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4 Basic Poker Strategies to Always Keep in Mind

Published on February 27, 2019, 12:13 pm

by Jeff Grant Twitter account Jeff Grant LinkedIn account

4 Basic poker strategies
4 basic poker strategies (loose-passive, loose-aggressive, tight-passive, tight aggressive)

Winning a poker game is all about applying the correct logic and strategy, you also need to be consistent with your style of play so as to become better with it over time. For gamers, there are various proven techniques that can be used to stay ahead of other players at the casino. Some of these winning poker strategies include the following:

I) The Rock

Also known as tight-passive style of play, here the contestant plays on very few cards and rarely bets or raises unless they have a very strong hand that’s sure to turn the game in their favor.

These gamers usually don’t play many pots and would only call pre-flop once they identify a hand which they like. Their strategy is to play so tight that everyone else on the table folds and becomes easier to read.

For the best outcome, tight passive strategy should only be used selectively depending on the opponents’ technique. This will prevent them from becoming overaggressive and looking for weak spots in your withdrawn style of play that can be exploited for a win.

Additionally, in case you successfully make a hand but there are still some draws on the table that can challenge you when raised, try as much as possible to make it unprofitable for the other players to hit their draws. If your opponents call in frequently then they stand a greater risk of losing their money to you. Therefore, only seek to play when you have the correct price and try to impel your opponents to pay more, as compared to your set price for the game.

One of the key benefits of The Rock strategy is that there’s a limitation on the amount of good starting hands, which significantly reduces your chances of losing. Additionally, if your poker table is full of aggressive players, then it’s a good technique since other contestants will do all the betting and bluffing as you get action without betting yourself. This way you can make even the most attentive players fold as you raise your winning card.

II) Calling Station

The calling-station poker strategy is also known as loose-passive. It’s popular among beginners who are cautious of frequent betting and think that their opponents can fold at any time. However, they may still call the bets whenever possible since they can luckily hit on the run, or even catch an opponent who’s only bluffing.

Generally, Call Station players prefer limping into many different pots during the game, and will call raises only to see a flop, but still stay in hand whenever they make a successful hit. They usually don’t get aggressive in the game and will only follow opportunities when they arise, their approach is to stand-by and watch as other players do all the risking but only move in when there’s a higher chance of landing a winning card.

Sometimes, beginners and even seasoned players can make the mistake of calling-in frequently, which exposes their style of play to opponents and makes them very easy targets. However, by acting as a Call Station you can avoid getting into this trap, since other players won’t find it simple to bluff you fearing that it may ultimately turn over on them. Moreover, when you pick up a good hand as a loose-passive player, try as much to bet for value and get as higher profits as possible from your opponents.


TAG (tight / aggressive) poker players
TAG (tight / aggressive) poker players

The TAG or tight-aggressive player is one who plays few hands and regularly bets or raises, but very rarely makes any calls. They also tend to be selective and will only play their best starting hands in most games. These players are also generally patient and won’t raise until they have the best striking opportunities, though this doesn’t mean they are afraid of betting but are rather just cautious.

In poker, TAG players are often referred to as sharks since this technique is very effective in winning games, no matter the gaming variation or betting model that’s in place. Usually, skilled players will avoid competing directly with a tight-aggressive person, and would rather choose to clash with other softer targets that can fold easily under pressure.

The basic concept of this strategy is that you play very minimal hands, but do so aggressively. It’s highly recommended to take an aggressive stance when playing poker, since this can help change close spots into more favorable ones. Constantly forcing other players to react to your moves will ultimately make them do certain errors which you can take advantage of to win the game. However, you still need to be careful not to go overboard with TAG, since the opponents can catch you in your steps while trying to play aggressive and deal a fatal card that may take you out of the game immediately.

IV) LAG Play

This gaming strategy is also known as loose aggressive, and is characterized by players who deal many hands while also frequently betting and raising, but very rarely call any bets. However, loose-aggressive is a very high stake strategy that should preferably be used only by the experienced players. These individuals are usually willing to raise and fire more cards than their regular portion of continuation bets, and are also alert enough to pounce on any lapses or weakness from their opponents.

Typically, LAG players wait until other contestants reveal their starting hand cards and then play them aggressively, often by coming out to bet or raise. Some loose aggressive poker players will only play with a pair of cards dealt to them by the house, singly relying on their aggressive style to outwit opponents once the final community cards are revealed.

Unlike other strategies that can sometimes be read by other players, loose aggressive is very difficult to decipher since the individual usually plays a diverse range of hands, and may even bet on several flops throughout the game.

To conclude, there are various poker strategies that you can use to outwit your opponents, but it’s always recommended to research on them properly so as to know which particular technique will work best for you.


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