Texas Hold’em Poker Tips to Help You Achieve Higher Wins

by
Joe A.
2nd May, 2021

Are you a big Texas Hold’em Poker player and are you looking for some tips and tricks to achieve bigger wins? You have come to the right place as we will share you some top advice to help you improve your game!

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Texas Hold’em Poker

Texas Hold’em is the most popular poker variant across the world these days. In our article, we will explain some of the key concepts behind this game and share some top Texas Hold’em poker tips. Hopefully, it will allow you to take your game to the next level and potentially earn higher winnings than you are managing so far.

While the title of this article says it can make you a winner, please do keep in mind that in the short term, poker is still a game of chance. No one can guarantee that you will be a winner. But as poker is also a game of skill and tactic, you can increase your chances of becoming a winner by mastering the concepts below.

texas hold'em poker tips

Texas Hold’em Poker is fun to play, both in (live) tournaments and in money games in an online casino. ©Screenshot

1. Recognise play directions and use it for your own information

If you look closely at other players’ body language, you can find clues which cards they may be holding. These clues are also called “tells” in poker. Many of the poker players repeatedly have the same betting patterns and a trained eye can recognise them. If you play close attention, you can identify these specific actions.

If you know and understand such tells, it is possible to get a long-term advantage against such players because you are in a better position to read their hands. Enough poker books have been written on this concept. Some good books you can buy about poker tells include Mike Caro’s “Book of Poker Tells” or Phil Hellmuth’s book.

An easily recognisable clue is when someone often throws the cards away when it’s not yet his turn. Not everyone will notice, but if you pay close attention to it, you can tell which players have no intention of playing their hand. If they throw away their hand before their turn, you will receive some information about the strength of their hand.

Why this is so important? Because it effectively changes your position, and it is one of the most critical aspects of your poker strategy. The opposite of this is the players who plans to play his hands. These players often show this by placing their chips on the cards way ahead of their turn. This, again, gives you information. It often means that a player has a strong hand.

Another clue is when a player’s hands are shaking a lot. You would think it is a characteristic of someone playing a weak hand who is bluffing or scared, but often the opposite is true. These players often have a strong hand and their body might automatically behave like this out of sheer excitement. It is important to carefully assess the situations when you play poker.

A player with a strong hand who is very enthusiastic about his cards often unwittingly releases his enthusiasm and his hands might start shaking a bit. Also keep an eye out for the players who want to pretend to have a very strong hand. Most poker players are bad actors – and such fake behaviour can be distinguished from real tells. Understanding and seeing the differences – which are often very slight and hardly noticeable at first sight – takes practice. A lot of practice. But if you can manage it, it will greatly benefit you.

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2. Bluffing and semi-bluffing

There are plenty of players who bluff a lot and it is a big part of the Texas Hold’em poker game. Speaking from experience, it is smart to think in advance when it is time to bluff and whether it is worth it. Therefore we have provided a few tips on bluffing and semi-bluffing.

You should never bluff against more than two players. It is easier to bluff one or two players away from the table than five or six opponents. Look at it from a probability perspective. If a bluff is profitable when it succeeds 25% of the time, how often should players discard the cards to make it worthwhile? If you have one opponent with a 25% folding probability, then it is a good decision. If you have two opponents, both of which have a 50% chance of folding, bluffing is still a profitable action. But even if all three players have a 60% chance of discarding their cards, letting 3 players fold is too unlikely to make it a profitable bluff. See the maths here: 60% x 60% x 60% = 21.6%.

A semi bluff, on the other hand, is often a more profitable bluff. When you go semi-bluffing, you have a hand that offers the chance to overtake the opponent and eventually beat him or her with a better hand. You win if the player discards the cards, but you also win if you get a good card on the table if they call your semi-bluff.

Here you have an example: You have four cards to a flush on the flop at Texas Hold’em. You have a 33% chance that the final card to create a flush will appear on the table. If you are heads-up with one player, and you estimates he throws his cards away 20% of the time if you play aggressively, you will win 53% of the time in this situation. That’s a semi-bluff.

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3. Don’t tilt

Tilting while playing poker is probably one of your biggest enemies at the poker table and the biggest unforced error you can make. It happens when a player has bad luck at the table and starts making bad decisions because of this. If you can avoid tilting, you increase your chances of winning dramatically, especially if you are playing against an opponent who does tend to tilt himself when hitting a bad streak.

There are several variants of tilting. Some poker players go on tilt after just one bad hand, while other players only do so when they experience unlikely situations, such as losing several times in a row.

Each player has their own limits what their mind can handle. When you find out that an opponent is tilting, it is smart to only play good (strong) starting hands in order to commit them to put lots of chips on the table during a match-up in which you are likely to have a superior hand and winning chances.

texas hold'em poker tips

An exciting hand in a Texas Hold’em poker game. ©Screenshot

4. Paying attention

Paying attention to the game and to your opponents is very important if you want to excel at playing poker. It means that you have to be alert at all times, which is a skill in itself. One of the best poker players of all time has once said his top poker tip was simply to “pay attention”.

