Summer is an exciting time for poker players and lovers of the game – not only is the World Series of Poker already underway in Las Vegas, but the WSOP.com Summer Grind Tour has just taken place, in which three online bracelets were up for grabs. With so much at stake, it’s vital that professional players manage their bankroll sensibly. After lack of skill, poor bankroll management is the number one way that players go broke. Today we’re revealing their tactics, so you’ll know how to manage your bankroll during the World Series of Poker.
First things first – if you take away one thing from this article, it should be this: your poker bankroll should only consist of money that you can afford to lose. The money you use to enter competitions should be money that you have set aside for poker and not for paying your bills. If you’re gambling with money that you need to live, it will be impossible to keep a clear head and to play at your optimum.
The amount of money you have in your bankroll should also always dictate the stakes you play for. This may seem simple enough, but putting this into practice is often easier said than done when you’re carried away on the action. Is this your only bankroll? If you have access to more than one bankroll, or if a loss of $500 or so doesn’t matter to you as you can quickly get your hands on more cash – you can play for higher stakes. Should you only have a set amount in your bankroll that you wont be able to replenish for some time, it’s important that you play more cautiously, otherwise you could be out of the competition after just one game with no chance of winning back your money.
When it comes to taking a shot on higher stakes, you should avoid doing this if you are doing so in an attempt to win back losses. Often players who are on a losing streak take a shot at higher stakes in a bid to win their money back and end up losing even more of their bankroll. By all means, reward yourself by taking a shot one or two levels above your current stakes, but ALWAYS go back down and stick to your original bankroll management plan once you’re finished. Just because your bankroll is for a specific buy-in doesn’t mean you have to restrict yourself to playing at those stakes. If things are going well and you feel confident, move up! If you feel uncomfortable or out of control, don’t be afraid to move back down to build up your confidence again. Shot taking is an important part of skill development and it’s a great way to remain motivated and excited by the game. Don’t be afraid to take a shot, but don’t be afraid to pull out either.