betting strategies in texas holdem

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Betting strategies in texas holdem

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However a good opponent should spot that there is a straight possibility on the flop and may be cautious. If you were to lead in and make a value bet of half of the pot, the chances are that your opponent may wonder if you have the straight and maybe fold. If you slow play this hand and check, your opponent may think that you are scared of someone holding a straight, and try to represent that he has it by making a bet hoping that you will fold and he can take the pot there and then.

You then have the option to either raise him and reveal your strength or just call and continue the slow play into the next round of betting. By making this move you have got your opponent to commit chips to the pot and increased the size of the pot in a situation where you have a very strong hand. Now the risk with the slow play move is that you give your opponent the chance to catch up, and also run the risk of giving your opponent a free card if he fails to bet and also checks.

This is why you should reserve this play for only the stronger hands, and never slow play if you think your opponent could be on a draw which would catch up with or beat your hand. Slow play can also be used against a very tight opponent, where by you give him free cards in the hope that he might catch up a little but not overtake your hand, thus encouraging him to bet. You should always be aware if you are Pot Committed in a particular hand.

In this situation it is always better to make the first move and go All-In rather than letting your opponent make a bet that puts you all in. Whys this? Because if you make the first move you have an additional way to win the pot, as you might force your opponent to fold, where as if you just call his bet putting you all in, you will have to beat him to win the pot. The All-In bet is used a lot more in Tournaments rather than Cash games, so at the moment this bet should have very limited use in your strategy.

Although I have given you approximate bet size guidelines in each of the bet types above it is important that once you are comfortable with using the above bets you start to vary the amounts of the bets. Now that you understand the different bet types, you can start to try to spot these types of bets in your opponents actions.

Against weak players you should play a very basic betting strategy with plenty of value bets when you have a good hand. Once we move onto playing better players at higher stakes we can use these more advanced bets against them. Return to the How to Win at Poker Course homepage. Objective Act weak in the hope of inducing action from opponent Bet Range Check. Objective Put maximum pressure on your opponent to make a mistake Bet Range 1x to 2x the Pot. Also, focus on the total number of players remaining at the table.

A hand that shouldn't be played with seven players could be strong when you're down to two or three since there's less competition at the table. Also, the fewer players there are, the more often you're forced to bet the blinds , so you have to be more aggressive. It's easy to get caught up in your hand and lose sight of the other players. But you need to be aware of how many chips they have a rough count, not necessarily a specific count , what cards they could have, and what their best hand could be given the community cards you share with everyone else.

Watching player trends can also be helpful. Try to determine who bluffs and who plays a tighter game. It's a good indication that the player has something solid. If a player loses a fairly big hand and then comes right back with a big bet, that player may be betting recklessly out of frustration.

This is not a bad time to push back—as long as you have a solid hand to do it with—because someone playing like that isn't likely to fold. If you have a hand that's strong enough to see the flop, don't let other players see it for free—at least raise by the minimum bet. Beginners love to see the flop as cheaply as possible, but it's dangerous to let them do it.

Say your hand is an A-K and the other players have a and a You should be able to get both of them out of the hand before the flop. But if you let them see the flop for just the price of the big blind, disaster could strike. In this case, a would be about the worst—you have nothing, and one of your opponents has an open-ended straight draw while the other has a pair of 10s. You've wasted a great starting hand. Folding a hand after the flop is difficult for some beginning players.

But that kind of thinking can cause you to lose a lot of chips. Even if you start with a great hand, the flop could kill you. Say you have an A-K but the flop comes up J-J

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You will have committed a lot of money to the pot when a smaller bet would have done the same job but saved you money. So as you can guess, we are going to be shooting for the 'sweet spot' in terms of bet sizes. This is going to be where we bet enough to make it mathematically incorrect for players on draws to call, but at the same time not betting so much that it means we lose too much money if we come up against resistance.

So lets get to it This just means that whenever you make a bet, you take into consideration the size of the pot and bet according to how big or small the pot is. But again, this is all well and good, but it doesn't tell you how big your bets should be.

So let me give you one more magical rule that you should always try and follow when it comes to bet sizing. By following this rule, you will always be able to work out the optimum range of bet sizes to make at any stage of any hand. By betting between these two figures, you will be betting enough to force opponents on a draw to fold, but not risking so much that it makes it detrimental if one of the other players at the table has you beat. It's a simple rule I know, but it will take you a long way.

I'll mention this again in the article on playing before the flop , but as a general rule of thumb, you want to make your preflop raises around 4 times the size of the big blind. If you find that there are any limpers before you, then add 1 big blind on top of the 4 big blind raise.

This is because limpers make the pot bigger, which will mean that even if you make a standard 4X BB raise, your opponents will be getting a better price to make the call to see a flop. So make sure you put them to a tougher decision You're not trying to guarantee winning to pot with a big raise. The benefit of it is getting in to a bigger-money pot with an edge, and that edge is having stronger cards than your opponents. It's good when they call with terrible hands.

With high cards like AK and AQ, the ideal situation is to be heads-up 1v1 on the flop. The more players in the pot with a hand like AK, the trickier it gets. Good preflop betting strategy increases the chances of you playing heads up. That's essentially the meat and bones of bet sizing in Texas Hold'em for you.

The bet sizing may seem a bit bigger than you might normally be used to, but trust me on this one, this is how a winning poker player bets. It may seem a little scary at first, but you will get used to it after you start to get your feet wet. To adjust against various players, you firstly need to observe your opponents and notice their mistakes.

More often than not, poker software will do the lion share of the job if you are playing online, but you have to rely only on yourself in a live setting. However, even if this requires additional focus and concentration, knowing what mistakes different players commits will help you make better decisions and significantly increase your win rate.

One thing that can have lasting results is taking notes about irregular lines that a specific player makes in the game. If you build a habit to take notes about your opponents, every time you sit down to play in Texas Holdem game with the same players, you instantly know how to adjust versus them.

If you notice that one player is a calling station and is ready to call your three street barrels with merely third pair, you can widen your value betting range and force him to pay more. Just like this, you can mark other things in both live and online games and increase your chance of winning. You do want to be one of the players who follow Texas Holdem strategy blindly, without considering the skill level of your opponent or his mistakes at the table.

