Common Blunders to Avoid: A Beginner’s Guide to Poker

Common Blunders to Avoid A Beginner's Guide to Poker (2)

Online poker can seem easy, but it can actually be a difficult game to master. Those who are just starting out with poker may make a few critical mistakes that shake their confidence and make them feel disheartened. However, there are a few things to look out for to avoid making these mistakes. So, let’s explore some of the common blunders to avoid when you are starting out playing poker.

Firstly, it is expected that amateur poker players will make several errors when they are first testing their poker skills. This highlights the importance of getting in plenty of practice in online before heading to a casino. You’ll find you have more time to think, so you can consider your options, and face less distractions when playing online poker. To get the upper hand in online poker, it is wise to tune into the subtle clues that could tell you what an opponent is thinking such as their betting patterns and how consistent they are. This will allow you to adapt your strategy accordingly, just as you would in a real-life poker game.

In general, poker hand selection is something that you need to consider whether you are playing online or in land-based venues. In poker games, you will usually get a good idea of how the game will progress from the get-go. For example, if you enter a pot with a bad hand, you should expect to see bad results. This is why you should have a valid reason for playing a certain hand as there is no room for chance and luck in this game. Starting with a strong hand selection should give you the best chance to dominate the table.

Often, many poker beginners will try to overcompensate for their lack of experience by trying too much too soon. This has become known as fancy play syndrome which was first coined by the professional poker player Mike Caro. Simply put, it is the desire to utilize the “fancy” or more complicated play rather than straight forward play primarily to be perceived by opponents as a super savvy, expert poker player. Involving your ego in a game of poker will never fare out well, especially because you don’t have the expertise to back it up. Instead, it is better to start small and slowly introducing bits of strategic thinking as you go along until you build up your confidence.

One of the things new players struggle with the most is knowing which hand of cards wins. Many people who are interested in playing poker will dive in without knowing what each hand means. Luckily, there are plenty of resources available to newbie poker players to help them learn in the form of quality books, videos and poker hand charts. Studying these carefully will give you a better idea of how to play and how to recognise the moves being made by other people.

While it can be tempting to stick to playing with other beginner poker players, this can also do you a disservice. Playing a few games with those who don’t know much about the game can be a good social experience, especially if you are playing with friends. However, you will only be able to challenge yourself when you play with experts in the field. These people will push you out of your comfort zone and may actually give you tips and advice which can help you in the long run. This also exposes you to different types of people who have diverse playing types and tactics.

Many poker enthusiasts make the mistake of tuning into the actual gameplay while neglecting the relevant terminology used in games of poker. However, certain terms are absolutely critical to learn as they relate to various moves you need to make during the game. For example, blinds need to be understood which is a forced bet, usually put in by two players to the left of the dealer, before any cards are dealt. There is a difference between small blinds and big blinds as the small blind is half the minimum betting amount while the big blind is the full amount of the minimum bet. Other terms to learn are bluffing, flopping, folding and the pot; all of which are incredibly important in the game of poker.

In summary, starting out in the realm of poker can be intimidating, but there are a few ways that you can avoid making critical mistakes that derail you. From tuning into the behaviour of your opponents to challenging yourself by playing with professional poker players, you can set yourself up for success in poker. Remember when you are starting out in poker to also never overlook the relevant terminology and to check out the resources made available to newbie poker players as these could take you to the next level.


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