Take it down

We explain why keeping player notes should be a top priority and a route to profit

At my very first live tournament I remember one old poker dog considering an all-in bet from another young beginner. He looked at the guy for a minute and then declared confidently: ‘You’ve been playing Ace-rag all night,’ and called. Sure enough the lad flipped over A-5 and busted out.

My awe at his powers of recall was matched by a numbing realisation that my memory, little better than a shopping list written on an Etch-a-Sketch, was probably not best suited to this game. And the noise, chip tricks and waitresses competing for my attention obviously weren’t going to help either.

So hoorah for online poker! Distractions like the fridge and internet porn notwithstanding, all you have to focus on are your opponents. Not only that, but every time you spot something interesting – noteworthy, even – you can write it down. And the next time you meet the guy who overplays Ace-rag, you’ll be armed and ready.

Short of winning mountains of cash, there are few things in poker more satisfying than having a sound read on someone. Calling a big bet on the river because you just know the guy is bluffing – or bluffing successfully yourself – gets the adrenaline flowing and has the pleasant side-effect of making you richer.

But to carry off either play consistently well, you need to be able to reason your way to the conclusion that the call or the bluff has a good chance of success. For that you need to know your opponents – and this is why player notes are such an important part of the online game.

Having the edge

As David Sklanksy put it to Al Alvarez in The Biggest Game In Town: ‘If there’s something I know about the game that the other guy doesn’t… then I take his money.’

Winning poker is about maintaining and exploiting an edge over the other players at your table – and that edge is often nothing more than information.

If you’re concentrating harder on the game than the next person, your edge increases. Think of it as a cumulative series of steps – the more you pay attention, the more information you can glean and the bigger your advantage. It’s that simple, especially when you can etch your flashes of perception onto your hard drive forever.

In fact, player notes are such an important part of online poker that you should browse a site’s Notes facility before signing up. Ongame’s sites (PokerRoom.com, Holdempoker.com), for example, have a tagging feature where you can assign labels to various coloured buttons that sit beside opponents’ avatars. These make good quick-reference points.

On PokerStars’ interface, notes for each player at the table are accessed via a drop-down menu embedded in the chat box. Ultimately, of course, it’s a matter of preference, but it’s certainly worth thinking about.

It’s also perhaps worth mentioning that the notes you make are stored on your computer and not on the server, which is something to bear in mind when you buy a new laptop. But you should have no problem copying the relevant file across, and the site’s support should be able to tell you where it is.

Not only do your notes help you with difficult decisions, they force you to concentrate. Observing and analysing the hands you’re not involved in is a great habit to get into. As any poker book will tell you, every hand is a potential goldmine of information.

So what should you be looking for? To start with, concentrate on the fundamentals. The most basic player categories – loose or tight, weak or aggressive – are what you should focus on initially.

How many hands is a player involved in? A raise in front of you means less coming from a loose player. Do they fold easily to raises, do they call, or do they play back? Any of these vital observations could come in handy later on – so you need to keep paying attention. It’s a way to keep you occupied while the deck is running cold, at the very least.

All the while you should also be jotting down anything else that you spot (see Note to self). Showdowns are priceless, especially if you can think back through the betting at each stage of the hand. They provide concrete evidence that a player was chasing against the odds, how much they bet when they’re bluffing, what hands they’re prepared to slow-play… so write it all down.

Weapons and tactics

Remember that note-taking is an ongoing job. Moving tables in a tournament and starting from scratch can be off-putting, especially after you’ve spent the last couple of hours preparing bulging dossiers on your previous opponents, but stick with it. Who knows who you’ll meet again at the final table?

Don’t be afraid to revise your notes, either. Hopefully you’re not playing against robots – you’re looking for trends, and one over-bet does not an overbettor make. Bear in mind that a player who seems to switch from loose to tight play is probably changing gears on purpose, which in turn means he or she is a player worthy of respect. So write it down!

As if that’s not enough, it’s a good idea to review the notes for your opponents during the game. Try and predict how they’re going to play or what cards they have based on your existing information. When something clicks – when your notes tally with your predictions – you have a bona fide read and a new weapon in your arsenal.

Some more wisdom to finish with, this time from Lou Krieger: ‘Most of the money you’ll win at poker comes not from the brilliance of your own play, but from the ineptitude of your opponents.’

By cataloguing and learning from the ineptitude – and conversely the players to be avoided – around you, you’re making money. There’s one more thing to remember, however: always keep an eye on your own game, because your better opponents are going to be keeping notes on you, too.