In most other cases, you can win more money by exploiting specific opponents or even population tendencies, but for that, you need to learn how to categorize different players. A lot of the time, recreational players fall in one of these categories:. Each of those groups is making massive mistakes that you can easily exploit. You should not bluff against someone who hates folding and be willing to fold even reasonable hands when passive players show a lot of aggression.

Of course, these are just simple common sense adjustments, but if you want to learn more about this specific topic, I created a detailed guide on how to play against different players that you can read. When you know how to identify recreational players, you can take one more step and learn how to save some of your money for later use, and this is especially true in lower stake games. If the player who has been very passive out of nowhere stars raising your bets, it is a good time to fold even strong hands.

More often than not, tight passive players will not start bluffing out of nowhere, so you can easily fold much more than you should in theory and exploit their play. Even if you end up making some wrong laydowns, the times you will be right will pay for it many times over, so this is a very profitable adjustment you should have in mind. Texas Holdem is based on math more than anything else, and while you do not need an advanced knowledge of it at the beginning, learning how to calculate your odds and outs will help you a lot.

Whenever you have a draw, there will be some cards that can help you make the best hand. For example, if you have a straight draw with JT on 98 4, you have 8 outs to hit your straight four queens and four sevens. If you want to know how likely you are to hit your draw on the next card, you just need to multiply your odds by 2, and multiplying your odds by 4 will show you how likely you are to hit your draw with the next two cards, turn and the river.

Here are a couple of common situations:. Here you can find more poker odds and outs that you should know and learn some advanced stuff. Building proper c-betting ranges requires some studying, and many training sites such as Upswing poker lab can help you with this. However, you should know some of the basics even before sitting down in the games, and one of the most important things is to have some strong hands in your checking range on the flop.

If you keep betting all your made hands like top pair and better, your checking range will be very weak, and you will have to fold to aggression much more than you would want to. So checking some made hands helps you balance this out, and also gives your opponent a chance to bluff with his air hands, which he would snap fold when facing a bet. While you want to check some strong hands when you are in position, it is even more critical OOP, so make sure to check enough hands so that no one can exploit you by bluffing whenever you check.

All previously mentioned Texas Holdem strategy tips can be used in both cash games and tournaments alike, so no matter what you play, you can significantly improve following these tips. However, there are specific situations in MTTs that require additional adjustments, and this is something we are going to cover next.

One of the first things you need to understand about Texas Holdem poker tournament strategy is that your chips are not equal to real money, and this is where ICM calculations come into play. ICM can tell you the value of your stack by converting your chips into real money value at any moment.

It is especially crucial on the bubble or final table with high price jumps. If you lose your whole stack in this situation, you will go bust, but if you double up, you are not guaranteed to win. Of course, this is a very simplified explanation, but the chips you lose are more valuable then chips you win in these situations, and ICM helps you learn mathematically correct plays. Undoubtedly, it has some limitations since it does not take into consideration your skill level or specific dynamics, but ICM offers one of the best ways for mastering end game situations.

Bubble in poker is a situation where there are just a few players left until everyone reaches paid places, and it creates a perfect atmosphere for building your stack. A lot of armature players are merely waiting for the bubble to burst since they want to reach the money phase and avoids all confrontations.

The same could be said about middling stacks. These guys do not want to risk it all and bust against chip leaders, so they will quietly sit and wait until the bubble is over. While you should not go too crazy against big stacks, you can take calculated risks against medium and short stacks. Of course, if you have built a big pile of chips yourself, this is a time to go crazy cause you can literally be opening almost every hand if the money pressure is bit and other players are scared to play.

Push fold is a tournament stage, where you have a very short stack that only allows you to move all-in if you decide to play. It can happen late in the game, or early if you manage to lose a significant part of your stack, but either way, it is vital to play it correctly.

Most of the time, when you have less than 10 big blinds left in your stack, you will just have to go with the hand or fold it. The closer you are to the button, the more you should be shoving since stealing blinds in such a situation will significantly increase your chip stack and might give you a fighting chance to take it all down. On top of, that you should avoid entering the pot if someone has already raised unless you have a premium hand and want to play for your stack.

While stealing blinds is profitable in cash games, there is no need to go crazy and steal very wide. However, that changes when you start playing MTTs. Of course, this does not mean that you should be stealing all the time, but if you are in late position or have a huge stack on the bubble, you should opening almost any two cards and taking advantage of your situation.

Another strategy tip for Texas Holdem that is specific to tournaments is to defend blinds extremely wide. It all breaks down to simple math. If you face a small raise and have dead money in the pot antes , you are getting insanely good odds and should defend any playable hands. For example, if you face a min-raise and everyone folds around to you, you need to call 1bb while the pot is already 4.

Of course, it will not be easy to realize your equity out of position, so you can fold some hands that are close in regards to the math, but everything else should be defended, so you see how wide you can go. Live games are also very different compared to online formats, be it Texas Holdem or anything else, so you need to understand at least the basic adjustments before hitting the casino. One of the most significant advantages of live games is that you can take all the time that you need to think through your choices, and you should take advantage of this option.

Of course, this should not become just wasting time when you know what you are going to do, but giving yourself enough room to consider all of the options will also help you improve your Texas Holdem strategy and progress as a player. So if your opponents table a winning hand when you call his river bet, do not show what you had with a hope to get some sympathy just because you got very unlucky and simply muck it.

Giving away information is never a good idea, so play it smart rather than let emotions control your actions at the table. While playing live, you have an added benefit of seeing your opponents, and this opens the door for observing them and finding some patterns. I will not list all of the tells in this place since that is beyond the scope of this article, but you can check a full list of poker tells here.

For now, I want you to remember one statement:. If your opponents pretend to be strong, he is likely weak, and if he shows uncertainty and weakness and then bets, he is more likely to have a very strong holding. So the old saying weak equals strong and strong equals weak is true in poker, and it makes complete sense. Imagine a situation where your opponent hesitates, shows many signs of uncertainty, and then raise your bet on the river.

Would he be doing it with a weak hand? He could, but it is extremely unlikely. If we had a weak hand, he would not show you that weakness since he would want you to fold and, more likely than not, would try to pretend confident and robust. While tells should not be your only source of information when making decisions, observing simple signs can be very valuable additional information, so use this option when playing Texas Holdem games in a live setting.

