Learn Simple Tactics to Beat Beginners at Poker

Most people think beginners are easy preys in poker. Newbie players do not know what they are doing and you may think you can take advantage of their lack of knowledge. That might not happen always!

The beginner won’t hesitate in taking advantage of the situation if luck is on his side! You should always assess the expected value to make a well-informed decision. 

Many beginners do not play the game correctly. It can be daunting to predict their next move because they do not know how to take advantage of mediocre or good hands. This post will reveal some basic tactics to beat a beginner at poker. Continue reading to spot and haunt your newbie prey. 

Spotting a Beginner:

It shouldn’t be tough to identify a new poker player. They have some tendencies which expose them and you can capitalize on those tendencies. Let’s reveal those tendencies to learn how to use them for your benefits. 

Newbies who play numerous hands:

This kind of poker players are easy to recognize. They won’t waste any time if they got a dominated hand. These players often limp into many pots and they raise the stake only to check the flop. You can play these players in a few interesting ways:

Capable of folding:

Suppose you got position, you should raise and place a bet if the newbie opponent call pre-flop and check to you. In case the opponent call, he might have a draw or piece. You should assess your hand and then slow down.  

Calling station:

You should limp behind pre-flop and avoid raising too much. Avoid excess bluffing your newbie opponent excessively. 

Put the opponent on a hand:

A newbie player mostly plays standard hands and it is easy to assess their cards’ range. 

A newbie player who is overly committed: 

Most newbies are calling stations. They behave like a table sheriff! You should ensure they call bets on all streets regardless of the type of hands they hold. Keep the following things in your mind when playing against overly committed players:

  • You should avoid bluffing a calling station. Such an opponent can benefit you a lot when you got a great set of cards. 
  • The moment you get a strong hand, avoid slowing down. Assess the bet amount the opponent can call and make a move. 
  • A calling station will raise only when he gets a strong hand. Be cautious because the opponent might hold two pairs. 

A newbie who chases:

It’s easily to recognize a newbie who likes to chase. Such opponents continue to call bets on draws, even if they don’t get the necessary odds. This type’s players chase over-cards and they won’t waste any time to call on a draw. This is how you play to a chaser:

  • Avoid betting to protect the hand. Let the opponent miss his draw and make him pay for it. 
  • Be extra cautious when a straight draw or flush hits. 
  • Suppose your opponent is in the chasing mode and place a huge river bet, you should make a call. The opponent might be holding a decent hand!

Newbies who bluff quite often: 

Is there an opponent, who is placing large bets and making nonsense raises? He is going to play every hand without assessing the situation at the table. It is his tendency to look aggressive. Such players like to strength at the table and they do not care whether they lose a big hand. 

This is how you should play to such players:

  • The moment you spot the pattern, you should go with your instinct. You can call oversized bets which do not make a sense at all. Only seasoned players make a large bet to represent a bluff. Newbies do not do that!
  • A beginner would raise the betting value the moment he gets a winning set of cards. You should observe his bluffing pattern to take advantage of his position and win the pot amount. 

Playing a passive beginner:

Be extra cautious when playing a passive beginner. He may not play several pots and he would prefer calling pre-flop. The moment such players raise pre-flop, they usually check. Such kind of players also raise the minimum if they get marginal hands. They are afraid of losing money and they last in the game only if they got a strong hand. 

  • You can bluff such players at will if they don’t show aggression. 
  • Raise with a wide range of hands if opponents bet small or limp pre-flop. 
  • Avoid betting if such an opponent is betting strong. Do not play the round until you get a great set of cards.  
  • You should bet scare cards. 
  • Try a few scary bet sizes to show you got monsters. 
  • Suppose you are in the blinds, prefer calling a raise against the opponent in a late position. 

A beginner who assesses the hand strength before betting:

It is a typical tendency of beginners to bet small with poor hands and large with a strong hand. They prefer to raise small with big cards. They believe it helps them in building the pot with maximum players. You should play this type’s beginners in the following way:

  • Observe the opponent for predictable patterns. 
  • Play the game with the type of hands you get and not according to the hand you assign to the opponent. 
  • Suppose the opponent is betting small, he has a weak hand. You can bluff him and make him fold. 
  • Do not ignore small raises before pre-flop because large bets are coming. You can expect the opponent to hold a big pocket pair. 

Learn What Type of Beginner the Opponent is:

You will find two types of beginners at a poker table, scared or careless. Scared ones call too often and they fold in most raises. Careless ones play aggressively and they make wild raises. Your chances of winning the money increase the moment you realize the characteristics of your beginner opponent. 

Playing a scared beginner:

  • Most beginners have only seen some epic poker movies. They are not familiar with most hands. The hands they are familiar with are pretty rare. Many beginners get scared after flop if they fail to connect properly. It allows you to bet probably every flop. 
  • You can raise probably every 2nd or 3rd hand and the opponent will wonder how you are getting such great hands. 
  • Always make a premium bet on the river. A newbie won’t grasp the concept the moment he misses his draw. He will probably fold on most occasions if you continue to do so. 
  • You should never miss an opportunity to capitalize on the ranking mistake of a newbie. Most beginners are not familiar with the ranking. Spot such a player and take advantage of his poor knowledge of the game.  
  • A calling-station mostly calls or folds. Newbies often call and remain in the game. Some even try it to avoid embarrassment. They wait for the river and fold once it is dealt. You should bet every possible street if you got a premium pair. Go big to grab a huge win. 
  • Suppose there is an aggressive newbie, you should be cautious. Even though the opponent is scared, he won’t be able to resist the aggression if he gets a strong hand. You should bet low against such players because they might win this round. 

Playing a careless beginner:

You should rely upon the basic poker math to beat a careless beginner. He might not be familiar with this thing. You can easily extract more from such players and take a big sum of money to your home. 

  • A careless opponent can never get it that you call a 2-3x raise with J-T. He won’t pay attention that you got big hands, so just follow his aggression and beat him when the pot size is appealing. 
  • Do not get puzzled between a careless player and a calling station. Some individuals just call when they spot an appealing family pot. Get into play with a raise to scare the opponent and make him fold. 

If your opponent is checking his stack the moment after flop, it shows he is a well-versed poker player. A player checking hole cards is not sure about his next move. You will enjoy the company of such a player at the table. 


Beginners are easy to beat only when they make common newbie mistakes. Some smart guys show off those mistakes to allure you. Do not consider your opponent weak if you know he is a newbie. He might already be familiar with all the tactics.

You should carefully observe the newbie’s betting patterns. Try to read his hands and focus on his tendencies. Play the player when most of your guesses match the reality. It will take a few minutes but you will dominate the game. Thus, it will be easy to extract more out of your newbie opponent and beat him more often.

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