Bankroll Management in Poker

Keeping your finances under control is of vital importance in all aspects of life, and those normally associated with Scratch Cards should note that poker is no different. Once your money is down on the table you must accept that it can go as quickly as it can come.

Never play at a level where you cannot afford to lose. ‘Scared money’, as it is known, can be smelt out by players – if you are playing as if you cannot afford to lose, you will tighten up and your opponent will attack.

Only play when you are prepared. Don’t play after a night out at 3 am and wake up to find you’ve lost a month’s rent. Don’t play when you are tired or are not completely switched on. Poker is about the tiny details, the maths, and the reads. You won’t be able to make your best decisions if you are not focused.

TILT. It is easy to say ‘never go on tilt.’ Never going on tilt is hard, so hard in fact that everyone has gone on tilt at one stage in their poker careers. Cards will not go your way for periods of time, so it is importance to deal with this variance (the ups and downs of poker) by having the right bankroll.

It is generally accepted that for sit n go no limit hold’em, your bankroll should be at least 40 buyins. That is to say, if you are playing $10 games, you should carry a bankroll of at least $400. For cash games, your bankroll should be at least 20 times the full buy-in of the level you want to play e.g. for a $.50/$1 game, where the maximum entry is $100, you should have a bankroll of $2000.


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