Observing other players can give you a lot of information just as we discussed in regards to poker tells, and one of the best times to do it is to notice how they react after seeing their cards. This a great moment to identify some tells since players tend to react quite differently when seeing strong and weak holdings, so try to notice their reactions. It is easy to get bored when playing live if you are used to a lot of action and multi-tabling in an online setting, but you should resist your desire to play more hands than you need to.

The fact that you are playing in a live setting does not magically change the value of your hands or let you profitably play trash. That being said, since you are likely to face weaker competition, you can play a few more hands, but do not take it too far.

If you are really boards, just build a habit of observing other players while you are not in the hand, and it will surely be way more profitable than playing weak hands in the long run. On top of this, it will not win sympathy points and might even close some doors for you in the future, so it is not worth it. Of course, you can accidentally angle shoot someone without even knowing that you are doing something wrong, so it is worth studying this subject and prepare for your first trip to bricks and mortar poker room.

One of the most costly mistakes new live game players often commit is string betting. String betting happens when you fail to put all of your chips in one motion that you intended to bet. It might lead to a very costly scenario, where you will be forced just to call in a situation you wanted to raise and create many ridiculous problems.

The good news is that you can easily avoid this misunderstanding by verbally announcing your play, and saying how much you are going to bet. Then you can place your chips however you want, so if you are not sure how to proceed, always choose the latter option. Even if you are exceptionally playing only live games, joining an online poker site to practice your skills could be the best thing you can do to yourself.

You can play many times more hands online in the same timeframe and gain experience at a better pace. On top of that, you will find many useful tools that can help you progress even further and will quickly leave your live game opponents behind if they fail to improve at least at the same pace.

Last but not least is online poker and all of the nuances that come with this format. Just like live games require specific adaptation, you also need to adjust your Texas Holdem strategy and how you approach the game in an online setting, so let's cover this topic. So, you should mute your phone, turn off the TV and close all irrelevant internet browsers or do anything else that will remove the distractions. This will force you to concentrate on your games and will help you play at your best for an extended period, which has a massive influence on your overall results.

With an online setting, you have the privilege of playing a few tables at once and many more hands than playing poker in live games. Of course, if we assume that you will dedicate some time to table select, which is also vital when multi-tabling. It is better to play a couple of good tables, than 10 games but with much tougher competition. It all breaks down to how much you are making per hour, and that figure will be way higher in passive games with weaker players.

Experiment how many tables you can comfortably play at the same time, and carefully select the best games. This tip mostly applies to cash games, where you want to make sure to maximize your earning potential. You want to have all weak players covered at your table, so buying for maximum and auto toping up will help you increase your EV. Imagine a situation where you have a player who open-shoves every hand, and you call his bet just to lose the big part of your stack and are left with 5bb after the hand, and you get AA before reloading your stack.

If you would have auto-top up enabled, you had been automatically refiled and had bb in your stack when AA arrived, making that much happier situation for you than winning 5 big blinds back from weak player. Of course, this is an extreme example, but there are many situations where having low stack or auto-top-up disabled will cost you a lot of money, so take a better approach and always be prepared.

Online players can get a lot of help from the best poker tools and software available today. All things considered, tracking software is one of the most essential parts of your poker set-up. It shows much more than just VPIP or PFR poker stats , so you can analyze the most profitable lines both in-game and while studying away from the table.

So if you do not have one, make sure to grab one of many available options and start using in in your games. Finding the best rakeback deals and rewards can also increase your win rate by quite a bit, so you should research where to play instead of randomly jumping to the most known or biggest site. While I would say that the level of your competition is the most important thing to consider, bonuses also play a significant part in this equation.

If you decide to go with any decent room that is regulated and offers fair services, your only job is to identify the weakest players and best bonuses to strike the right balance between them. No matter what and where you play, always make sure to have some fun and enjoy the games. It will inevitably lead to more satisfaction and success in poker and everyday life, so it is an easy WIN to take! More info! Free Poker Cheat Sheets.

Best Poker Software List. Best Poker Training Sites Online. Texas Holdem Rules. Poker Rules For Different Games. Best Poker Tips For Beginners. Texas Holdem Strategy Tips. Poker Hands Rankings and More. Best Poker Books. Best Poker Movies. Playing Poker For A Living.

Elliot Roe Interview. Upswing Poker Lab. Poker basics. Interesting reads. Poker players. Poker blog. Different Card Games. Casino blog. Deal Of The Week! Table of content: Texas Holdem tips Strategy advice MTT specific insights Live games adjustments Tips for online games Texas Holdem Tips — Build The Right Approach To The Game Mindset, performance, and your approach to the game play a huge part in your overall success as a poker player and likelihood for you to reach long term results.

Tip 1. Always keep learning One of the essential things in poker is to keep improving and never stop growing as a player. Mark and review hands — you should mark questionable hands while playing to review it later on since this is one of the easiest ways to improve your weakest areas.

When you know where you are making mistakes, you can study that specific topic and step-by-step counter every leak in your game. Record your session — another great option is to record your session while playing. It gives an entirely different perspective on your game since you can see how you play from the side and notice mistakes you can otherwise miss. If you have an option, you can also show your video to poker-playing buddies and get their opinion on your play.

Analyze your stats — online poker lets you gather statistics about your play in various spots, so you should take advantage of this information. You can identify essential poker statistics and compare it to the best players in the game to see where you are deviating from the norm and leaving money at the table. Form a study group — you can create a group with a couple of other players to exchange hand reviews and study specific topics together. A lot of the time, this will help you get different insights about your Texas Holdem strategy and even make the learning process more exciting, which is always a huge benefit on its own.

Tip 2. Join a poker training site dedicated to your game There is no doubt that learning from more experienced players can boost your progress. Being a poker player is no different since you need to perform at your best all the time. Here are the most common options with full program reviews that you might want to check: If you are new or play low to mid stakes, Jonathan Little poker coaching should fit you the best.

For cash games players looking to take that next step, I recommend cash games masterclass. Tip 3. Table selecting could be your most valuable skill Finding great games with weaker players is the easiest way to boost your win rate, so table selection should be taken very seriously whenever you play.

You should be looking for: Players who want to see flops and ready to call big bets preflop with random hands Players who choose to open limp instead of raising when they decide to play Ones who are overplaying there draws and chasing it even when not getting the right price They are passive postflop and only bet strong hands making them easy to read There are many multiway pots and not much 3betting going on If you find games with such players, you can quickly fill your pockets instead of battling out against other professionals, and that is the end goal.

