Poker bluffing is a very important aspect of the game of poker.
In basic terms bluffing in poker is when a player fakes a move and also fakes his face against his desired or real motives, luring his opponents to act in a desired way.
To be successful in poker bluffing, the bluffer must know the thoughts of the other players so as to create a game plan for winning.
The understanding and awareness of certain factors are very important in poker bluffing.
Some of which are the types of poker players at the table, the number of the opponents on the table, the ability of the bluffer to read the plays of his opponents, the cards on the board post-flop, the image already created by the bluffer for himself at the table, the size of the pot already on the table and his position in the hand.
Top 10 Poker Bluffing Tips
So there are many tips and how to guide on how to master the art of poker bluffing. Here is my very own top 10 of different ways to bluff in poker. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did writing it.
Winning with poker bluffing requires you to not play every hand, and you should always reserve your bluffing for the moments of better chances of winning.
They cannot stand to wait for the next hand and play anyway, leading to loss of money to them.
However, it will eventually be discovered by people if you never put any money on the table without having four of a kind first, leading to smaller pots on your winning hands because your opponents will definitely fold.
You should always bluff a maximum of 2 players at a time if you want to be successful at poker bluffing.
With many active players at the poker table, you are not likely to scare more than 2 away.
Going against this rule causes one of the unmoved players to call your bluff if he has a really good hand.
In most cases, pots with more than 2 players are not profitable for bluffing because the more the opponents you are betting into, the less willing a player would be to call.
You should not bluff when playing against bad or newbie players, as these people frequently call bets regardless of the strength of their hand.
They do this because they still don’t know what the game is all about, and are thus happy to call down bets with mediocre hands.
Inexperienced or bad players do not have the ability to fold, while a good player first tries to understand the strength represented by you.
This rule should be followed even if you feel you have a stronger hand.
Your bluffing should always be based on the pot odds, which means you should always display the attitude of a person with a winning hand each time you bluff.
In most cases, a player anticipates folding of a minimum of one hand when he bluffs.
But, you will be exposed if your bluff fails because there is no fold.
A player is not likely to fold if there is more money in the pot because he has more to gain by playing while your bluff will fold more hands with a small pot.
Therefore, a bluff should not be wasted on a large pot.
Bluffing is a good strategy which can be done when you actually hold aces full of kings.
It could even be done if you had low bets and a good hand, as that is a tactic which engages your opponents, forcing them to add to the pot for you to end up with a bigger pot when the hope of winning is lost.
You should also pay attention to the opponents who have folded already, because a player who is out of a hand tends to register more emotion on his face.
If a person folds an eight, it is easier for you to know before two eights are on the board.
In addition, if you notice that a player is upset, there are more chances of you being able to bluff the remaining opponents in the hand and take the pot.
Though bluffing is a common poker strategy, a long time is needed to really be good at it.
You should know when to bluff, making it a strategy that should be launched by experienced players.
Most inexperienced players think that to really become a winning poker player, they need to bluff.
This is not true, because it is possible to be a winning poker player without even bluffing once.
Thus, your bluffs should be limited as much as possible.
They are to be used only in situations where you are sure your opponent will be forced to fold.
You should never be compelled to bluff because you have not done that for a long time.
If all signs indicate that your opponent has a strong hand, you should not bluff.
If you cannot just sit without doing anything, using a semi-bluff is a good idea. This is the type of bluff backed up by a decent poker hand.
The semi-bluff works if you are both having the same hand, and though it is an aggressive move, it is not as risky as a true bluff.
It is a large bet that is being made by you to avoid a showdown, but you would not be helpless even if the showdown were to still occur.
If your betting shows a consistent trend, you should bluff.
For instance, if you had a pre-flop raised in a game holding 6-6, and the flop produced A Q 5 after getting a caller, it would be an indication of the best time to bluff because of the consistent trend.
At the same time, this should be done carefully and not too frequently during the course of the entire game, or you would be caught by the other players that you were just bluffing.
The secret of an effective bluff here is not making the others to be aware that you are following a specific trend or that you are bluffing or not during the game.
If you completely missed the flop after pre-flopping with a good hand, it could be a good idea to repeat that bet.
In some cases, this is a good time to bluff because a better hand could still be made with subsequent cards.
Now, many of the other players are aware that your bet pre-flopped the last time, and don’t know that you missed it.
If you represent your bet, pressure will be put on the other players because they will have the suspicion that you now have something better than you have actually.
Bluffing also works when there is a pair on the board.
The reason is that the chances of a person hitting a hand are reduced.
When you have 2 cards, and they are the same cards on the board, it means they are less of a flush possibility (not the same suit), less of a straight possibility (not ordered), and that out there, there are only 2 other cards which could match them to make a set.
It could be that those 2 cards had not yet come, or were either buried (especially in a low pair, would people often fold lower cards pre-flop).
In this situation, it is like having 2 cards coming on the flop, and statistically, this means only a few people would have a drawing hand or have hit their hand.
Therefore, you have a good opportunity for bluffing.
Poker bluffing is an art because the player needs to consider a lot of factors.
At the same time, the paradox of bluffing is that if nobody has ever caught you bluffing, you are either not bluffing enough or you are one of the best bluffers.
You would be bluffing too frequently if you were caught almost every time you bluff.
Late positioning and sensing weaknesses should form part of your bluffing strategies and though they do not usually win a pot, they narrow it down to a few people.
Now you should go and practice your newly learned poker bluffing skills by playing some real poker.