This is a discussion on Gut feeling VERSUS MATH genius. within the online poker forums, in the General Poker section; I think i speak on behalf of the majority when i say. Im no math wizard. i know how many cards i need to win(outs) 


#1




Gut feeling VERSUS MATH genius.
I think i speak on behalf of the majority when i say. Im no math wizard. i know how many cards i need to win(outs) and more or less the basic formula to know the percentage of hitting those outs but MATH just AINT my thing. are good math people better at poker than others who just have gut feelins and play a certain style. should i take up a stastistics and math course to get better at my poker game? (lol) seriously: question of thread. are all poker pros mathematical geniuses? or not? can someone that doesnt love math do good at poker in the LONG RUN?
sometimes the numbers dont add up and ur call is a bad call but u feel like making it and ur right too. they will tel you,it was a bad call u got lucky and they may be right. example.what do you do when your gut says "call" but your math says "its an unprofitable longterm call"? 
#5




I think that any player can be good, they don't have to be a math whiz.
However, basic math should be used to calculate certain things on the fly. Things like pot odds, and percentage of hitting your card(s). I wouldn't worry about it. Just keep studying poker theory a little at a time. Any serious poker player should always continue learning about the game. 
#6




I think that its alot easier to be good online if you are good at math as opposed to just going off "Feel".. live play theres alot more things you can take into account to add to that feeling of what situations are good or bad.. online you just dont have the psychological dynamic so its much better to be good at math..

#7




re: Poker & Gut feeling VERSUS MATH genius.
Try to memorize a small chart of odds like this chart [link no longer works] No math yet just memorization. Then use the rule of 4 & 2 for flop and turn decisions, it's not precise, but good enough in most spots. Anyone can multiply x4 or x2. Like previously stated, if you review enough hands after a session with an odds calculator, then eventually you know just by looking at a situation and not actually calculating the odds in your head.

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#10




I was always a math wiz.. even as a yound kid, so I guess I'm lucky.
I'd suggest working on it if it doesn't come naturally for you. I actually really enjoy working on it which is obviously a good thing. I have a question for you (a simple one)... if you're in a tournament situation, you've raised in whatever position and another player now reraises allin (on whatever stack.. say it be 15bb's... or 20.. 24.. whatever). Aren't you interested in knowing if your call here in this spot is +ev? Don't you want to know how much equity you'd need vs. villain's range to know if calling off is a good thing or a bad thing? (just from a chip ev aspect) This is just one very, very, very small example. Personally I can't understand how one can study the game w/o getting deep'ish' into the math. 
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Good luck at the tables 
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#13




I think math is only important up to a point of calculating pot odds and card odds. In online poker, those things are going to give you the most edge because players move around so much and because you can never really get to know a person or their facial expressions. Even in tournaments, you can get moved around from table to table without enough time to really get a grasp on how an opponent plays.
That said, math will only get you so far, especially in a live game. Even in online poker, where tells are going to be especially difficult, sometimes (especially if it's a free roll in my case) I just have to go with a feeling as to how I think an opponent will react if I make a certain move, generally a bluff. Knowing whether to play tight or loose, knowing when to and when not to bluff, and even when you can pressure an opponent out of a pot is a result of a lot more than just calculating odds. You can calculate odds all day long, but its when you develop a feeling about how the others will react to certain decisions you make that I think you can really expand your game  but that's hard to do when you're playing against a constantly changing group of players. Then again, the whole reason you make a decision in poker from a tell is based upon the probability that their reaction will be as you assumed. 
#14




re: Poker & Gut feeling VERSUS MATH genius.
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#15




I can't remember where but I read an article once in some poker mag or newsletter about this topic. It said what people refer to as intuition may not be all that different from playing as a mathematical player. If you seen a situation before that memory is stored in your unconscious. Eventually through repetition you'll get conditioned to make the optimal math play and it will seem instinctual.

#16




A few thoughts:
 Math is no more or less important live than it is online. The math is just easier to do online because all the numbers are right there in front of you whereas live you're expected to keep track of the pot size etc for yourself. And being able to make reads and look at tells live doesn't make the math any less important.  The math you need to be doing at the table isn't actually that hard. You don't have to be a 'genius' to do it, so don't let the fact that it might look a little confusing at first put you off learning it. You don't actually need to be able to make precise EV calculations at the table while you're playing  that's for after the game when you've actually got time to analyse hands. 
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For one thing, it's not necessary to be a math whiz to be a very good or even great player. But the less math you know, whether explicitly or by being able to make accurate ballpark estimates due to experience, the better you have to be at reading and evaluating your opponents. And no matter how good you are at this, improving your understanding of poker math is more likely to help than hurt. 
#19




Learning the poker maths is a faster way to get good. IMHO, maybe 10 times faster. But even the math whizzes will have to apply those math skills and that requires playing hands. So a non math whiz might easily have to put in 10X the hands of a math whiz to get approximately the same benefit.
But I am convinced that you can get good without being a math whiz. It is a matter of osmosis, you just absorb the generalized data, process it, and it shows up in your game. 
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#21




re: Poker & Gut feeling VERSUS MATH genius.
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I have learned new stuff via the math, but for the most part, those new things could be classified as variations on other themes. 
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#26




I am a solid player and I do not rely heavily on math.
I calculate odds and generally can think of pod odds without really thinking about them. I play more on feel and reads. My reads are generally pretty solid and I play based on that. 
#27




Anyone who talks about gut saying fold and math saying call (or vice versa) doesn't understand math. The math of poker is relatively simple (and the math that isn't simple can be simulated with tools like pokerstove). You use reads to assign a range to your opponent, and with that range you could do math to determine the correct play. But if your gut is saying call it's because your read is that when villain takes the line they did you are likely good the appropriate % of the time. If you're actually calling when the math says fold it means you are making an unprofitable decision which will cost you money in the long run.

#29




I pretty much use logical math for exploits, for example small stack size and tight passive style on the bubble hes never bluffing here
or more times then not villain is min raising junk on the flop. I know my equity but never really use it I just count outs/% My instinct tend to be more reliable 
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#31




I feel that being able to do math in my head benefits me in that my mind has already calculated the odds and money so all I have to really pay attention to is the other players actions. As mentioned if you can recall their bet size versus their range you can help decide if you are making a potentially profitable call or just wasting your money.
Most anyone can memorize the out charts and learn basic pot odds, out odds, even implied odds when they get a better understanding of the game. Now when it comes to the math of BRM and the EV ratios etc if you are planning to play for a living you need to really understand this aspect. You are going to be playing for a good hourly return on your time. So you need to make sure you are making that on average over the long haul. Not just have a good run for a week. 
#32




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He has said several times in interviews that he is not a "math guy". He plays based on instincts developed initially by playing a large volume of hands online. 