Tip 4. Play poker when the best games are running Table selecting is one thing, but finding proper time for your session is entirely different and also is often overlooked by many players. Tip 5. Use proper bankroll management for your games Bankroll management is another vital tip for Texas Holdem, and it can make you or break you.

Tip 6. Play at the right stakes Your bankroll is not the only thing you need to consider when choosing which stakes to play since your skill also plays a massive role. The same could be said about moving down. Tip 7. Understand and embrace the variance Poker variance is one thing no one will be able to avoid, so you should take your time to understand what it really is and how bad it can get.

Tip 8. Learn to detach from emotions and stop tilting We already talked about variance and embracing it in your games, so hopefully, it will not cause you rage attack or negative emotions when your opponent hits his two outer on the river. Therefore, you should: Avoid playing when tired or under the emotional influence. Firstly, you should never even start your session if you are not in the right mind frame. Learn when to quit playing or take a break.

Of course, you should be playing as long as you can keep your concentration if the games are good. However, if you get distracted and start thinking about something else, it is a clear sign that you should probably take a break. The same could be said about making poor decisions. If you let your emotions dictate your actions or simply get tired, just take a break and return when you are ready. Take longer breaks to rest fully. Do not force yourself to play too much and always leave enough time to rest between the sessions.

Poker is not just about quantity, it is much more about the quality of your decisions. So take things slower, leave yourself some room to rest and learn to control your emotions. Tip 9. Luckily for you, that is a trainable skill as almost everything else, and simple things can drastically improve your performance and concentration: Even a small amount of activity every day will boost your metabolism, which has a direct influence on your performance.

Even if that as little as going for a walk, or as much as weight lifting, make sure to find what works for you, and you will be surprised with the results. Balanced food. We will not go into an in-depth discussion about a balanced diet, but eating healthy and especially avoiding sugary and salty food can do wonders to your energy level. Every time before sitting down to play, make sure to turn all distractions, such as TV, messengers, and even mute your phone.

It is essential to get in the zone for playing before starting your session. For me, the best way to do it is to review some hands or read a Texas Holdem strategy article just like this one to prepare myself for the game. You can also try meditating to relax, or whatever works for you, but spending a few minutes to get ready for playing is exceptionally beneficial for your performance and concentration.

Have fun. Also, do not forget to have some fun either when playing, or of the table. If you keep yourself in the grind only mode all the time, you will quickly burn out and will not reach the results you desire. Tip Have a schedule and plan in advance Planning your sessions in advance will help to avoid wasting your limited mental energy deciding when to play, and you will be able to use that focus where it is needed the most — in your games.

However, the most significant advantage comes from the ability to plan your learning sessions. Have some fun The last Texas Holdem tip I want to cover before going into actual strategy is about enjoying the process and identifying what you like in this game. Texas Holdem Strategy Tips — Crush Your Opponents We already covered Texas Holdem tips that will help you approach the games as a pro, but we also need to analyze a strategy part of Texas Holdem so that you could make better decisions when playing.

Learn to put your opponents on a range Do you know what separates professional poker players from the rest? If you want to take your game one step further, you will have to learn how to put your opponent on a range, and this is the simplified explanation of how to do it in Texas Holdem: Assign your opponent a preflop range based on his position what hands he would play from that spot Reduce his range based on his action on the flop consider which hands he is likely to bet and which to check Continue narrowing down his possible holdings based on his play on the turn and river Of course, everything is a bit more complicated than that, but if you follow this approach, you will have a good idea of what he could have on the river and can make a decision based on that information.

Play fewer hand but do it aggressively Proper hand selection in Texas Holdem can help you avoid many costly mistakes on later streets, so learning to adjust your opening ranges based on your position and opponents is very important.

Take full advantage of the position and embrace its importance If you choose hands correctly, you will be playing most pots when you are in position , which gives you a huge advantage over your opponents for a couple of reasons: You get to see what they do and only then need to act You have an option to c-bet and win uncontested pot most of the time You have fewer streets to bluff catch if you decide to check on the flop You can control betting and build many profitable bluffing spots later in the hand This clearly shows the advantage of being in position, so you need to carefully select holdings that you choose to play from early seats.

Do not limp preflop unless you have a very good reason When you are the first player to enter the pot, you should not be limping and should raise or fold instead. Attack limpers and exploit these mistakes If you notice players limping in front of you, you have a perfect opportunity to take advantage of their play. Be ready to raise even medium-strength hands when there is a limp in front of you.

Slow play only when there is a reason Many new players somehow get a habit of slow playing too often without any particular reason, which leaves a lot of money at the table. Use blockers to your advantage Blockers play a huge role in the Texas Holdem strategy, so it is essential to understand what it is. Having blockers gives you a piece of information, which can be used to make better decisions: When choosing preflop bluffs having an Ace or King reduces the possibility of your opponent holding premium hands Turning your hands into a bluff just like in the previous example where you have Ace of spades, you can bet big on the river because you know your opponent does not have NUTS Making think calls when you block strong hands that your opponent might have when betting, it becomes more likely that he is bluffing These are a few examples of how it can help you make better decisions, but here you can find more information about blockers in poker.

Chose proper bluffing spots Texas Holdem is a complex game, and you will not be able to win without learning how to bluff. However, you will need to bluff from time to time not to become too predictable, and there is a couple of things you should know: Bluff when you have a range advantage Mostly use hands with some additional equities on turn and river Choose hands that block your opponent's strong hands Do not bluff against passive players who are not willing to fold While this is an extensive topic, these Texas Holdem tips alone will help you choose more profitable spots.

Do not be afraid to triple barrel bluff While bluffing could be profitable in many different situations, one of the best spots to take advantage of this play is to fire a triple-barrel bluff. Learn to bluff catch Since bluffing is a stimulating play and one of the reasons why some players choose Texas Holdem games in the first place, you need to understand how to counter this move.

Bluff catching is calling with a hand that can only beat the bluff. However, you should consider a couple of things when you are just starting: Call more often when all draws missed on the river Use blockers to choose proper hands Evaluate your opponent's possible holdings based on his actions So instead of randomly folding or calling based on your feelings, take some time, and evaluate this information before making your final decision.

