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Tips for Playing Poker Tournaments

Tips for Playing Poker Tournaments

By opening up your favourite online poker client and going to their tournament lobby, you will instantly recognize the fact that there are so many people who want to play online poker tournaments. Poker tournaments are almost as old as online poker itself and players have been regularly doing this for years.

The good news is that with the online poker sites competing for customers, as a result there are many value added poker tournaments in their schedule with large guaranteed prize pools. It shouldn’t be too difficult beating small buy-in tournaments because you are playing against novice players who don’t have that much poker experience, and thus will be making a lot of mistakes, which means lots of good opportunities to take their money!

With that in mind, here are three strategies to get you started when it comes to playing them:

Tip Number 1: Playing tight early on.

Adopting a tight approach to the game by tightening up your starting hand requirements is a good playing style for a new player who is still learning how to play poker. The same can be said when it comes to playing poker tournaments, whether it’s online or live.

The main reason why is because an overwhelming percentage of the players in the tournament are recreational players who are only having fun and playing any two cards in front of them. Considering the tournament didn’t cost much to enter, they risk very little and, so will be willing to gamble it up as a way to try and build a chip stack as quickly as possible.

So by playing tight early on in the tournament and waiting to make a big hand, you can win big pots and accumulate a sizeable chip stack to go on and hopefully win the tournament. A conservative approach early on in the tournament will also help you to better figure out the opponents you’re up against.

Tip Number 2: Play every tournament that you can.

It’s not realistic to think you can win every poker tournament you enter. With sometimes thousands of players who have entered the tournament, you are required to outlast a lot of players to claim the top prize. So it makes sense to play in as many poker tourneys as one can possibly play. The more tournaments you play the more you can expect to win.

When picking which tournaments to play, the smaller the field size and larger the direct real money prize pool being offered, the more inclined you should be to play it. You can check the poker tournament schedule on the homepage of most poker websites for a list of all upcoming tournaments with guaranteed prize pools.

Tip Number 3: Know when to change gears.

During the later stages of a poker tournament, at some point the field gets dwindled down, and typically the better players will have survived. In some cases some players were incredibly lucky to have reached this stage of the tournament, but generally speaking, that’s what tends to happen.

If you are lucky enough to still have a decent sized stack with very few players still in the mix, make sure to observe the other player’s at the table, so you can know how to play against them when you happen to get in a big confrontation with them. This is bound to happen eventually if you go onto winning the tournament. There will be loose players and tight players who will have survived until this stage of the tournament. Make the proper adjustments against both types of opponents.

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