. The basic thing to know is that poker odds are what helps you to decide whether you should continue with your hand or not. They work on a basis of probability, where you try to get the maximum pot for your stake. Obviously, this is easier when you’re pulling off a difficult hand but learning the maths behind pot odds will help you enormously.