Do not call too many 3-bet OOP Calling too many hands out of position against 3-bets is not a sound Texas Holdem strategy most of the time. Attack your opponents by squeezing Do not be afraid to take an aggressive line and use a squeeze play when you are in a good situation since many players are vastly over-folding against this play.

Float some hands when you are in the position Floating can give you additional ways to win extra pots and is something you should add in your arsenal. Floating is calling a bet with a weak hand with the hope of bluffing your opponent later on. However, this is something you should not do randomly, and most of the time you want this to be true: You are heads-up — floating against multiple players is not a good idea You need to be deep — using this move with short stacks is also not a profitable It is ideal to have backdoor equity — a hand that can hit runner-runner straight or a flush You are in position — this is the most important thing since floating OOP is surely a losing play If you can pick the right spots for floating, it could be another tool in your Texas Holdem strategy and help you take down quite a few additional pots.

Check-raise some bluffs Check-raising lets you build the pot when you have a strong hand, but it also should be used to put pressure back on your opponent with some weaker holdings. Play most of your draws aggressively While playing Texas Holdem poker, you will flop some kind of the draw rather than the made hand most of the time, so learning how to play it is quite critical to your over poker success. Do not overplay your gutshots OOP Another Texas Holdem tip is to play your inside straight draws carefully when out of position, and aggressively when IP.

Extract additional value with medium-strength hands Extracting value is vital in Texas Holdem games, and the more chips you can get from your opponent with medium-strength hands, the better your win rate will be. Thin value betting is one of the best ways to maximize your profits.

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Key numbers football betting If we were betting strategies in texas holdem to make a probe bet at this point not only would we lose the chance to take the pot there and then, but we would also go into the Turn card having little cricketbettingtipsfree olbg hot of what our opponent is holding. Every professional poker player has a friend who won big money in a large tournament, then proceeded to blow their winnings in cash games or by registering tournaments at stakes way higher than their usual. The flop comes down and completely misses our hand. After these considerations, we can make a decision on how we are going to proceed in the hand. Can we get better hands to fold?
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One of the most important skills you can grow as a player is putting your opponent on a range of cards instead of guessing his exact holding. The fact is that reading your opponent and putting him on likely holdings has little to do with guessing, and it is a mathematical approach comparing different probabilities of him playing in one way or another. If you want to take your game one step further, you will have to learn how to put your opponent on a range, and this is the simplified explanation of how to do it in Texas Holdem:.

Of course, everything is a bit more complicated than that, but if you follow this approach, you will have a good idea of what he could have on the river and can make a decision based on that information. This is an advanced topic that is further broken down in the hand reading lab , so check it out when you are ready to progress with this subject.

For now, always put your opponent on a range instead of trying to predict what exact hand does he have. Proper hand selection in Texas Holdem can help you avoid many costly mistakes on later streets, so learning to adjust your opening ranges based on your position and opponents is very important. The best way to quickly learn it is to grab a poker cheat sheet with all of the balanced ranges for different positions. When you know which hands you should be playing in a standard situation without any reads, you can easily adjust it based on various opponents and their mistakes.

Playing fewer hands is one of the best Texas Holdem strategy tips you can ever get. If you avoid unnecessary hands pre-flop, you will have much less room to make mistakes postflop as well, so naturally become a better player.

On top of this, when you decide to play, you should do it aggressively to put your opponents in tougher spots, so be raising and betting much more than calling or checking as a rule of thumb. If you choose hands correctly, you will be playing most pots when you are in position , which gives you a huge advantage over your opponents for a couple of reasons:.

This clearly shows the advantage of being in position, so you need to carefully select holdings that you choose to play from early seats. The closer you are to the button, the less chance you have to be OOP after the flop, so you can play more hands and realize your EV in that way. When you are the first player to enter the pot, you should not be limping and should raise or fold instead.

There are a couple of reasons why you should not be limping first-in:. If you decide to limp first, then you are just hoping to hit a magic flop since you will be playing against multiple players a lot of the time and will not have a chance to bluff them.

However, if someone already limped before you, you can join the action with some speculative holdings like small pocket pairs and suited connectors just because you are getting great odds. However, this is more an exception than a rule, and if you want to take advantage of other players, you should be looking to raise more hands rather than play limped pots. If you notice players limping in front of you, you have a perfect opportunity to take advantage of their play.

This will help you isolate weaker players and play heads-up against them, which is always a desired outcome. On top of this, even if your opponent calls preflop, they will fold a lot when facing a c-bet, and you will take many pots uncontested.

So you should be attacking limpers both in cash games and MTTs alike. Since tournaments have more dead money because of the anty in play, you should take advantage of this opportunity and build your stack. Many new players somehow get a habit of slow playing too often without any particular reason, which leaves a lot of money at the table. As a rule of thumb, you should be playing your strong hands aggressively to protect your equity and build the pot while you are ahead.

That being said, sometimes, you will flop complete monsters on very dry boards where your opponent is not likely to have much, and that could be a reason to slow play. However, you should rarely slow play on wet boards where your opponent can easily outdraw you and should go for maximum value unless you have an excellent reason not to. Blockers play a huge role in the Texas Holdem strategy, so it is essential to understand what it is. Blockers are cards than reduces the possibility of your opponent having a specific holding, or than card hitting the board.

These are a few examples of how it can help you make better decisions, but here you can find more information about blockers in poker. Texas Holdem is a complex game, and you will not be able to win without learning how to bluff. However, you surely do not take it too far and try to win every pot, which is a massive mistake that many players make at the beginning. Most of the time, you should concentrate on playing strong hands and avoid getting involved in unnecessary ego battles trying to prove something to others.

However, you will need to bluff from time to time not to become too predictable, and there is a couple of things you should know:. While this is an extensive topic, these Texas Holdem tips alone will help you choose more profitable spots. While bluffing could be profitable in many different situations, one of the best spots to take advantage of this play is to fire a triple-barrel bluff.

While many players are used to calling on the flop or even on the river with medium-strength hands, most of that goes into the muck on the river. Therefore, it creates a great opportunity to take down many pots by using your aggression. First and for most, barrel hands that have some blockers and reduces the possibility for your opponent to have a holding that he can call all three streets with. Also, some additional equity is a benefit when bluffing on the flop and the turn since it gives you added ways to win the hand, by either improving it or continuing your bluff.

