10 Common Mistakes Made In Texas Hold'em Poker You Need To Avoid

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10 Common Mistakes Made In Texas Hold'em Poker You Need To Avoid

With millions of new players taking to the online felt during the Coronavirus pandemic, the action is hot at the best online poker sites

In particular, Texas Hold’em has never been so popular and both online poker and live poker are booming.

When playing poker today, there isn’t a single detail you can afford to overlook if you want to succeed. You have to tighten up your poker game if you’re going to stay competitive, keep up with the pros, avoid mistakes and stay ahead of the rest of the field.

It's the small details that distinguish the pros from the players who are just a little talented. Honing your poker strategy will help improve the way you play at the table.

Here we cover 10 common poker mistakes made in Texas Hold'em Poker, so you can avoid them like a pro.

1. Missing Value Bet Opportunities

Missing a value bet is one of the most common poker mistakes made on the felt today.

How often have you checked at the river, planning to call any bet less than ¾ of the pot, and your opponent just checks? Both hands are revealed, and you win the pot.

Sure, you won the pot but how big was it and how big could it have been if you hadn’t missed the value bet?

It’s a bet placed on the river intended to raise the value of a pot that you are most likely to be winning, and will likely be called by your opponent. Well-placed value bets have the potential to rapidly increase your profit.

Missing the value bet too often will make a huge dent in your profit margin. Missing it just once in every five opportunities could reduce it by as much as 25%.

If you think you have a good read on your opponent’s hand, take the risk because not doing so could get expensive.

2. Calling with the Weaker Ace

Here’s a critical Texas Hold'em tip: don’t call down more experienced players with a weak ace. This hand is not worth betting on.

Another common poker mistake, calling with the weaker ace is likely to end in you surrendering your bets to your opponent.

Sure, you might catch another ace by the river but having a top pair with a low or mediocre kicker is not ideal. The chances of this hand being bested are really high.

3. Bluffing the Donk

This happens when someone tries bluffing to outmaneuver a beginner.

Bluffing the ‘donk’ is never a good idea. Don’t waste your well-planned bluffing strategy on someone you can tell is brand new. 

There’s no need to be sophisticated with someone who only has a basic understanding of the game and is unlikely to be able to read the signals you are trying to give off.

This rookie poker mistake is bound to cost you a lot in wasted bets. It’s your job to determine the capabilities and calling range of your opponents, then follow through with your best poker strategy for that specific situation. 

If you want to play poker like a real pro, you can start by not carrying out a complex bluff on a beginner.

4. Overcalling Small Pocket Pairs Pre-flop

One of the biggest poker mistakes is overcalling with small pocket pairs.

Calling large bets for a low-value pair like any from 2/2 to 6/6 is not advised. It’s important to fairly measure your bets, overcalling a mediocre hand will cost you. If you’re lucky, a small pair can become a 3-of-a-kind on the flop. 

It’s a lowkey hand that can sometimes make for stunning victories. But the odds of getting this hand, unfortunately, aren’t high. 

Small pocket pairs work best in cheap-to-enter multi-way pots, where the reward for hitting 3-of-a-kind will be greater than in heads-up situations.

5. Getting Psyched Out by Your Opponents

Everyone knows poker is a psychological game, but the last thing you want is to get psyched out by your opponents. Letting someone get in your head will put you off your game, get distracted and cause you to make bad decisions. It’s important to keep your cool playing poker.

Some professional poker players will sometimes strategically psych out opponents to get a mental edge in the game. They want to make it feel personal, taunting opponents in different ways, including revealing a bluff, aggressive chatting, and anything they can do to tick them off.

We all have our own individual ways of dealing with stress, whether it's meditation, yoga, exercise or simply staring at oneself in the mirror each morning and having a pep talk with yourself. 

Whatever method you use, have such a method and avoid being drawn into confrontation at the poker table, your wallet will thank you for it, even if your ego might get bruised on occasion.

6. Don’t Overplay Aces

While playing Texas Hold’em, we’re all pleased to see an ace in the hole. But just because you have an ace, it’s not automatically a great hand.

Disgrace that ace if you have to.

Depending on the cards on the board, holding an ace can be a great hand or simply a weak one. Just because another ace appears on the flop doesn’t mean your hand is going to be better than your opponents'. 

Remind yourself, two aces are just a pair, lots of hands can beat that.

And if you are dealt pocket aces, don’t think they are unbeatable. They are only the strongest hand before the flop and are vulnerable on many boards. Aces may be the best-starting hand in no-limit Texas Hold’em poker, but they are also the easiest hand to butcher and end up going broke with.


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7. Calling with a Small Flush Draw in a Multi-Way Pot

One of the costliest mistakes is to call with a small flush draw when playing a hand with several players, in what is known as a multi-way pot.

You might think it’ll work but there’s a high chance someone will bet enough on the flop to give you pot odds to hit the flush, which can get you in a lot of trouble versus a bigger flush.

When playing a multi-way pot, there are many ways for your hand to be bested by a hand that’s much stronger and you are almost always behind if you don’t hit the flush you are forlornly hoping for.

8. Showing Your Cards

Although some poker players will strategically show cards to set up a future bluff, it’s an advanced tactic that comes with loads of risk.

A pro can pick up hints about the way you play when showing your cards. In any case, showing your cards is not recommended. Revealing your hand at the end of a round is one of the sloppiest rookie poker mistakes made by amateurs. It sends signals to the table about your style of play you maybe don’t want out there.

It’s best to remain mindful of the observant pros at the table.

9. Committing Yourself

You’re pot committed whenever holding onto a bad hand is a better option than folding. This is determined by pot odds and how they compare to your chances of winning. 

Being pot committed isn’t a favourable position to be in unless you’re certain your poker hand can win. You don’t want to end up committing yourself to bets you can’t afford.

If you’re aware of the size of everyone’s stack, you’re less likely to make any commitments you can’t get out of.

For example, don’t bet too large with a weak holding versus a smaller stack, or you may be forced to call when they move all-in. 

It’s a common poker mistake to not really be aware of the size of opponents' stacks, so pay attention and keep up with what’s going on in the game to avoid taking this basic error.

10. When to Stop the Bluff

Holding onto a bluff for too long can make you go bust.

If you’ve been working on a bluff for a couple of streets already, it’s understandable that you wouldn’t want to let go of all the chips you’ve already been investing into selling it to your opponents.

But knowing when to give up on a bluff is key to keeping your game going past the current round.

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