Although the game of poker is over 200 years old, new players are joining in the fun every day, learning about the classic game with the goal to play casually with friends or even more seriously in real money tournaments.
Either way, enthusiastic rookies often make errors in their gameplay, typical of anyone who is beginning something new. However, in a game like poker, beginners' mistakes should be called out and noted by new players to prevent them from being repeated in the future.
Below we will summarize some of the most common missteps and how to avoid them.
Not Studying Enough
Rookies who are first entering the world of poker may believe that they are fully prepared and ready to dive into multiple games after playing just a few casual hands. But the mistake these beginners often make is a lack of real study.
Beginners often neglect to take the time to learn the game's ins and outs.
Before moving on to real money games, beginners should study their opponents' plays religiously. This will help them to decide which improvements they can make to maximize gameplay and wins.
Learning through trial and error at the tables is certainly not the only way to get better when you have a wealth of educational material at your fingertips in this digital era.
Furthermore, there is a variety of literature on the subject, old school and modern, and many books that can greatly benefit all contemporary players. In fact, it isn't far-fetched to say that poker players should spend even more time studying the game than they do playing it.
Even the most talented players of today had to start somewhere, taking the time to study their gameplay and adopt specific strategies that work for them personally.
An extremely common mistake poker that beginners make is overplaying their hands. When you have been playing the game for a while, you will become much better at this because you will have gained the strength and discipline needed to toss out the bad poker hands.
However, beginners may not realize that playing too many hands before the flop is a losing strategy.
A great way to practice this is by watching experienced poker players’ hands and note how they deal with incoming cards. Experts in the game rarely overplay hands; viewing their gameplay may bring you the confidence to do the same.
Improper Bet Sizing
Bet sizing is a fundamental element of poker, and many beginners struggle with approaching the subject when they are first starting out. Often, rookie players may make inappropriate bet sizes or give their opponents an obvious idea of the cards they are holding.
This is where the real strategy of the game comes into play. The way a player bets is equally as important as the cards they’re holding. Sizing bets suitably requires reading the table well and examining all opportunities.
As this is a continued rookie mistake, practice makes perfect. Friendly games can help teach players the best ways to make successful bets before moving on to real money tournaments.
Playing out of Position
Another typical beginner misstep is acting out of position by entering a pot or calling a raise without having a plan. The order of gameplay is extremely important at the poker table as it gives certain opponents a level up over others depending on their position.
Knowing where you stand as a rookie at the table is vital and will help you avoid making a move out of turn, potentially putting yourself at a disadvantage.
Playing Out of Emotions
Finally, emotions should be left at the door when it comes to poker. Having control over your feelings is your number one concern and will lead to more poker profitability than you can imagine.
Although this may be more difficult at the start, the best poker players out there have mastered emotional control and discipline, and you can easily learn how to do the same. Being consistent in this effort has even helped put poker players at the top of their EQ charts.
Professional poker players are the best of the best when it comes to self-control and willpower.