Making the transition from live to online poker
Whether you play a regular social game of poker with friends or occasionally head down to the casino, you may be wondering how to take your poker to the next level.
Playing online poker will give you a deeper understanding of the game. This guide will help you to make a smooth transition to the online poker world.
Online poker is a different environment
You might enjoy getting a group of friends together at home to play poker. Or, you might prefer to play at a casino with the main aim of having a good time and flashing the cash.
Online poker is a different environment again, and those who play online tend to be all about the game itself. If you’re looking to improve your own game quickly, online poker could well be for you.
Online poker can be tougher, but it’s also a good way to practice, using lower bets and getting your hours in. To make the transition easier, make sure you have a solid grasp of the game and the basic strategies.
Online tutorials, forums and playing against a computer are all great ways to give you the fundamentals you’ll need to make the transition.
YOU’LL NEED TO MANAGE YOUR BANKROLL
If you want to avoid a very short online poker career, you’ll need to think about careful bankroll management – how you manage the money in your account so you always have funds available.
Your bankroll isn’t the same thing as the total in your online account; it’s what you’re prepared (and can sensibly afford) to lose. Everyone has their own limits, but a good rule is to never deposit more money at a site than you can afford to lose.
It’s worth remembering that many online poker sites will offer sign up bonuses when you make your first deposit, which can give you a valuable boost. Generally, there will be a wager requirement, which means you can’t withdraw the bonus money until you’ve played a minimum number of times.
A Skrill wallet allows you to make deposits instantly and manage your cash at the click of a button. With payments taken care of you’re free to focus on your game.
ONLINE POKER IS FASTER
One very noticeable difference between live and online poker is the speed of the game. Cards are dealt instantly, pots are transferred without any mistakes and the hands are played out in a snap.
This means you don’t have to wait around for hours to get your poker fix. You can play more online games in a week than you might play live in a year.
However, you may find it hard to keep up with the speed at first. It’s a good idea to play against computer bots to adjust to this new style of play and help you keep up with the pace.
ONLINE POKER IS MORE AGGRESSIVE
The most popular form of online poker is six-max no limit Hold ‘em. This means that the total number of people will always be six, with no betting limit.
Live poker will often be full ring poker, which can have up to nine players.
When playing online, you’ll be paying a blind every three hands, meaning you can’t afford to wait for your pocket aces or kings. You’ll need to adjust to more aggressive play.
The upside of this is that there’s more dead money on the table from players who were knocked out in the earlier hands.
On top of that, virtually all successful, high-stakes poker players are more aggressive than your average player, so learning this style of play will drastically improve your game.
HANDS RANGE MORE ONLINE
As you have a limit of six players, all forced to play aggressively, the hands you’ll come up against will range much more.
At a table of nine, it’s a sound strategy to fold any bad cards pre-flop. This strategy won’t work for a table of six.
Online poker is all about your decision-making post-flop, so don’t be afraid to go in when you have suited connectors from seven upwards, premium cards and broadway cards.
Although post-flop play involves making riskier, tougher decisions, remember all other players must do the same. If you learn to play well post-flop, there’s a lot of money to be won in online poker.
If you’re looking to play more poker at a higher level without having to arrange card games or leave the house, you should consider transitioning to online poker.
There are key differences in the pace, the environment and the style of play, but managing your money sensibly and putting in the time can help you to quickly get your game to a high standard in the comfort of your own home.