Strip 4 Poker

Learning How to Calculate Poker Odds to Improve Your Overall Play

Poker is an exciting game that people love to play all around the world. It is a very simple game, but in many ways, it is incredibly complex. It is simple to understand as the rules are not complex, but every hand is different and there are many things you need to learn to be successful. Without the rules changing, new innovative strategies are still being developed as the pros improve. One of the most important things to understand as a poker player is how to calculate poker odds. By learning how to do this you will improve your chances of being a profitable player.

Poker Odds Tell You Your Probability of Winning the Hand

When you are learning how to calculate online poker odds, it is important to understand that you are working with incomplete information. You are not able to perfectly figure out your chances of winning a hand because you do not know what your opponent's hand is. You may have an idea, but you will not know for sure what it is until it is revealed to you. However, you can use odds to calculate your chances of hitting flushes, straights, and other high value hands.

To calculate your odds of winning a hand, you need to know how many "outs you have. Outs are cards that improve your hand. For example, if you have two hearts in your hand and there are two hearts on the table, you know that four hearts are out of play. Since there are 13 cards of each suit in a deck of cards, you will have 9 outs at this point. Now, it is possible that your opponent has one of your outs, or one of the players folded one of your outs, but that information is not important because it is impossible for you to know it. You need to calculate your outs and odds from unseen cards.

Simplify Percentages When Calculating Odds

When you are learning how to calculate poker odds, you need to remember that you are calculating your outs with the unseen cards. So, the calculations that you make depend on the cards in your hands and the cards on the table. For our examples, we will be referring to situations before the "river" is played. So, there are 46 unseen cards.

Using the flush example from before, you have nine outs that you can hit on the river. If you take away those 9 cards from the 46, you are left with 37 cards. So, your odds are 37 to 9. Even though it is not perfect math, you can simplify these odds by saying they are 4 to 1. As a result, you roughly have a 20 percent chance of hitting one of your outs. You can see how you can easily make these calculations with any hand you might have. At first, it might take you a little while to make these calculations, but after some time you will be able to make them in an instant.

Should You Call a Bet?

Whether you should call a bet in most situations is dependent on your chances of winning the hand at showdown after the final card has been revealed. To do this you need to calculate your odds and wait to see what your opponent bets. Using the previous example, you should calculate how much money you would normally win from your poker odds. If you had 4 to 1 odds and you made a $10 bet, you would normally win $40. However, that is not the only important factor. You also need to know how much money was already in the pot. If your $10 made the pot worth $100, you would be getting 10 to 1 odds. To make this calculation you simply divide the amount of money you are putting in by the total amount of the pot. So, in this example, your $10 bet is giving you 10 to 1 odds when your actual odds are 4 to 1. As a result, you should be calling the bet in this situation. In this situation, a bet of $30 would be giving you odds of 4 to 1 or better. As a result, you should be calling any bet of $30 or less. If they bet more than that, you should consider folding.

You Will Sometimes Lose

Remember, you are making bets based on your chances of winning the hand. So, odds are in the previous example, you will not win the hand. You will only win one out of every five times that hand played out. However, if you calculate your odds and make calls and folds based on the odds we discussed above, you will be profitable in the long run. This is of course assuming that you are making accurate assumptions of what your outs are. To do that, you will need to accurately guess which hands beat your opponent, which is much more difficult.

Learning to calculate poker odds can be overwhelming at first. However, once you start to get the hang of it, you will quickly learn that it is easy to do on the fly. Learning how to calculate your chances of winning a hand will greatly improve your chances of being a profitable player. You will need to study to make this happen, but it is a goal that is in reach for everyone.