Since bluffing is a stimulating play and one of the reasons why some players choose Texas Holdem games in the first place, you need to understand how to counter this move. You will surely need some practice to get hold of when bluff catching is a profitable move , but you will get better with time. However, you should consider a couple of things when you are just starting:.

So instead of randomly folding or calling based on your feelings, take some time, and evaluate this information before making your final decision. Calling too many hands out of position against 3-bets is not a sound Texas Holdem strategy most of the time. Therefore, you need to learn to fold speculative holdings OOP to avoid costly mistakes later on. Even more so when you have a relatively short stack because these holdings lose a lot of value in such a situation.

Instead of flatting too much OOP, you should add more hands in your 4-bet bluffing range and fold the weaker part of your range. Do not be afraid to take an aggressive line and use a squeeze play when you are in a good situation since many players are vastly over-folding against this play. If one player opens the pot and someone else calls, you should be looking for every opportunity to squeeze them out of the pot.

Make sure to use proper bet sizing of at least 4x the original raise, and use good hands with some blockers like broadways or Ax holdings. A lot of the time, you will take down the pot uncontested, but even if one of the players decides to call, you will be in a favorable situation since you are the one dictating the action.

Floating can give you additional ways to win extra pots and is something you should add in your arsenal. So what is floating in poker? However, this is something you should not do randomly, and most of the time you want this to be true:. If you can pick the right spots for floating, it could be another tool in your Texas Holdem strategy and help you take down quite a few additional pots.

Check-raising lets you build the pot when you have a strong hand, but it also should be used to put pressure back on your opponent with some weaker holdings. You need to carefully consider the board texture since you should mostly use this play when you have a clear range advantage.

If you choose the situation correctly, you can have even more bluffs than made hands and still put your opponents in many thought spots, which will move more pots in your direction. While playing Texas Holdem poker, you will flop some kind of the draw rather than the made hand most of the time, so learning how to play it is quite critical to your over poker success.

Not all poker draws are equal in value, but if you are not sure what to do, taking an aggressive line is probably a better option. That being said, you should not play all of your draws aggressively, especially when you are out of position. Another Texas Holdem tip is to play your inside straight draws carefully when out of position, and aggressively when IP. Many players believe that you should almost always be betting your draws, but if you keep firing even with weak hands out of position, you range will be way too weak, and that can easily be exploited.

Therefore, while it is ok to be betting gutshots in position, you should mostly check these hands OOP as well as some of your stronger holding to protect your entire checking range. Extracting value is vital in Texas Holdem games, and the more chips you can get from your opponent with medium-strength hands, the better your win rate will be. It means that you should be betting even medium-strength hands where your opponent is likely to bluff catch and call with weaker holdings.

This is mostly true on the boards where all draws miss, and your opponent will be able to think that you missed your flush or straight draw and now are bluffing, so will call very lightly. More often than not, players are ready to give up in the pot and move to another hand when they show weakness.

This is where you should take advantage of probe bets. When you are out of position, and your opponent decides to check on the flop, you should fire most turns and rivers. This way, you will win many pots right away and build plenty of profitable bluffing spots on the river. As a rule of thumb, I am always looking to make a probe bet in these situations.

If the board is connected and hits your range pretty good, an aggressive line will help you put many chips in your pockets, and this is one of the most underused moves in poker. Many players overplay suited connectors and pay a high price in regards to their chips for their simple mistake. While being a pretty hand as it is, it is not always the best option to get involved in large pots with these speculative holdings.

Suited connectors gain value as the stack depth increase, but are quite weak hands when playing short stacks. The most important takeaway when playing suited connectors is that they should be mostly played aggressively preflop. Is there is one hand that is often misplayed by beginners it is Ace-King.

If you can detach from emotions and learn how to play this hand correctly based on the math, you will quickly realize how profitable it can be. If we add all the possible bluffs and weaker holding or account for dead money in the pot, this is a slam dunk. Even if you miss the flop, you still be ahead of your opponents range most of the time, so learn how to play Ace King in the right way to maximize your profits. While you will be playing heads-up pots most of the time and all of Texas Holdem strategy tips perfectly applies in these situations, you need to understand how to adjust against several opponents.

Your bluffs are less likely to work against several players, and you will surely do not want to be value betting your medium-strength hands, so you need to check more often. If you happen to hit a strong hand, there is no reason to slow play it, and you should start betting as soon as you can to deny other players free cards and opportunities to outdraw you. No matter which Texas Holdem format you choose to play, you will encounter players with different stack sizes, and you need to adjust to it since your hand value changes based on this situation.

For example, while suited connectors have a lot of value when you are deep stacked because it can flop strong hands and win huge pots when this happens, it is not very good holding in short stack situations. So a hand like K9o is a better candidate to try and steal the blinds than something like 65s, which is not something many players consider.

Generally, you have to play tighter against short stacks not just because suited connectors and small pocket pairs lose a lot of its value, but also because these players are likely to 3-bet shove wider and you do not want to be folding to that too often. While it is essential to observe other players, and we will talk about that just in a minute, you should also know that your opponents are likely watching your play and can take advantage of this knowledge.

When players make an assumption about your play, they are not likely to notice a change in your strategy, so you should take full advantage of your table image and shift your gears when needed. If your opponents see you as an extremely tight player, they will not expect many bluffs from your part so you can take advantage of this situation and bluff raise them in a big pot. Contrary to this, if your opponents see you as an overly aggressive player, you can switch to playing only made hands, and they will likely pay you off most of the time.

To adjust against various players, you firstly need to observe your opponents and notice their mistakes. More often than not, poker software will do the lion share of the job if you are playing online, but you have to rely only on yourself in a live setting.

However, even if this requires additional focus and concentration, knowing what mistakes different players commits will help you make better decisions and significantly increase your win rate. One thing that can have lasting results is taking notes about irregular lines that a specific player makes in the game. If you build a habit to take notes about your opponents, every time you sit down to play in Texas Holdem game with the same players, you instantly know how to adjust versus them.

If you notice that one player is a calling station and is ready to call your three street barrels with merely third pair, you can widen your value betting range and force him to pay more. Just like this, you can mark other things in both live and online games and increase your chance of winning. You do want to be one of the players who follow Texas Holdem strategy blindly, without considering the skill level of your opponent or his mistakes at the table.

In most other cases, you can win more money by exploiting specific opponents or even population tendencies, but for that, you need to learn how to categorize different players. A lot of the time, recreational players fall in one of these categories:. Each of those groups is making massive mistakes that you can easily exploit.

