When playing online poker, do you have a set bankroll to game with? If you do, there are numerous benefits to managing that bankroll carefully, rather than just gaming on a whim. Good bankroll management can limit your losses, increase your long-term profits and help you to game more effectively.
Whether you set a small amount of money aside to play for the day, or you have a pool of poker money that you frequently top up, a bankroll is the fund you use specifically for your gambling. It should not be money that you rely on for other things, such as paying bills. Bankroll management means using wagering strategies to limit your losses and organise your winnings so that you can keep playing for longer.
A basic bankroll management tip is to have a maximum of 5% of your bankroll in play at any given time. Many experienced poker players even limit themselves to buy-ins that are as little as 1% of their bankroll. If you have £1,000 to bet, for instance, you might limit yourself to poker tournaments with buy-ins of no more than £10, rather than £100 games. Then, when you double your bankroll to £2,000, you can start playing £20 games. Conversely, if your bankroll drops to £500, you restrict yourself to £5 games, until your cash reserve is back up to the next threshold.
There are a number of reasons to stick to such bankroll management tactics:
First and foremost, if you are careful with your bankroll then you can avoid going bust. No matter how good a poker player is, simple variance (how the cards fall) means that it’s not unusual for them to lose 10 games in a row, based purely on luck. If that’s 5% of your bankroll, you can simply continue playing through the run of bad luck. However, if you’re playing £100 games out of a £500 pool, then you can quickly go bust just because you got unlucky.
When your bankroll can easily absorb your losses, it’s easier to keep playing your natural game without the losses becoming too stressful. You can start to see each game more objectively, helping you to avoid “tilt” (becoming frustrated after a bad beat and diverging from your optimal poker strategy). Losses due to bad luck are less likely to ruin your bankroll, so you can keep a clearer head. In a game like poker this is especially important, as the fear of losing a large sum could hinder you from playing your best, resulting in you folding strong hands, for example.
Good bankroll management promotes long-term thinking, which itself encourages a more sophisticated strategy for your poker. You can start setting yourself goals, planning for higher stakes games as your bankroll increases. With a solid bankroll behind you, you can set yourself win and loss limits that will help you to enjoy your poker more in the long run.
Careful management of your bankroll can extend your overall playing time and lead to more profitable long-term goals. If you want to see how much more effectively it makes you play, try it out today at partypoker!