Many players don’t pay attention to the way a game unfolds unless they are involved in it and are actively fighting for the money in the pot. In other words, if they have folded their hand or intent to discard their hand, they stop paying attention to what happens at the poker table. Many times they listen to music, watch television or talk to other players at the table.

This is a big mistake as it is highly important to keep your attention to the table and to watch what is happening, even during hands in which you are not actively involved. To keep yourself engaged, think about what the players’ cards might be and see how close you might have gotten to winning if you would have pursued a different (but still realistic) strategy for your folded hand.

If winning money at Texas Hold’em was nothing more than patience and waiting for good hands then anyone could become a professional poker player. The truth is that there is a lot more to learn when you play for real money, and mindfulness is one of them. You can improve your ability to be more perceptive by spending less time on social media or to stuff happening around you and to solely focus on the table and your opponents. It is also interesting to look at the players opposite you at the table and if they might give away any tells with their body language.

Most importantly, you should try to estimate as best you can what kind of cards other players might have as their hand. The more accurate your predictions are during a showdown, the more likely you are ready to make the right decisions, which means winning the maximum amount of money on a winning hand and mitigating your losses if you have a weaker hand.

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5. Place opponents in different categories

When you pay more attention to your opponents, their tactic, tells and habits, you will be able to make better choices during the game. The easiest way to categorise the opponents into categories is to look at the following tendencies:

– Aggression
– Selection

Aggression is just a player’s tendency to get involved in as many games as possible, or to raise more often during each round. Aggressive players generally always raise when they have the opportunity. Selection is the tendency of players to participate in a hand. Players who often throw away their hands play “tight”, while players who often get involved in rounds are called “loose”. When you combine these two tendencies, you get four types of poker players:

– Aggressive and tight
– Aggressive and loose
– Passive and tight
– Passive and loose

An aggressive tight poker player is normally the one to watch out for. These players wait until they get good cards and then they bet very aggressively. Such players tend to fold immediately if they have a weak or average hand while you are playing your hand highly aggressively.

In other words, with a lot of tight aggressive opponents, all you can do to beat them is to put a raise on their raise, which is to say, a re-raise. For a re-raise you need a very strong hand yourself.

Aggressive and “loose” players like to play a lot of hands, and they also play aggressively. By betting and often raising money, they put pressure on their opponents to fold. If they have many weak opponents, they can win enough small pots when their opponents discard the cards.

One way to beat an aggressive loose player is to play even fewer hands until you end up with a very strong hand. Don’t be afraid to throw in all your chips before the flop against such players, especially if you have a high pair like aces, kings or queens.

Passive and tight players are an obstacle. They don’t play a lot of pots, and when they do they don’t deliver much action. These players are often referred to as a “rock”. They are not a major threat for final victory in a tournament, but it is difficult to win money from them. They often fold their hands.

Passive and loose players are the ones you have to love to play against. They play a lot of hands, and when they do they like to check or opt for a call on a raise. They don’t raise much themselves. The best way to beat these opponents is to wait until you have good cards and then play aggressively with these cards.

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6. Game selection is important

Choosing the right game to play has a huge influence on your chance of winning. For example, if you are playing at a table with many aggressive, tight players, you may need to look for another table. It is important to analyse in advance what type of poker players are at the table. For example, if there are 3 tight aggressive players at the table and the table is completely full, it is better to play at another table.

If you play at a table with a maximum capacity of 6 persons, then 1 or 2 tight aggressive players at the table can be too much. If possible, it is best to find a poker table where most players are loose and aggressive. This increases the range of hands you can play profitably. This means you will win more pots. These Texas Hold’em tables are ideal for expert players who want to win a lot of money.

7. Money management

Your balance is a good indication of which limits you should be playing. In general, it is better to keep playing on tables where you can buy yourself in for less than 5% of your balance. If it costs more to buy in, you are probably playing above your limit.

There are two reasons for this. First of all, you run the risk of going broke if your balance is insufficient. Second, if your balance isn’t big enough, it’s often because you don’t know how to win the low limit games. You will soon notice that as the limits are going up, the players get better too. Obviously there are amateurs at every limit.

Some players even have stricter money management than described above. For example, if you specialise in poker tournaments, there is a greater variety of players participating, so you would need an even bigger balance when it comes to buy-ins.

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Conclusion

Texas Hold’em poker is probably one of the most fun games you can play in the casino, whether it’s a tournament in a land-based casino or you are just stopping by for an hour at a table in an online casino. There are many opportunities to make big wins. You just need to ensure you have the right set of skills to be able to do this, which means you have to understand the basic concepts of the game.

The concepts which we recommend you to master before playing real money poker include:

– Investigate clues from players
– Bluff to win pots while having a bad hand
– Do not tilt after losing a few times
– Always keep an eye out and observe the game and players, even if you are not active in the round
– Categorise players to be able to make better decisions
– Choose the right poker tables based on your own playing style
– Maintain a good money management and do not play at too high limits if your playing balance doesn’t allow for this

Good luck!

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