Posts Tagged ‘bankroll management’

Bankroll Management for Low Stakes Poker Tournament Players

Tuesday, March 26th, 2013

We all know that big-time poker players get all of the attention since they’re spending major money to compete for huge tournament prize pools. But the truth is that the majority of the poker community is based in the low stakes world, where players are spending just $1 – $5 per buy-in.

Many of these low stakes tournament players are of the casual nature, and aren’t trying to make a living with the game. Some are more serious and hope to eventually supplement their income, or even become a full-time pro. Whatever the case may be, it’s important for every low stakes poker tournament player to know a thing or two about bankroll management. That said, here are a few quick tips.

Tip #1 – Divide your Bankroll into Buy-ins

A good general tip for managing a tourney bankroll is to divide your money up into buy-ins. It’s ideal to have 150-200 buy-ins for the stakes you play because of all the variance in online poker. But depending upon your skill level, you may be able to get away with anywhere from 50-100 buy-ins. Using our ideal example on a person with $300, they’d want to stick with $2 tourney buy-ins or less in order to survive the variance.

Tip #2 – Avoid Large Field Sizes

If money is an issue – as it is with most low stakes tournament grinders – you should stick with events that feature small field sizes. The reason why is because the bigger the field, the harder it will be to consistently cash. Sure the potential scores are bigger in large tournaments, but it takes the average player much longer to earn these big payouts. So you should definitely stick with smaller events in the beginning, then work your way up to bigger field sizes.

Tip #3 – Never stop improving

Just having good bankroll management isn’t going to guarantee you profits; in fact, it’ll just prolong the inevitable downfall of a bad player. You need to continually improve your skills along with exercising good bankroll management. Some of the different things that you can do to get better at online poker include joining training sites, hiring a poker coach, reading books, reading articles, browsing forums, and watching YouTube videos. The information is out there – it’s up to you to find it!


Tips for becoming a Winning MTT Player

Thursday, March 7th, 2013

One of the biggest draws to online poker is the fact that you could win a huge prize in any given tournament. Of course, few novices actually capture a big payout on their first few tries – though the hope is always there.

But since the average player isn’t going to get lucky right away, solid multi-table tournament play is more about grinding and learning your way to success. So if you’re just getting started down this road, here are some tips that’ll hopefully improve your play.

Tip #1: Focus on Bankroll Management

Most beginning poker players don’t last long because they don’t know anything about bankroll management. Luckily, this concept isn’t overly-difficult for people to learn since you should have 50-100 buy-ins for the stakes you play. 100 buy-ins is the conservative recommendation; but those who have prior poker experience might be able to get away with the 50 buy-in range.

So if you had a $500 bankroll, you’d want to stick with tournament buy-ins ranging from $5 – $10. The reason why is because this enables you to survive the variance associated with online poker and hopefully make some profits.

Tip #2: Invest in some Poker Training or Coaching

You simply can’t beat poker over the long-term if you don’t spend time studying the game. And articles, books and free YouTube videos are always great for this. However, the ultimate way to learn poker tournament strategy is by watching training videos or investing in a coach.

The latter method is more expensive because you’re paying a coach’s hourly fees. But this can definitely pay off if you find the right coach. Training videos are a little more reasonably-priced since you can pay a $30 monthly fee and watch as many videos as the site offers.

Tip #3: Understand Variance

The bigger the MTT’s you’re playing, the more variance you’ll be dealing with. So if you’re playing the Sunday Million on PokerStars, your big cashes will come few and far between – no matter how good you are. On the other hand, $5 buy-in MTT’s often have smaller field sizes, which enables you to cash more.

The style of tournaments you choose will all depend upon your goal. For example, if you’re fine with going on cold streaks while searching for the biggest payouts, large MTT’s should be good. However, if you want to keep cashing and gradually increasing your bankroll, look for the smaller MTT’s,

Above all, never stop learning the game and trying to expand your poker tournament knowledge. The best players continually seek the advice of others and know that there’s always room for improvement.

Are Win/Loss Limits applicable in Poker?

Saturday, April 28th, 2012

Those who play casino games a great deal are probably used to the concept of setting win and loss limits. With these, players set a predetermined amount of money that they’re willing to win or lose before quitting. For example, assuming your win limit was $50, you’d stop playing upon hitting this amount; if your loss limit was $50, you would quit playing after losing this much money.

Now some players wonder if win/loss limits also apply to poker games. After all, poker is a form of gambling – though it has lots of skill elements – so it only seems logical that win/loss limits would work here too. But the truth of the matter is that you’re much better off with sticking to plain ole’ bankroll management, and we’ll explain why.

It’s all about who you play with

The flaw in quitting a poker session after winning or losing a specific amount of money is that you fail to exploit weak opponents in favorable situations. For example, let’s say that you’re heads-up with a calling station who limps into lots of hands. Going further, let’s say that you manage to hit a win limit of $50 while playing against this terrible opponent. By leaving the table when the calling station still has money, you surrender an excellent opportunity to earn more profits. Obviously, the amount of money you earn shouldn’t be the issue here, but rather who you’re playing against instead.

Focus on Time Played

A better way to decide when you should stop playing online poker is when you’ve reached the point where you’re no longer making profitable decisions. For some people this may be after 2 hours, while others can play poker for 8 hours before they have trouble focusing. The more you play, the better you’ll be able to determine when this point is.

As we alluded to before, your opponents will play a huge part in how profitable your sessions will be. So if you’re stuck on a table full of highly-skilled players, a smart idea would be to jump off the table well before hitting any kind of loss limit. Case in point, focus on your opponents and playing when you’re at peak mental condition.

Micro Stakes Bankroll Management

Friday, June 10th, 2011

Some people claim that the micro stakes are unbeatable, which is a complete lie. The micro stakes offer the lowest form of competition available, as long as you’re willing to be patient and avoid being overly-aggressive against calling stations. Okay, it involves a little more than this, but the point of this article is to talk about micro stakes bankroll management.

The biggest problem people have when it comes to low limit bankroll management is playing at stakes where they can’t cover a sufficient amount of buy-ins. For example, a player will deposit $25 into a poker site, then jump into $0.05/$0.10 No-Limit Hold’em. This might seem okay since you’re playing against weaker players, but you also have to consider that $25 is only enough to cover 2-and-a-half buy-ins at these stakes. If you suffer a few bad beats at these limits, you are going to lose your bankroll rather quickly.

So instead of jumping into $0.05/$0.10 NLHE with a $25 bankroll, it’s a much better idea to drop down to $0.01/$0.02. Seeing as how the competition is so easy at these limits, and people are willing to go all-in with 8-6 (off-suit) on a regular basis, you’ll be able to experience success rather quickly. Sure there will be times when you’ll get beat by these crazy hands, but the large majority of the time, you will win lots of money (comparative to stakes).

More importantly, taking a $25 bankroll into $0.01/$0.02 NLHE gives you twelve-and-a-half buy-ins at these stakes. This means that you have plenty of buy-ins to survive bad variance and ultimately make some money. Now playing limits these low isn’t exactly ideal in terms of your overall money goals, but look at it this way: if you make $0.80 in an hour, you’ve made 40 big blinds. And if you consistently do this, you’ll be moving up the limits in no time!