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Top Ten Hold'em Beginners Mistakes
Like in any other sport or game, beginners make mistakes. No one is born with the innate skill to be a hold'em poker star. The way we naturally react to some classic situations is not always the optimal play. Here is a list of the top ten most common novices' mistakes with some poker advice to remedy them.
1. Wait to post a blind until the button moves to make you the big blind. Do not post the blind as soon as you sit down. This extra blind payment seems small compared to an average pot, but if compounded over a long time of playing poker, it will make a real hole in your bankroll.
2. Know something about the game beyond the rules. Read a beginner's poker book. Read some of the strategy articles on this website. It will save you a lot of times and money to have a notion of strategy instead of wandering in the wrong direction.
3. Exert patience. Control your tendency to seek action and only play a select group of strong hands preflop. It is suboptimal to play more than 30% of hands preflop. Seek a list of strong Hold'em starting hands.
4. Exert control. Do not chase miraculous cards. If you missed the flop or have a weak hand, do not pay an aggressive opponent likely to have you beaten. Do not be the sheriff trying to catch every bluff.
5. Exert prudence in your bankroll management Only risk the money you can lose. Play first at low limits you can afford. Try fixed limit before no-limit to learn the ropes. Put one toe in the water before jumping in.
6. Do not over slow play or over trap. Slow playing is a strategy to be used with caution. If used systematically with strong hands, it will backfire because it enables your opponents to draw cheaply against you and to give you bad beats. It is better to collect a small pot with a big bet, than to lose a big pot with small initial bets.
7. Do not take it personally. No one is there to get you. Do not seek revenge against a villain who gave you a bad beat by calling your preflop raise with 7♥ 3♣. When you play texas hold'em on the Internet, opponents change very frequently so there is no point in making a crusade against a lucky donkey.
8. Do not be impatient. Remember that against 9 players, you have 10% chance to have the best hand each time. Do not expect to win every hand.
9. Do not play more tables than you can handle. Multi-tabling is a buzzword in online poker. Do not abuse it! Start with one table and increment progressively. Playing multi tables at the same time can be dangerous if you have to make two difficult decisions simultaneously.
10. Do not play scared, or too "nit". Poker is a risk reward game and very exceptionally will you hold the unbeatable nuts. You must take risk, meaning that you have to be willing to lose money sometimes in order to make money overall. Scared play is easily exploitable.
If you can avoid the top ten mistakes, you are on the road to success and online poker profitability. Try one of our recommended poker sites and practice your hold'em poker skills.