The Poker 

Other Stuff


Place your advertising button here!
Email us for rates










Poker strategy essays

Bluffing in Limit Texas Holdem Poker

By Martin Fromage

Everybody knows about the bluff. Of all the bets youíre going to come across in your Texas Holdem career, the bluff will be the most familiar. Itís also the one most likely to make or break you as a winning poker player. It is critical to poker strategy, particularly in Texas Holdem. Anybody can win a hand when theyíve got the nuts; how you play when you donít have the nuts will separate you from the pack.

So what do you need to know about bluffing? More than you might think. The definition simply put is that a bluff is a bet intended to make another player fold a stronger hand than the one you have.

When to Bluff in Limit Holdem
The most important thing to remember about bluffing in any game, at any time, is to be selective. Have a good reason to bluff. If you bluff every time youíre behind in a hand, it will cost you. A lot. So bluff when the conditions are right: when you sense weakness in your opponent or youíve set it up perfectly through your betting patterns. In Limit Holdem, bluffing opportunities are much rarer than in No limit Texas Holdem. In No Limit you can bet as much as you have in front of you and put a lot of pressure on your opponents to fold, so the bluff is quite effective. Itís harder to do that in Limit Holdem, since thereís only so much you can bet, and players will be reluctant to fold for just one bet if they have any kind of hand.

But bluffing opportunities definitely do exist. If you find those opportunities and take advantage of them, youíll win extra bets and winning extra bets is the key to success in Limit Texas Holdem. Here are two quick examples:

Limit Holdíem Bluffing Opportunity #1: One Opponent
Pulling out the bluff on more than one opponent in Limit Texas Holdem is almost always doomed. One of them is almost always holding a hand strong enough to call just one or two more bets to see you. The more opponents, the bigger the pot is, so calling on the off chance of a bluff is a good odds play anyway. But if itís down to one opponent, and you manage to pick up on tells saying that he holds a weak hand, youíre not going to come across a better opportunity in Limit Holdíem to steal a pot with a bluff.

Limit Holdem Bluffing Opportunity #2: Small Pot
Itís just impossible to bluff your opponents if the pot gets too big. Say there are 10 big bets in the pot. Another player only needs to catch your bluff 10% of the time for it to be the right call. So they almost always will. And youíll lose. Conversely, if there are only a few bets in, your opponent will be way more likely to let go of a weak hand. Youíll only win a few bets when you bluff an opponent out of a small pot, but thatís the big difference in Limit Holdem. Winning players win extra bets. Losing players donít.



Home|Contact us

©2005-present The Holdem Lounge. All rights reserved.