One day I got talking to a friend of mine about how to win at poker. He liked the sound of Holdem and saw that I was earning a decent hourly rate at the tables. He wanted in.
I gave him some detailed instructions and told him to read "Hold'em for Advanced Players" by David Sklanky and Mason Malmuth. We set up an account for him and he played for a few hours under my instruction before heading home.
A few weeks passed without word from my poker online review apprentice so I decided to give him a call. He told me that he had lost $500, found the whole experience thoroughly distressing and that his poker playing days were well and truly over.
What my friend had failed to appreciate is that just like any tradesperson, if you wish to succeed, you must first complete your apprenticeship. Otherwise, you will quickly go broke! So I have decided to write some more explicit instructions on how to go from not knowing how to play to earning a good hourly rate playing Texas Hold'em Poker online. A recipe for success!
The first step is to read "Texas Hold'em for Advanced Players" by David Sklanky and Mason Malmuth or "Low limit Hold'em" by Lee Jones. You should these books to assist you in how to tackle all four betting rounds. However, you should write your own summary on how to play betting round one. That is, which cards you would call and raise with from different positions on the board with different numbers of callers and raisers before you, which cards you should re-raise with etc. I would suggest that you play a bit tighter than suggested in the books. For instance, if you are first in from early position I would generally raise with 88 and better and fold with 77 and worse. I would not call from this position with any worse than QJs.
You should play on the free money tables while you are reading to help you become comfortable with the mechanics of the game. Now, when you feel like you are ready, you should start to play on a low limit table. I started on the $0.50 $1 tables. By making an initial deposit of $500 I qualified for a $100 first deposit bonus. This gave me a bit of a buffer while I developed my game. However, it is critical to ensure that you are quite well developed before taking this step. This is because you have to play quite a lot of hands in a relatively short period of time to earn this bonus. If you are not yet ready you will lose a $100 and more in the process.
I told myself that I could not move up to the $1 $2 tables until I had won $200 on the $0.50 $1 tables (excluding best poker bonuses). Then on the $1 $2 tables I had to win $400 before moving up to the $2 $4 tables and so on. Now I am making $40 per hour on the $15 $30 tables. This is important. As you move up the limits your average opponent improves a little and you need to prove yourself before moving up. Keep in mind that the variance is Texas Hold'em is very high and the best, most disciplined player will lose substantial amounts in the short term. It is generally accepted that if you are winning 2-3 big bets per 100 hands after 10,000 hands at a particular limit then you should move up to the next limit.
If you have any questions as to the correct play in a given situation in any of the betting rounds you can simply ask the question on the forum at this site and we will assist you as quickly as we can.
At the end of the day Texas Hold'em is just like anything else in life. The more you put in the more you will get out. However, by simply following the instructions above, just about anyone can turn themselves into a Texas Hold'em money making machine! The principles discussed in this article are applicable to limit, pot limit and no limit games.