Playing Above Your Limit

George | June 5, 2008

One of the most made mistakes inexperienced online poker players make is playing above their limit. Next to that, the vast majority of players don’t implement any kind of bankroll management, so they rather jeopardize their entire bankroll.

Because of this you see that many players re-deposit, while it’s so much better to step down if you’re serious at becoming better. I speak out of experience, but recently began with basic bankroll management and I can say it really helps me a lot overall. Let me explain what happened prior to this.

I have played a lot of poker for a long time, initially freerolls, but I made the move to playing poker for real money within a year after I started playing. Loosing becomes a much bigger factor when playing poker for money, but it happens. Every online poker player will have periods that the odds are against them, these periods are called down swings. It’s hard, it’s frustrating and can cost you a lot of your money, specially when you’re not managing your bankroll. Hardest of all is definitely to avoid getting on tilt when you constantly keep loosing when having pot odds.

To overcome down swings you should, no… you must do proper bankroll management! This way you can take a loss two, or even more. The best part, you can play over “the long haul”, because that’s what matters for getting positive odds in poker. Sure you will see yourself being sucked out occasionally, but over a longer period of time the odds change in your favor when playing the right hands.

With bankroll management you play in levels of limits-heights dependent to your bankroll. Once you drop below a certain amount of money, you will also have to move down in limits. For instance, if you loose a 95% winning hand when playing $5/10, but still have $99,000 left, you won’t care about it and playing poker becomes a lot less stressful.

So, knowing all this might mean you have to step down a few levels from where you’re playing online poker now, but the benefits of good bankroll management are simple, you won’t go broke! Trust me, your bankroll will grow, thus you will move up soon enough, if you win consequently. Below you will find a few guidelines, I’d say hit the printer friendly button (printer icon) stick it to your wall next to your monitor.

No Limit Texas Hold’em
Blinds Bankroll
$0.05/$0.10 $200
$0.10/$0.20 $400
$0.25/$0.50 $1,000
$0.50/$1 $2,000
$1/$2 $4,000
$2/$4 $8,000
$5/$10 $20,000
$10$/20 $40,000
$25/$50 $100,000
$50/$100 $200,000
Limit Texas Hold’em
Blinds Bankroll
$0.05/$0.10 $30
$0.10/$0.20 $60
$0.25/$0.50 $150
$0.50/$1 $300
$1/$2 $600
$2/$4 $1,200
$5/$10 $3,000
$10$/20 $6,000
$25/$50 $15,000
$50/$100 $30,000
Sit ‘n Gos
Buy-ins Bankroll
$1+$0.10 $44
$2+$0.20 $88
$5+$0.50 $220
$10+$1 $440
$20+$2 $880
$30+$3 $1,320
$50+$5 $2,200
$100+$10 $4,400
$200+$20 $8,800
$500+$50 $22,000