Pin It

151 thoughts on “Take it down

  1. Pingback: jojobet twitter

  2. Pingback: jojobet twitter

  3. Pingback: jojobet twitter

  4. Pingback: jojobet

  5. Pingback: jojobet

  6. Pingback: lugabet giriş

  7. Pingback: betgross giriş

  8. Pingback: yasam ayavefe

  9. Pingback: yasam ayavefe

  10. Pingback: yasam ayavefe

  11. Pingback: yasam ayavefe

  12. Pingback: yasam ayavefe

  13. Pingback: yasam ayavefe

  14. Pingback: yasam ayavefe techbullion.com

  15. Pingback: yasam ayavefe techbullion.com

  16. Pingback: izmir travesti

  17. Pingback: hd porno izle

  18. Pingback: hd porno izle

  19. Pingback: hd porno izle

  20. Pingback: porno izleme sitesi

  21. Pingback: porno izleme sitesi

  22. Pingback: çatalca escort

  23. Pingback: çekmeköy escort

  24. Pingback: çorum escort

  25. Pingback: datça escort

  26. Pingback: izmir travesti

  27. Pingback: izmir travesti

  28. Pingback: izmir travesti

  29. Pingback: çeşme transfer

  30. Pingback: vip çeşme transfer

  31. Pingback: vip çeşme transfer

  32. Pingback: vip çeşme transfer

  33. Pingback: çeşme transfer

  34. Pingback: bağcılar escort

  35. Pingback: xxlargeseodigi

  36. Pingback: xxlargeseodigi

  37. Pingback: xxlargeseodigi

  38. Pingback: child porn

  39. Pingback: child porn

  40. Pingback: izmir escort

  41. Pingback: izmir escort

  42. Pingback: izmir escort

  43. Pingback: porn

  44. Pingback: porn

  45. Pingback: child porn

  46. Pingback: child porn

  47. Pingback: child porn

  48. Pingback: child porn

  49. Pingback: child porn

  50. Pingback: A片

  51. Pingback: pornoizle}

  52. Pingback: bahis siteleri

  53. Pingback: hydroxychloroquine 200mg 60 tablets

  54. Pingback: effects of aurogra on women

  55. Pingback: cialis 20mg price uk

  56. Pingback: erythromycin with ethanol 2 % topical solution

  57. Pingback: hydroxychloroquine cost at walmart

  58. Pingback: erectile pills

  59. Pingback: hydroxychloroquine coronavirus successes

  60. Pingback: generic for viagra or cialis

  61. Pingback: tadalafil without doctors prescription net

  62. Pingback: stromectol at walgreens

  63. Pingback: buy viagra

  64. Pingback: erection medicines

  65. Pingback: cialis online

  66. Pingback: buy plaquenil in india

  67. Pingback: hydroxychloroquine coronavirus trial results

  68. Pingback: what is the generic for cialis

  69. Pingback: which is more effective vidalista or viagra

  70. Pingback: cialis for women reviews

  71. Pingback: generic chloroquine

  72. Pingback: walmart vidalista prices without insurance

  73. Pingback: tamoxifen citrate 20

  74. Pingback: viagra coupon cvs

  75. Pingback: chewable viagra pills

  76. Pingback: cvs pharmacy delivery service

  77. Pingback: amstyles.com

  78. Pingback: new hydroxychloroquine study

  79. Pingback: Buy pfizer viagra in canada

  80. Pingback: what if viagra doesnt work

  81. Pingback: what do lesbians call viagra? batteries

  82. Pingback: buy cialis online without script

  83. Pingback: viagra

  84. Pingback: cialis

  85. Pingback: sildenafil 100mg price

  86. Pingback: viagra for sale

  87. Pingback: buy cialis

  88. Pingback: buszcentrum.com

  89. Pingback: cialis no prescription

  90. Pingback: viagra

  91. Pingback: cialis price

  92. Pingback: online cialis

  93. Pingback: viagra pills

  94. Pingback: viagra cheap

  95. Pingback: viagra cheap

  96. Pingback: illegal buy viagra online

  97. Pingback: generic viagra to buy

  98. Pingback: can you buy viagra online in uk

  99. Pingback: buy viagra online cheap no prescription

  100. Pingback: viagra over counter walmart

  101. Pingback: buy viagra today

  102. Pingback: buy viagra online cheap

  103. Pingback: buy viagra no prescription required

  104. Pingback: buy cialis online

  105. Pingback: sildenafil citrate 100mg prices walmart

  106. Pingback: buy real viagra online

  107. Pingback: generic cialis canada

  108. Pingback: canadian viagra

  109. Pingback: how to buy viagra online

  110. Pingback: viagra online

  111. Pingback: generic viagra reviews

  112. Pingback: canadian pharmacy viagra

  113. Pingback: viagra online canada

  114. Pingback: online viagra prescription

  115. Pingback: casino slot games

  116. Pingback: best online casino for money

  117. Pingback: slot machine games

  118. Pingback: best online casino match deposits

  119. Pingback: LuckyCreek

  120. Pingback: are online casinos legal in california

  121. Pingback: buy cialis

  122. Pingback: casino gambling new york

  123. Pingback: big cash online casino

  124. Pingback: legitimate online slots for money

  125. Pingback: buy cialis

  126. Pingback: new cialis

  127. Pingback: cialis 5 mg

  128. Pingback: cialis internet

  129. Pingback: viagra prescription

  130. Pingback: cash advance online

  131. Pingback: loans for bad credit

  132. Pingback: loans for bad credit

  133. Pingback: online casino games

  134. Pingback: real casino online

  135. Pingback: viagra online usa

  136. Pingback: casino slots gambling

  137. Pingback: free slots online

  138. Pingback: vardenafil 20mg

  139. Pingback: vardenafil price

  140. Pingback: levitra vardenafil

  141. Pingback: Cialis in usa

  142. Pingback: canadian pharmacy

  143. Pingback: cialis generic

  144. Pingback: ed meds online without doctor prescription

  145. Pingback: buy erection pills

  146. Pingback: non prescription ed pills

  147. Pingback: viagra 100mg

  148. Pingback: when will generic cialis be available

  149. Pingback: cialis professional

  150. Pingback: cialis india

  151. Pingback: viagra coupon cvs

Leave a Reply