Contact us


Playing Too Many Hands

Causes and Remedies

We have discussed in Part I of overly loose hand selection, we will further discuss about poker the nature and cost of this obvious but serious problems.

What Happens in Too-Loose Play?

Why do many players, some very good ones, play hands with a negative expectation? Shouldn't better than average players know that this is a costly practice? Most of them play it undoubtedly, but act to their knowledge. Though my ideas about why they do this are a speculation, I think the remedy involves one or more of these causes.

•  Players overrate their skill and abilities : Most players, after possessing an average skill, start thinking themselves as they are playing at an expert level. As a result, just heard that the best players can get away with playing more hands, they think they can also do the game. Their overrating their skill and abilities may have a chance factor in poker. Because players win despite inconsistent play, some inaccurately combine their results with the play. They draw to some incorrect conclusion while others do not get result from a lack of knowledge of the fluctuations to be expected in poker. In certain situations, it has a psychological calculation which is far away from this essay. Many people automatically boost their pride. Misleading others about their skills and abilities in poker offers this boost.

•  They go deceitfully "on tilt": As my essays on the concepts of "tilt" elaborate, I define tilt as the effects of emotional reactions on one's play. Many players spend lot of time on tilt without even analyzing it. When their misplays are unobjectionable a call here, an extra hand played there they are improbably to recognize them as the result of being on tilt.

But when you make a mistake when you know better, that's tilt. It can be small instance of tilt, but it is emotion which affects the play of a hand. Your mind may say to do one thing at times but something else makes you do the other thing at other times. That "something" is an emotional reaction, can be anything errorneous belief irritation, anger, boredom or any such other feeling which can strongly (maybe incorrectly) affect your actions. To play a hand which have to be folded, when you know better, is meekly a moment of tilt.

•  They are under an impression that any two cards can win : This is true only in short term and but false in the long term. This logic that any two cards can win tends to be strong in hold'em which affects few good players. While they may pay lip service to the significance of selecting the correct hands to play, on other level, they do not really feel it is of much importance to play some weak hands, as the flop changes things so much. This impression is used as a rationalization which encourages going on tilt.

•  Midway players have gaps in their knowledge : Players at a "midway" level, by definition, lack some knowledge about the game. In certain situation, this is been seen in their understanding of the play of starting hands. Might be these players learn other areas of the game before analyzing their pre-flop play. I would recommend to the starting player that the main area to consider in learning the hold'em (or any other form of poker) is the play of starting hands, some of them learn instead by indirect ways.

•  Few good players are "impulsive" players : There are players who have become extremely skilled at poker without reading books or practicing of any kind. They in fact have a "feel" for the game and have learned by possessing poker experience, perhaps have jump onto the winning strategy for a specific game, like hold'em. While they are great players, their lack of learning (reading, analysis, calculations, studying, etc) means they also have some weak areas in their knowledge. Many times they will have good feeling of what hands to be played, but their play would be incorrect and inexact, tending to undervalue some hands while overvaluing other hands. Such a player, for instance may undervalue with the hand like

in un-raised multi-way pots, while overvalue with hand like

(offsuit) in the same case.

•  Some skilled players do not play seriously : There are few players in this category for a very simple reason. In order to become a good player you have to play seriously all throughout the learning process. Therefore, someone in this category would have to have been a serious player, and then, for some reason stopped playing seriously. The numbers of people, who play poker this does actually occur, but occur occasionally. (Remember that some good players may try to encourage themselves and others around them that they are not playing seriously, as a way to rationalize going on tilt. This is a different prodigy.)

Continue Here: Are There Remedies?

©copyright 2005-06, all Rights Reserved, www.poker.tj