In order to improve your poker online game and gain an edge over your opponent’s it’s important to regularly analyze how you played hands and fix leaks or flawed logic. There are hand replaying tools out there if you prefer the more visual version. But even reading the raw hand history itself is also fine. The most obvious place to start is your losing hands. How many big blinds did you have left? What position did you get involved from? How did the betting go? Note down these details along with obviously the starting hand. As you go through more of your losing hands you will likely start to see trends that can indicate weaknesses. For example, you might always find yourself pushing all-in from a short stack. Or you might bust regularly with weak aces, getting dominating calls.
When you look at online poker hands individually try not to be too results orientated. i.e. just because you lost the hand doesn’t necessarily mean you played it badly. Don’t try to fit a better line to all hands with the benefit of hindsight. Some hands you can just write-off as unlucky. Take 5 minutes on the crucial hands to think through the betting line and if anything. Else could have been done better. And don’t just focus on hands you’ve lost, but pick out winning hands too. Yes, you might have won the hand, but was there a better way of playing it?
Analysis is important during the game
If you find you’re regularly getting knocked out from a short stack, then you should go back over some of those whole tournaments and details. Are you passing up good chances to build a stack? Are you playing too cautiously and fearing your opponents have a decent hand too often? Sometimes it is better to take some more risks when your stack is more in the higher range rather than getting chipped down so often.
Another crucial analysis method is to use simulators. Now if the simulated EV for your hand when those chips went in is greater than 26.6% then it was a good decision. There are some sites that take this process to a slightly higher level in many tools, where the simulation will be done against an opponent’s range of cards rather than their specific cards. Obviously, whatever you use it is only really as good as the data you put in it, so if you are trying to work with ranges then take some time to think through what is most realistic.
Discuss your hands in other forums
It is also useful to discuss some hands with others and best online poker forums are ideal for this. You will usually get a very wide range of answers so the importance is to concentrate on the ones that make most sense to you. There are a lot of bad players out there and they will be offering opinions too. So, use the forum replies to make you think more and consider different lines, or approaches, or elements, or factors. Never just blindly take the advice as gospel.
And remember, don’t rush to change a million things at once. But try to incorporate elements and see how they work out for you at your level.