Table Selection Article

One of the most underrated poker skills is the ability to select the game most suited for a player's skill-level.

With the possibilities offered by modern online poker rooms, game selection should be one of the most basic concepts every poker player should follow to the letter. Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately for some) few players bother to do any kind of table selection at all, despite the limitless possibilities offered.

Just think about it: whenever you log on to your favorite online poker room and you decide to have a short ring-game session, what do you do? Do you let the software locate a seat for you at a table and start playing right away, where ever you may find yourself? That's what most people do. Did you know that the software allows you to open a table and watch the action there for as long as you want to? You can just hang around there unseen and unheard, and whenever a seat frees up, sit down there and play? Heck you can make reads on players for free and if you're really careful, and you pay attention to details, you can even choose to have position on certain players.

Why most people choose to ignore this huge advantage online poker offers over the real live version, beats me. I suppose it's also a question of of not having enough time or patience to hang around and read tables before joining, which would make sense since those two are the very factors most players can blame for being stuck in a perpetual fish status, too.

Poker in general, and Texas Holdem in particular is a kind of game where you will never achieve anything without patience, discipline, self control and lots and lots of learning. If you haven't got the time or the patience to learn to play properly, best thing for you would be to stay away from the poker table.

Anyway, bottom line is, prepare well for the game and do not miss possibilities for an edge, no matter how small they may be. Securing small edges in and out of actual play is how good poker players make a lot of money. While you may think that signing up to rakeback may be insignificant and that table selection is also something you may safely ignore, these guys don't. Trust me, they hold on to every little thread of an edge, and that is partly the reason they walk away winners at the end of the day.

In live poker, table selection is an altogether different matter. There are many players who do not play poker for a living, yet they're pretty successful at it. Obviously, since poker is not the center of their universe, they often live in places where finding enough poker tables to consider table selection at all, is a problem.

A professional will go through as much trouble as it takes to find himself the right kind of game and right kind of table. For that, he won't shy away from looking around on a global level if he has to.

Whenever you're on the lookout for games and tables you could potentially make a living off of, first thing you have to consider is the poker variant you want to play in. Texas Holdem presents a bigger short term luck-induced variation, which apparently gives rookies a fair fighting chance against sharks. In the same time, Holdem is the toughest to beat in the long-run. Being a game of small edges, it'll take an awful lot of work, focus and discipline to beat. Omaha Hi-Lo and 7-Card Stud on the other hand, are games of huge edges. In these games rookies won't ever stand a chance against a person who knows what he's doing.

Next thing you have to consider is the location you play at. In Vegas, there are a whole bunch of high stakes games, but because the rake is taken as a percentage of the pot, these games tend to be pretty tight.

In LA, there are loads of mid-stakes games, and there is time collection, so these games are much looser.

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