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Any tips for playing live?

Any tips for playing live? - Wed Jun 22, 2011, 01:11 PM
Swaxwell's Avatar
Since: Sep 2010
Posts: 315
I have played live 3 times now at a low buy-in local pub league. I really enjoy the experience, and have had some success, but I struggle with some of the aspects of live play, e.g.

Shuffling and dealing: I might as well have not evolved opposable thumbs when given a pack of cards. This means that I don’t really take advantage of position on the button because I’m focusing on not screwing up the shuffle or miss-dealing. Also I worry about giving away tells when c-betting or semi bluffing from the button because I have to deal the cards.

Stack sizes: Pokerstars so lovingly provides exact information about the size of the pot, opponents stack size, and my own stack size. Without this information I get a bit lost in terms of bet-sizing and commitment decisions.

Shaking/giving away physical tells: I sometimes get nervous and my hands start to shake when I hit big or am bluffing.

Any advice on the above problems, or just live play in general would be much appreciated. Thanks.
Wed Jun 22, 2011, 02:39 PM
!!!111Dan's Avatar
Since: Jul 2010
Posts: 3,290
Swax, on dealing, don't sweat it too much to let it get in the way of playing...think of it as just a chore you have to do to play the game. Don't worry about looking slick or taking too long with it. In fact, I suggest for your shuffle that you just wash the deck. Very easy and effective. Just spread all the cards out and mix them up for a few seconds...mix well.

On nervousness, don't look at your cards pre-flop until it's your turn to act. I am the same as you, in that, if I get bullets, and I've seen it in many players, hands start to shake a bit, but the bigger tell is the breathing. Once a guy had Aces over my Jacks, I had raised pre and he popped it again, flop came 10 high, i put a small bet, (very early in tourney) and he shoved all in. I looked at him sitting on my left and his chest was heaving. ....It was an ez read and fold.

On stacks, well, sometimes you have to ask, but try not to. Always know your opponents stacks approximately. Use the hands that you don't deal to count and recount their stacks.

Take your time,. don't talk much about the cards...other stuff is fine...and know that others will be there to make sure the deal and play are going according to rules. You're all there to have fun.

Hope this helps just a bit.
Wed Jun 22, 2011, 06:50 PM
pokerstar671's Avatar
Since: Aug 2010
Posts: 1,206
I think after a while youll get used to everything. I still get nervouse when I first join a game. Just be confident and play solid. Try wearing hoodies and shades. And I think !!!11dans advice is good also. Whenever I play live I like to drink it calms my nerves but not to much. Try not to talk to anyone at the table unless you have to like if your announce a raise or something like that they all want to get into your head.

Last edited by pokerstar671; Wed Jun 22, 2011 at 06:58 PM..
Wed Jun 22, 2011, 08:44 PM
DeViLBoY452's Avatar
Since: May 2011
Posts: 52
if your shaking is a tell then just do what I do and purposely shake every hand....
Thu Jun 23, 2011, 01:44 AM
effsea's Avatar
Since: Jul 2010
Posts: 3,609

Last edited by effsea; Thu Jun 23, 2011 at 01:52 AM..
Thu Jun 23, 2011, 04:21 PM
Swaxwell's Avatar
Since: Sep 2010
Posts: 315
Thanks for the tips guys, much appreciated.
Thu Jun 23, 2011, 05:45 PM
spike8998's Avatar
Since: Apr 2010
Posts: 853
I play live each week
Don't sweat it and have fun
If you make sum cash cool if not try to remember what the others are playing
So next time you play them you have an idea of the range of cards they will play especially post flop
When it comes to dealing/shuffling/shaking , relax be yourself

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