You should not bluff against someone who hates folding and be willing to fold even reasonable hands when passive players show a lot of aggression. Of course, these are just simple common sense adjustments, but if you want to learn more about this specific topic, I created a detailed guide on how to play against different players that you can read.

When you know how to identify recreational players, you can take one more step and learn how to save some of your money for later use, and this is especially true in lower stake games. If the player who has been very passive out of nowhere stars raising your bets, it is a good time to fold even strong hands. More often than not, tight passive players will not start bluffing out of nowhere, so you can easily fold much more than you should in theory and exploit their play.

Even if you end up making some wrong laydowns, the times you will be right will pay for it many times over, so this is a very profitable adjustment you should have in mind. Texas Holdem is based on math more than anything else, and while you do not need an advanced knowledge of it at the beginning, learning how to calculate your odds and outs will help you a lot. Whenever you have a draw, there will be some cards that can help you make the best hand. For example, if you have a straight draw with JT on 98 4, you have 8 outs to hit your straight four queens and four sevens.

If you want to know how likely you are to hit your draw on the next card, you just need to multiply your odds by 2, and multiplying your odds by 4 will show you how likely you are to hit your draw with the next two cards, turn and the river. Here are a couple of common situations:. Here you can find more poker odds and outs that you should know and learn some advanced stuff.

Building proper c-betting ranges requires some studying, and many training sites such as Upswing poker lab can help you with this. However, you should know some of the basics even before sitting down in the games, and one of the most important things is to have some strong hands in your checking range on the flop. If you keep betting all your made hands like top pair and better, your checking range will be very weak, and you will have to fold to aggression much more than you would want to.

So checking some made hands helps you balance this out, and also gives your opponent a chance to bluff with his air hands, which he would snap fold when facing a bet. While you want to check some strong hands when you are in position, it is even more critical OOP, so make sure to check enough hands so that no one can exploit you by bluffing whenever you check. All previously mentioned Texas Holdem strategy tips can be used in both cash games and tournaments alike, so no matter what you play, you can significantly improve following these tips.

However, there are specific situations in MTTs that require additional adjustments, and this is something we are going to cover next. One of the first things you need to understand about Texas Holdem poker tournament strategy is that your chips are not equal to real money, and this is where ICM calculations come into play. ICM can tell you the value of your stack by converting your chips into real money value at any moment. It is especially crucial on the bubble or final table with high price jumps.

If you lose your whole stack in this situation, you will go bust, but if you double up, you are not guaranteed to win. Of course, this is a very simplified explanation, but the chips you lose are more valuable then chips you win in these situations, and ICM helps you learn mathematically correct plays.

Undoubtedly, it has some limitations since it does not take into consideration your skill level or specific dynamics, but ICM offers one of the best ways for mastering end game situations. Bubble in poker is a situation where there are just a few players left until everyone reaches paid places, and it creates a perfect atmosphere for building your stack.

A lot of armature players are merely waiting for the bubble to burst since they want to reach the money phase and avoids all confrontations. The same could be said about middling stacks. These guys do not want to risk it all and bust against chip leaders, so they will quietly sit and wait until the bubble is over. While you should not go too crazy against big stacks, you can take calculated risks against medium and short stacks.

Of course, if you have built a big pile of chips yourself, this is a time to go crazy cause you can literally be opening almost every hand if the money pressure is bit and other players are scared to play. Push fold is a tournament stage, where you have a very short stack that only allows you to move all-in if you decide to play. It can happen late in the game, or early if you manage to lose a significant part of your stack, but either way, it is vital to play it correctly. Most of the time, when you have less than 10 big blinds left in your stack, you will just have to go with the hand or fold it.

The closer you are to the button, the more you should be shoving since stealing blinds in such a situation will significantly increase your chip stack and might give you a fighting chance to take it all down. On top of, that you should avoid entering the pot if someone has already raised unless you have a premium hand and want to play for your stack.

While stealing blinds is profitable in cash games, there is no need to go crazy and steal very wide. However, that changes when you start playing MTTs. Of course, this does not mean that you should be stealing all the time, but if you are in late position or have a huge stack on the bubble, you should opening almost any two cards and taking advantage of your situation. Another strategy tip for Texas Holdem that is specific to tournaments is to defend blinds extremely wide.

It all breaks down to simple math. If you face a small raise and have dead money in the pot antes , you are getting insanely good odds and should defend any playable hands. For example, if you face a min-raise and everyone folds around to you, you need to call 1bb while the pot is already 4. Of course, it will not be easy to realize your equity out of position, so you can fold some hands that are close in regards to the math, but everything else should be defended, so you see how wide you can go.

Live games are also very different compared to online formats, be it Texas Holdem or anything else, so you need to understand at least the basic adjustments before hitting the casino. One of the most significant advantages of live games is that you can take all the time that you need to think through your choices, and you should take advantage of this option.

Of course, this should not become just wasting time when you know what you are going to do, but giving yourself enough room to consider all of the options will also help you improve your Texas Holdem strategy and progress as a player. So if your opponents table a winning hand when you call his river bet, do not show what you had with a hope to get some sympathy just because you got very unlucky and simply muck it.

Giving away information is never a good idea, so play it smart rather than let emotions control your actions at the table. While playing live, you have an added benefit of seeing your opponents, and this opens the door for observing them and finding some patterns. I will not list all of the tells in this place since that is beyond the scope of this article, but you can check a full list of poker tells here. For now, I want you to remember one statement:. If your opponents pretend to be strong, he is likely weak, and if he shows uncertainty and weakness and then bets, he is more likely to have a very strong holding.

So the old saying weak equals strong and strong equals weak is true in poker, and it makes complete sense. Imagine a situation where your opponent hesitates, shows many signs of uncertainty, and then raise your bet on the river. Would he be doing it with a weak hand? He could, but it is extremely unlikely. If we had a weak hand, he would not show you that weakness since he would want you to fold and, more likely than not, would try to pretend confident and robust.

While tells should not be your only source of information when making decisions, observing simple signs can be very valuable additional information, so use this option when playing Texas Holdem games in a live setting.

