Bluffing has always been an essential part of poker. Sometimes, an ability to bluff can help you to win even in unwinnable situations. Today, we are going to take a look at 5 poker bluffing tips that will help you to increase your gaming skills.
Poker bluffing tip #1 – take care of your table image
The first item on our list of poker bluffing tips has nothing to do with the game itself. However, this is an essential thing that you need to know in order to succeed in poker.
Your table image is vital for both online and offline poker bluffing. When it comes to land-based casinos, following basic casino dress code and etiquette already increases your chances substantially. Nobody is going to be taken seriously in case they look like someone who just came across the poker table in the middle of a pub crawl night.
The same tip also applies to online gaming. Most of the online poker sites in the US allow you to customize your profile. Finding a good picture and making sure your online poker profile is filled are the most basic things you can do – players rarely fall for an empty profile with no stats.
Poker bluffing tip #2 – avoid bluffing without a backup
Although media has been actively popularizing the image of a poker player who can bluff with the weakest hand and still win, this is what you actually shouldn’t do. Pure bluffing is risky. Imagine that you have a 6 of spades and a 2 of clubs. You decide to call, and when you see a flop of J of hearts, 8 of spades, and 7 of clubs, you realize that you have nothing. In this scenario, bluffing can cost you a lot of money. As the hand is neither high nor promising, you are much more likely to simply lose your money.
Let’s take a look at another example. You have a Q of spades and an A of spades. When the flop comes, you see that with a K of spades, J of hearts, and a 7 of spades, you still have nothing. But at the same time, your odds of getting a straight or a flush are pretty solid. And if you add just enough bluffing, you have a jackpot in your bag.
As you can see, bluffing should serve as a backup that comes in handy when you have a promising hand. Of course, in case your opponents are not very experienced and you see a perfect opportunity for bluffing, don’t hesitate to take a chance. But remember that a potentially winning hand combined with some bluffing can help you to win.
Poker bluffing tip #3 – don’t bluff too frequently
People who have just started playing poker often make the same mistake – they bluff too often. Some people simply don’t want to surrender and they think that bluffing will help to avoid folding. This kind of behavior is very easy to detect. If you are going to bluff every time you have a weak hand, it will simply make bluffing useless. Of course, your opponents may fold once or twice, but sooner or later, they will find out the pattern anyway. Don’t forget that bluffing is a sophisticated instrument, and you shouldn’t use it all the time.
Poker bluffing tip #4 – make sure you pick the best position
Some people don’t pay attention to where they sit when it comes to online poker. However, poker position is one of the most important concepts in the game.
Let’s imagine that you have a promising hand and you decide to bluff. But before that, you usually want to see how skillful your opponents are and whether or not any of them bluffs. The right position gives you a chance to check how your opponents play. If you are playing Texas Hold’em or any other community game, the dealer position is definitely the best one.
Being on the button allows you to “scan” your opponents and assess the situation before you make the first move. Moreover, late positions are much better for bluffing, as other players expect you to have a better hand. Of course, this doesn’t mean that if you are under the gun, you shouldn’t bluff at all. However, considering your position before you decide how to act and using your positional advantage can be vital.
Poker bluffing tip #5 – practice your bluffing in micro stakes games
The last poker bluffing tip for today can be applied to any other skill – make sure you always practice. Although some people might not have access to land-based casinos and poker rooms, online gambling sites can become a great place to perfect your techniques.
One of the best ways you can practice your bluffing skills is by playing in micro stakes games. There are two reasons why. Firstly, these kinds of games are usually full of poker rookies who are more likely to fall for bluffing. Secondly, you wouldn’t have to spend a fortune before you learn how to bluff properly – some online poker tournaments have a $0.02 buy-in.
Nowadays, online poker sites in the US provide players with an opportunity to practice their poker skills from the comfort of their homes. One of the best places for playing on micro stakes is Betsson Poker. The platform offers a vast number of online poker rooms of any format, along with exciting freerolls and VIP tournaments. And if you want to learn more, make sure you check our review about Betsson poker.