Poker is a card game that requires skill and psychology. It’s a game where there is an element of chance but once betting is introduced it becomes a game of weighted chances. Just like in life, not having the best starting hand is no reason to surrender. The key to making money in poker is to maximise your chances as much as possible.
The best way to do this is to bet aggressively when you have a premium opening hand such as a pair of kings, queens or ace’s. On the other hand, you should check when you have a weaker opening hand such as a low pair or suited connectors. By varying your tactics you will make it harder for opponents to put you on a specific hand and they will be forced to pay more for their draws.
Another great tactic is to use your down time between hands to study your opponents and learn their tells. Tells are unconscious habits a player displays that reveal information about their hand. This can be anything from eye movements to idiosyncrasies in their betting behavior. For example, if a player frequently calls and then unexpectedly raises it could be a tell that they are holding an exceptional hand.
Too many players fall into the trap of playing too safe. By always calling, they will never get paid off on their strong value hands and their bluffs will rarely work. In addition, they will miss out on opportunities where a moderate risk can yield a big reward.