Rookie Mistakes in Poker

pokerRookie Mistakes in Poker

Attention all poker players. It is time to ditch those old troublesome habits before they ship your poker chips across the table. I’m going to share with you today the top nine mistakes that make you stand out as a rookie at the poker table.

The number nine reason everyone at the table thinks you’re a rookie is because you bluff way too much. Many amateurs watch too many movies and then think if the just keep bluffing, they will keep winning. They will see a pro like Phil Ivey bluff on the World Series of Poker with 7-2 off suit and somehow think they can do it too. The rookie will tend to miss the three hours of play that lead up to this bluff. The large flaw in this style of play that a rookie is oblivious to, is that early in the game everyone knows that you love to bluff. Then you style is just shot down over and over again.

Right next to that is the fact that many untrained rookies do not have the patience to play poker. If you play poker correctly, you’ll often find that you will be waiting around a lot for a decent pair of cards. Pros will wait it out, while rookies will go ahead and play cards that they know they shouldn’t just for the sake of playing poker. If you are doing this then simply put all your chips in a package and just airmail straight across the table.

Next the most advertised rookie mistake is playing limits they cannot afford. There is nothing in the game of poker that breaks you confidence and your paycheck faster than this. By doing this you will find yourself thinking about other things like a car payment or a mortgage, and this my friend takes up space in your head that should be concentrating on playing poker. There is simply no way to continually go positive playing poker when you have to worry about how you will pay your bills if your card doesn’t hit the river. So my words of advice are “get out now”!

Another mistake that many don’t hear about that often is drinking while playing. If you are playing poker you need all your mental strength focused on your game. You’ll find that yourself making stupid calls that you wouldn’t have made if you didn’t knock down a couple beers before playing. It is no coincidence that the casino offers you free drinks while you play, they know the effects and now so do you! I mean you do not see Tom “Derr” Dwan showing up to High Stakes Poker sipping on a margarita.

Ok now let’s talk about an exit strategy. There is no defined strategy about when you should get up and leave the table. Most rookies will leave when they are barley positive in comparison to the amount of chips in play. They often employ the “quit ahead and chase behind” strategy which means they will quit with little winnings but keep playing when they are losing a lot. This is exactly the opposite of what you should be doing. When you have a lot of chips in front of you, you have a powerful table image you should use to get even more poker chips. On the other hand when you are losing everybody at the table notices that you are on tilt and takes advantage of you.

Now the next reason applies to both rookies and pros is playing in games against opponents that you know you cannot beat. This will kill your confidence and your entire bankroll. This leads right into the next mistake which is keep your ego in check. I don’t mean to burst your bubble but the day you realize that you’re not as good as you think and that you can learn a thing or two is the day you start on the road to becoming a real pro.

Next is simply playing way to many hands. Most rookies will play hands that pros would stay away from because they do not understand the value of starting with premium hands and valuable situations. Some will play a pair like 8-3 and give the reason “I played them because they were suited”.

One of the most important mistakes is playing on tilt. Daniel Negreanu once said “Tilt eats bankrolls for breakfast!” Well not only that but it will gobble up your life savings too if you’re not careful. A player on tilt will often chase miracle hands even when he knows he shouldn’t.

Finally, the number one rookie mistake is simply playing too many hours. I mean come on you would stay at your old nine to five job for 20 hours, so don’t do it at the poker table. Your mind will go into sleep mode and you will convince yourself that you’re playing really well, even though everyone else is laughing at you. So these are the top ten rookie mistakes made in the game of poker. If you catch yourself making these mistakes, well then it is time to go back to the books before you go to your next game. So have a good time, and don’t play rookie poker.

December 2, 2013: posted in Mistakes And Bad Bets No Comments

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