How To Become an Expert Poker Bluffer
Written by Phoebe
Published date · Feb. 4, 2021 | Last Updated · July 4, 2022 | Read Time: 4 mins
Poker is a popular live casino game. If you want to win the pot in poker, you need to learn how to become an expert poker bluffer. Bluffing is a popular tactic in the game. It involves placing a bet even though a player’s hand is fairly weak in order to deceive your opponents. The aim of a bluff is simple – you make other players believe that your hand is strong so that your opponent folds and you win the pot! You can make a bluff at any point during a game of poker. You will hear about two kind of bluffs – the bluff and the semi-bluff. Technically, any bluff is a semi-bluff until you reach the river because your hand could change at any point in the game. The only exceptions to this are pure bluffs. A pure bluff is a bet made when the player is certain that their hand has no chance of becoming strong. Semi-bluffs are always made after the flop or turn when a player’s hand holds low value in the draw but could potentially become strong with the luck of the right card. Another type of semi-bluff are continuation bets. This tactic involves players telling the table that their hand is good pre-flop and then again after the flop. Players use this tactic because it is persuasive and encourages their opponents to fold. To put it simply, you should think of bluffing as pretending that your poor hand is great!
When To Bluff?
Bluffing is a very useful tactic in live lobbies. You will never find a texas hold’em player who doesn’t do it! If you don’t bluff, your opponents will soon realise. This means that opponents will know how to read you. Bluffing is a very common tactic in live casino lobbies. Without bluffing, a high bet always means a strong hand which will make your opponents wary. When players are wary, the pot shrinks in size. Poker players bluff so that they are harder to read.
It’s all part of having an effective table image. In a classic poker game, bluffing is a way to turn a bad hand into a good hand. Perhaps even an ace high! It increases your chances of winning the pot. If you can bet the least amount of money for your opponents to fold, you have made a successful bluff. Bluffing will leave you equally as successful in online poker games and live poker games. Common hands that poker players bluff with are flush draws and open-ended straight draws. Good players find a bluffing strategy that works well for them. There is little risk involved with bluffing if you do it right. One kind of player that may catch you out is a calling station. You need to be careful of these! Calling stations are players who are almost impossible to bluff and will call you at the river.
How To Read a Bluff
When you are the one bluffing, this tactic can be great! But, it’s not so good when your opponents may be the one raising bluffs. To avoid losing the the bluffs of your opponents, you will need to know how to spot bluffs. Luckily, bluffing can be quite easy to spot if you are an experienced player. Good players will know what to look out for in their opponents. There are many giveaways that are easy to notice in both online poker and live poker. If you’re lucky, you will be playing with amateurs- they tend to give away bluffs very easily! You can learn to know if your opponents are bluffing by learning tells. Tells are physical changes that signify whether your opponent is bluffing or really does have a good hand.
Knowing tells are the best way to decide if a bluff is raised by your opponent. A player’s tells are always unique to them and often depend on their table image. If you play with the same opponents regularly, you will be able to learn their individual tells. However, if you are new to poker or don’t know your opponents that well, there are some common tells that you should look out for in a poker game. If your opponent acts quickly, they probably have a weak hand. If their hand was strong, they would take more time to decide what to do. Timing tells can be noticed in bluffs on the river and on the flop. You can spot this tell easy when you are playing online poker. Another tell that is easy for any good players to spot is false bravado. This is when an opponent gets a sudden confidence boost and starts to brag, usually during hand. If their hand was really strong, they would be more subtle about it. If you’re playing poker online, false bravado could be spotted in the chat. In a live poker game it is easy spot if someone suddenly gets a huge ego!
Verdict on Bluffing
If you learn to use successful bluffs and semi bluffs, you will have a higher chance of winning the pot in the long run. This is a tactic that can turn a weak hand into a strong hand. Bluffing could even leave you with an ace high! What poker player doesn’t dream of that? Knowing how to spot your opponents bluffs is just as important as using them yourself. When you spot a bluff, you can make an opponent call knowing that your chances of winning are fairly high. You can spot bluffs easily. Just look at your opponents body language. Whether you like the glamorous surroundings of live poker in a casino or like to dabble in online poker games, bluffing is a tactic that every poker player needs to know. No texas hold’em games go without it. After all, who doesn’t want to make money in the casino?