The strategies, techniques, and mannerisms
of all card-players serve to influence
a game’s outcome.
In my observation, however, most players
— sometimes even the professionals — routinely make
five critical playstyle blunders.
After becoming aware of these blunders,
anyone — including you — can gain a significant
edge in the world of cards.
Would you like to learn
of these five common mistakes?
Show of hands?
(Obviously I’m just kidding.)
hang around and hopefully learn something new!
It’s Shawn (Bits of Real Panther) here;
I hope this evening finds you well.
Today we’ll be exploring five common card-player
mistakes and the techniques that you can use
to exploit those mistakes.
Now, these techniques are simple and straightforward,
and you’ll be able to put them into practice
in short order.
And, as always, be sure to pop that subscribe
button — right there — and post your
OK, let’s do this.
The first common card-player mistake is the act of
rearranging the cards in one’s hand.
For example, in games where several cards
are held in the hand at once (games like euchre,
5-card draw poker, gin, things like that),
players will often rearrange the cards in
their hand by suit, by matching numbers, and/or
in ascending or descending order, depending
on the game and the player.
Now this practice is very unwise, as it can
reveal to more astute players the constitution
of one’s hand.
In fact, by surreptitiously watching your
opponents during this “reorganization phase,”
you can over time develop the ability to approximate
what those players are holding.
Moreover, most players, when drawing new cards,
will insert those cards into their hands in
the appropriate places,
further suggesting what they hold.
do NOT rearrange
the cards in your hand.
The second common card-player mistake is
the act of blindly following a set game plan.
Players who use expressions like “I always
do this” or “I always do that” (in reference
to gameplay) GENERALLY are exposing their
unwillingness to incorporate new information
into their game tactics.
Unlike those players, you should consider
each new piece of information as it becomes
available to you and use that information
to “guide” your subsequent actions.
Also, and in conjunction, you should maintain
an element of unpredictability in your playstyle,
as this will better conceal from your opponents
the makeup of the cards you hold.
For example, say you’re playing 5-Card Draw
poker and you’re dealt three-of-a-kind.
In such a situation the most mathematically-feasible
play is probably to discard the two off-cards
and draw two new ones; however,
by sometimes replacing only ONE of the off-cards
you might mislead your opponents into believing
that you hold two pair or perhaps are on a
straight- or flush draw.
In summary, always vary your gameplay;
do NOT blindly follow a set game plan.
The third common mistake is the act of looking
at one’s hole cards multiple times.
In Texas Hold’em especially, players routinely
look back at their hands (which consist of
only two cards) most often right after
the flop is put into play — the flop being the
first three community cards
placed on the table.
Remembering two cards of the same suit
is only three pieces of information (the two
cards and the one suit); whereas remembering
two cards of different suits is actually five
pieces of information (the two cards,
the two suits, and the correlation of each card
to its suit).
Because remembering five pieces of information
requires more mental strength than does three,
many people unintentionally reveal that they
are either double-suited or single-suited
simply by looking at, or by not looking at,
their hole cards at inopportune times during
the game — such as in the example here,
right after the flop is put into play.
do NOT look at your hole cards multiple times.
The fourth common mistake is the act of failing
to watch one’s opponents at critical times
during the game.
Now what I mean is, the overwhelming majority
of card-players are most concerned with the
value of their own hands; they are much more
eager to peek at their own hole cards,
or to watch new cards as they’re being flipped
over, etc., than they are to observe the other
things happening at the table — these things
being, primarily, the mannerisms of
You should avoid this impulse,
as it can cheat you of pertinent information.
You should focus on the actual cards only
AFTER all opportunities to discern your opponents’
reactions have passed.
For example, in 7-Card Stud, as new cards
are being dealt face-up to each of your opponents,
watch that player for any kind of response
he or she might have to receiving that card
FIRST, THEN look at the card itself SECOND;
because, looking at the card and then
the player, you miss out on that player’s reaction.
In summary, whenever an opponent’s hand
is about to change in value, watch that player
for any sort of reaction above all else;
do NOT worry so much about your own cards.
The fifth and final common mistake frequently
made by most card-players is the act of making
decisions based on emotion, boredom,
When the hour is late, the alcohol is flowing,
and tempers are high, and cell-phones abound,
some players succumb to the whimsicality
of making plays that they would not normally
make for reasons not bound by logic:
They play a hand because they’ve folded the last
twenty, or they call a trick because they
weren’t paying attention, or they re-raise
because they don’t like the person
who raised originally, and so on.
And on that last point, in regard to emotion
especially, watch any of those poker television
shows and you’ll see what a negative influence
emotion can have on certain professional card-players.
They just don’t seem to “get it.”
For yourself, however, simply by maintaining
a calm composure can you avoid the emotional
pitfalls that seem to very often snare these
professional players and
thus you greatly improve
the efficacy of your own gameplay.
In summary, base your gameplay decisions on
reason; do NOT base them on emotion, boredom,
And there we have it.
This methodology is of course by no means
comprehensive, but diligent execution of these
practices should bear fruit at the card table.
If you found this video helpful, or would
like to share some suggestions of your own,
feel free to post your feedback in the comment
And, as always, I invite you to like and subscribe
— I always appreciate that.
And lastly, before we conclude,
the word of this video is paucity.
Paucity: the presence of something only
in small or insufficient quantities or amounts.
Keep your eye on the prize,
and I will see you next time.