Bluffing In Poker

Tue, 28 Oct 2008 22:13

Bluffing in Poker

The pros and cons of bluffing.


As a poker strategy, bluffing should be considered as something that has to be done because it's actually good for you, just like eating your green, leafy veggies. Some experts would say that bluffing is actually the coolest or most sophisticated maneuver in the game of poker. The act of bluffing is exhilarating, daring, and very brave. Bluffing can pump up your adrenaline levels more than other poker strategies. The feeling that you get when you bluff is not that different from riding a roller-coaster, that kind where you start "praying for dear life" when you reach the highest point of the ride.

Things to keep in mind when bluffing in poker

If you've never been caught bluffing, then chances are, you don't really bluff that often. Ideally, most people think that to bluff is to actually get away with it. In the real world, however, this is not always the case. It's actually good for you if you get caught bluffing every now and then. This is especially true if you do have the cards to back up your bluff.

Bluffing too often, however, entails certain dangers. If you're obsessed with getting back all that you've lost during previous poker games, you may be compelled to bluff excessively. And if you don't win despite your efforts, you might get so frustrated that you lose your focus. Before you bluff or play poker, you should keep in mind that this game is a gambling game -- in the end, someone has to lose.

To use this poker strategy effectively, you have to look at bluffing as something you need to do to increase your chances of winning the pot. Plus, the excitement derived from bluffing is definitely something that'll keep your blood pumping. With this kind of mindset, you'll be able to see each poker game as an opportunity to win more and not as a hopeless situation.

The effect of the pot size on your bluffing strategies

According to the books, it is more difficult to force players to concede when the pot is large than if the pot is just medium-sized or small. A lot of excellent players would opt to bluff in the latter stages of the game when the pot money is high, than on the flop stage when the money on the pot is not yet substantial. The following are a few reasons some prefer to bluff during the later stages of a poker game:

# Opponents would expect you to go for loose pots during the flop, and they would therefore not accord you with respect.

# When you go for too many pots, your table reputation is ruined. It would be more difficult for you to win with your bluff acts later on.

# While the win-loss ratio could be less in giant pots, the rewards could be larger. It means that in certain instances when you bluff, you just have to win a percentage for you to actually earn. It all boils down to how much is in the pot.

Whatever the case, be conscious of the pot odds during a bluff act. This is especially true when someone bets on you at the river and your hand is good but not invincible.