In Poker, Should You Play Only the Best Hands?

More often than not, the decision of whether or not to play a hand comes down to personal style. Read on for all the details on whether you should only play your best hands.

Poker strategies vary amongst players, and you’ll find more often than not, the decision of whether or not to play a hand comes down to personal style. There are pros and cons to playing only your best hands, and you can either aim for a style that allows for these pros and cons, or let it naturally develop as you progress through various games.

It is, of course, important to practise these strategies to improve and get better. The more you play, the easier it will be for you to be able to develop your own strategy and approach to each game. If you do want to improve, try playing at GGPoker where you can try your hand against good players in fantastic games.

Read on for all the details on whether you should only play your best hands.

Poker styles come down to two main elements: tight vs loose and passive vs aggressive playing. For the sake of full information, tight vs loose comes down mainly to what hands the player is willing to play, and passive vs aggressive players come down to what risks they are willing to risk. Understanding all four elements determine you and your opponent’s poker style but tight versus loose playing will most inform which hands you bet.

Arguments For No

Tight players will try to avoid playing too many hands. To their opponents, this can come off as cowardice and a lack of confidence. They will only play the best hands and simply fold on anything else.

A tight passive player is definitely the most inept of the bunch; they are quick to bluff and fold to scary cards like aces. They can be taken advantage of by emitting the tiniest amount of confidence in the cards you have when they are looking unsure.

However, a tight passive player can play the long game, and keep folding and abandoning hands they don’t like until they have one that they do like. If they are playing, all the other players at the table will know they have no chance and simply fold.

On the other end, the tight aggressive players can be the most effective players in poker. They are also very selective with what they play but will play their cards strongly and will be high if they feel confident enough.

It is a strong approach to the game that is the middle ground between the four elements of the styles and can be seen regularly amongst the pros like Twitch players. Players of this style are nicknamed “sharks” and are often not clashed with. If you can nail down the characteristics of a tight aggressive player, playing few but strong, you can end up winning a lot of pots.

Arguments For Yes

There are some merits to playing more loosely. Although loose passive players don’t make for the best players, with a rather blasé approach that will make them call, call, call just to see what the flop was, loose aggressive players can give method and madness, and trying to distinguish the two can be difficult for your opponents.

The approach of raising and re-raising over various hands, betting on flops, and giving equal levels of confidence on various hands can look like a madman throwing money away like it’s diseased. However, this can be a cover for a player who is trying to hide their worst hands, so you will never really know if the hand they have is great or not, leading to a lot of flops on your end. What the loose aggressive player is doing is actually applying pressure with their chips.

So, what approach should you go for? That’s up to you. Beginners would be more financially sound, perhaps, going with the tight aggressive approach, or the tight passive approach until they gain some experience. But with experience comes settling into your own style and you will soon establish what is working for you and what isn’t.

 

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