There is nothing like playing a game of poker to de-stress and engage your mental faculties. It is among the most popular card games available and is largely based on information availability. To ace this game, you need to keep your eyes, ears and mind open.
In poker, you can never be sure how bad or good your opponent’s hand is, often until it is too late. However, as poker, especially the live ones, largely involves human interaction, you would invariably receive certain clues from your opponents. This can be based on the changes in their physical demeanor or even their betting patterns, which indicate the weakness or strength of their hands; these are essentially known as “poker tells”.
What are Poker Tells
By tells in poker, we ideally refer to actions, both verbal and physical, that the players may make to give away information about the strength of their hands. Especially when it comes to any live poker cash games, it is not uncommon to witness players revealing such information through tells, even without being aware of their own actions. Live poker tells majorly include the expressions and overall demeanor of a person.
Poker tells such as the habits, behaviors and physical actions of your opponents would provide you with insight on their likely holdings. Having the capacity to pick up on these tells can provide you with a huge advantage in a poker card game, especially if a particular tell is unconscious and reliable.
How to Spot Common Poker Tells
Now that you have a brief idea about what it entails, you must be wondering what are common tells? Well, in poker, there are several common tells. The more you play these online games the better would be your chances to understand the common poker tells.
Here are Few of Them
The combative all-in: You should try to observe the manner in which your opponents put in their chips. Factors like their body language and eye contact can tell a lot about their poker hands. If the all-in shove doesn’t quite add up, then there shall be a good chance that their holdings are weak, and they are simply trying to fake strength.
The chip count request: This is among the most common poker tells. If an opponent eyes your chip stack and asks either you or the dealer to count them, subsequently making a big bet for a good portion of your chips, then there is a high chance that they are trying to threaten you into folding and losing the minimum. If you have a good or even a medium-strength poker hand ranking, then you must do the opposite and call in such a situation.
Also Check: How to Play Poker
The relaxed player: When you find your opponents to be slouched into their chairs, fiddling with their phones and seemingly not paying attention to the hands, there is a good chance that they have it on lockdown and are trying not to scare you into folding. It would be a good move for you to disappoint them by making the fold in such a scenario.
Online Poker Tells
Top poker tells are known to include gestures, acts and various other mannerisms that a player may display while trying to disguise the strength of his/her hand. Even though many of these tells are executed subconsciously, they would essentially be subject to interpretation by opponents. When it comes to a live real money game of poker, you can observe things like how your opponents stare at you, when they look away, how they throw chips in the middle, or the way their expressions change while looking at their cards, in order to get a read at their holdings. When you play online, none of these classic tells would have any use for you as you cannot see or hear your opponent. However, this does not mean that online poker tells do not exist. These tells are largely based on the speed of the action of the opponents (raise, bet or check), the implications of their action (big bet vs. small bet), as well as how it compares to their past patterns.
Common Poker Tells - Online Poker Tells
As you go through a poker tells book or guideline, you are ideally going to find the following pointers mentioned in regards to an online game:
• Long pause that is followed by a raise: This usually implies a very strong hand
• Instant and automatic raise: Typically implies a very strong hand
• Instant automatic check: Usually happens with a weak or folding hand
• Opponent quickly calls your bet: Can imply a moderate to semi-weak hand
• Very small bets: This can be an indication of a weak hand
• Massive all-in bets: Can either be a monster hand or bluff
Poker Tells FAQ
How can you tell a ‘poker tell’?
When it comes to reading poker tells that are relevant to live games, you ideally have to carefully observe your opponents to guess their hands. However, it is not always important to visually see another player to have an insight into his/her hand or what is going in his/her head. Especially when you play online, you obviously won’t be able to check out the demeanor of your opponents, but still, their betting patterns can be big enough for you to pick up on. As you play poker for quite some time, your knowledge of advanced poker tells would definitely improve, and you shall be at a better place to understand when your opponents are trying to deceive you and when they are not.
Are poker tells real?
Yes, poker tells are quite real. However, you must note that not all poker tells are reliable. Players, especially the more experienced ones, might even act in a particular manner or say certain things to deceive their opponents as well. Fake tells can induce opponents to make poor judgments and ultimately lose out on the game. Hence, players new to the game are better off not worrying about poker reads and tells and should try to focus more on the other aspects of poker strategy.