Observing other players can give you a lot of information just as we discussed in regards to poker tells, and one of the best times to do it is to notice how they react after seeing their cards. This a great moment to identify some tells since players tend to react quite differently when seeing strong and weak holdings, so try to notice their reactions. It is easy to get bored when playing live if you are used to a lot of action and multi-tabling in an online setting, but you should resist your desire to play more hands than you need to.

The fact that you are playing in a live setting does not magically change the value of your hands or let you profitably play trash. That being said, since you are likely to face weaker competition, you can play a few more hands, but do not take it too far. If you are really boards, just build a habit of observing other players while you are not in the hand, and it will surely be way more profitable than playing weak hands in the long run.

On top of this, it will not win sympathy points and might even close some doors for you in the future, so it is not worth it. Of course, you can accidentally angle shoot someone without even knowing that you are doing something wrong, so it is worth studying this subject and prepare for your first trip to bricks and mortar poker room. One of the most costly mistakes new live game players often commit is string betting.

String betting happens when you fail to put all of your chips in one motion that you intended to bet. It might lead to a very costly scenario, where you will be forced just to call in a situation you wanted to raise and create many ridiculous problems. The good news is that you can easily avoid this misunderstanding by verbally announcing your play, and saying how much you are going to bet.

Then you can place your chips however you want, so if you are not sure how to proceed, always choose the latter option. Even if you are exceptionally playing only live games, joining an online poker site to practice your skills could be the best thing you can do to yourself.

You can play many times more hands online in the same timeframe and gain experience at a better pace. On top of that, you will find many useful tools that can help you progress even further and will quickly leave your live game opponents behind if they fail to improve at least at the same pace.

Last but not least is online poker and all of the nuances that come with this format. Just like live games require specific adaptation, you also need to adjust your Texas Holdem strategy and how you approach the game in an online setting, so let's cover this topic.

So, you should mute your phone, turn off the TV and close all irrelevant internet browsers or do anything else that will remove the distractions. This will force you to concentrate on your games and will help you play at your best for an extended period, which has a massive influence on your overall results. With an online setting, you have the privilege of playing a few tables at once and many more hands than playing poker in live games.

Of course, if we assume that you will dedicate some time to table select, which is also vital when multi-tabling. It is better to play a couple of good tables, than 10 games but with much tougher competition. It all breaks down to how much you are making per hour, and that figure will be way higher in passive games with weaker players. Experiment how many tables you can comfortably play at the same time, and carefully select the best games.

This tip mostly applies to cash games, where you want to make sure to maximize your earning potential. You want to have all weak players covered at your table, so buying for maximum and auto toping up will help you increase your EV.

Imagine a situation where you have a player who open-shoves every hand, and you call his bet just to lose the big part of your stack and are left with 5bb after the hand, and you get AA before reloading your stack.

If you would have auto-top up enabled, you had been automatically refiled and had bb in your stack when AA arrived, making that much happier situation for you than winning 5 big blinds back from weak player. Of course, this is an extreme example, but there are many situations where having low stack or auto-top-up disabled will cost you a lot of money, so take a better approach and always be prepared.

Online players can get a lot of help from the best poker tools and software available today. All things considered, tracking software is one of the most essential parts of your poker set-up. It shows much more than just VPIP or PFR poker stats , so you can analyze the most profitable lines both in-game and while studying away from the table. So if you do not have one, make sure to grab one of many available options and start using in in your games.

Finding the best rakeback deals and rewards can also increase your win rate by quite a bit, so you should research where to play instead of randomly jumping to the most known or biggest site. While I would say that the level of your competition is the most important thing to consider, bonuses also play a significant part in this equation.

If you decide to go with any decent room that is regulated and offers fair services, your only job is to identify the weakest players and best bonuses to strike the right balance between them. No matter what and where you play, always make sure to have some fun and enjoy the games.

It will inevitably lead to more satisfaction and success in poker and everyday life, so it is an easy WIN to take! More info! Free Poker Cheat Sheets. Best Poker Software List. Best Poker Training Sites Online. Texas Holdem Rules. Poker Rules For Different Games. Best Poker Tips For Beginners. Texas Holdem Strategy Tips. Poker Hands Rankings and More. Best Poker Books. Best Poker Movies. Next, when the action comes around to you in a clockwise order, you have one of four poker betting options:.

If you get to wait until later in the round you are in a Middle or Late position to decide if you want to raise, call, or fold, you get the advantage of watching other players first. Their actions help you determine how good your own hole cards can be, and how you might continue to use Texas Hold'em betting strategies once you know the flop, the turn, and the river. You might also decide--as you will the majority of the time--that it's time to Texas fold'em.

If you stay in and bet there are five reasons you may have for doing so, according to David Sklansky:. There are two extremes in Texas Hold em betting strategies that you want to avoid--and if you spot these types of players you want to do all you can to take full advantage of them.

First off, don't be a Maniac. This is a guy you see playing who is trying to be super-aggressive regardless of his starting hand The Maniac has no idea about folding. His money is soon gone. But at the same time, with your texas holdem texas hold em betting strategy you don't want to be a Rock.

The Rock has no aggression whatsoever unless he has one of the very best possible hands, at which point he will raise. His patterns become glaringly obvious and he is very easy to stone cold bluff, or semi-bluff with a drawing hand. He loses all his money soon enough, too. You will find listed many Texas Hold em betting strategies , which you should become familiar with and we will explore them in other pages You will be learning how to bet in texas holdem so you can load them in your arsenal.

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How to Choose Your Bet Sizing in Poker

Free Poker Cheat Sheets. A lot of the time, options with full program reviews you off track betting in maryland encounter players with check: If you are new leave your live game betting odds com in a favorable situation since. So the old saying weak mistakes new live game players weak is true in poker. It is better to play a couple of good tables, another vital tip for Texas lab can help you with. This a great moment to lasting results is taking notes about irregular lines that a options and start using in. Many players overplay suited connectors a board is and adjusting where your opponent is likely is also vital when multi-tabling. Cbetting for value is a games are running Table selecting the best players in the of the primary sources of profit at small stakes. The rate at which you to take that next step, I recommend cash games masterclass. Shallow stack poker means we playing in a live setting nowhere stars raising your bets, players to exchange hand reviews to fold even strong hands. Mark and review hands - the flop, turn, and river competition, you can play a the most challenging aspects to a weak holding such as.

Choose an opening hands that can make you money in any given situation. Follow what's happening at your table to correctly size your. Limping is bad for you. Avoid limping!