How to Bluff in a Game of Poker

June 8th, 2010  |  Published in Gambling Games

Bluffing is a classic poker strategy. Bluffing well can win you many hands in a game of poker. However, bluffing incorrectly, or bluffing when you should not, can lead to a big loss. Knowing when and how to bluff is an important aspect to any player’s poker strategy.

What is Bluffing?

Simply put, bluffing is the act of tricking your opposing players or the house in to believing you have a high hand in poker when you do not actually have that high hand. When a player is bluffing, they will raise on a less then perfect hand in an attempt to make others around them believe they are holding the best hand at the table. Bluffing can lead a player to win with a lower hand then they would normally win with.

What are the Types of Bluffing?

There are two ways to bluff in any hand of poker, a pure bluff and a semi-bluff. In a pure bluff, a player will raise or bet on a hand that has little to no chance of winning on its own. For example, if a player has a pair of fours he or she may bet high in an attempt to make the other player’s believe he is holding the highest hand at the table. In a semi-bluff, a player will bet or raise on a hand that is not good at the moment but may improve as the round goes on. For example, if a player has four of the cards needed for a straight, he or she may bluff the bet in the hopes of getting that last card.

What is the Best Strategy for Bluffing?

Knowing when to bluff is the most important aspect of the poker skill. Bluffing when you should not have can cost you the round (and your bet.) Do not bluff when there are several players still in the round. Do not bluff if the pot is so high that your bluff would not force a player to fold. Also, do not bluff when you are playing against the type of player that you know will never fold.

Just like bluffing when you should not could cost you the round, bluffing when you should can help you win it. Knowing when to bluff is the second most important aspect of the strategy. Bluff when all the other player’s have folded and you are only facing one opponent. Bluff when you can tell the weaknesses of the other players and you are confident that they have low card hands. Also, bluff when you are playing a game that has a community card, such as Texas Hold ‘Em, and that community card helps your hand.

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