Saturday, January 28, 2006

Work on your Foundation

Work on your foundation.

This is my new concept for building my game. Makes sense. If I have a better foundation, I have set myself up for the future. I have thought about what I am doing, my results, and where I want to be 6 months from now. I have experienced disappointing results lately and have seen this displeasure spoken of in other blogs. In my mind, it came back to this: If I cannot consistently beat the lower stakes games, what the hell am I doing in the higher stakes?!? Putting aside my old enemy variance, I should be able to consistently beat the low stakes Limit Hold Em games before I move into 2/4 or 3/6.

Why? I am bankroll “sensitive” right now. Simply put, I am tired of it shrinking!! How do I remedy this? My thought right now is play the lower limits to keep improving my game and rebuild my confidence. The swings will be much softer relative to my bankroll (~$200 right now). Case in point was the other night when I managed to get some hands in. I fired up PP and sat down at the lowest limit available (.50/1 I think) and I played well. I was never down more than a few bucks and ended the session up a little over 2 dollars. More importantly, I felt good about my game, reads, laydowns, lookups, aggressiveness, and positional play. That was more important to me than ending up 2 bucks. We all want to end our sessions up, but that is not always plausible.

Once you have had a taste of the action at a higher level, I think it is tougher to self impose yourself to the lower levels. You feel that the good decisions you make should be worth more (as they are at a higher level) but if you are not capable (yet) of making good decisions consistently, then I feel you are better served working on that at the lower levels. You must harden yourself to the annoying suckouts that seem to occur with greater frequency at limit, especially low limit, and be glad that you are playing with such speculative players. You should be able to get their money.

It is easier to write this than it is to employ this. I may change my mind in a month, but for now I will not play above the .50/1 on PP or .25/,50 if I transfer my bankroll to another site. (Pokerstars is looking promising right now).


TripJax said...

Good luck Josh. Sounds like you head is in the right place...I think the game will follow.

Sean said...

Josh, a recommendation:

Transfer your money to another site ASAP and take advantage of any bonuses there. You'll find it much faster to grow your bankroll if you take advantage of bonuses to offset the rake that they take.

Trying to grow your bankroll in the bottom party games will take a long, long time since Party has a nasty rake structure in .5/1 and 1/2 (making it much harder to be a winning player). If you can get a reload bonus at Party, that is different. Party has one of the fastest bonus clear rates, even at low limits (over $10/hr).

For sites, look around before you decide. is a good resource. My recommendations are PokerStars (no bonuses, but easy games and a nice rake structure -- I think they may not even rake the tiny limit games). Something on the PokerRoom network might work too -- Eurobet has a large bonus (it can take a long time to clear though) and Full Contact Poker ( has effectively 50% rakeback with their bonus. Ultimatebet is also a good site.

What I'm trying to say is, if you are building your bankroll, take advantage of bonuses and move your money around if you need to (get a Neteller account!). You'll find that the bonus money will often amount to more than any poker winnings, even if you are a really good player.

Good luck! Go Steelers!