Analyzing for a Beginner

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shagnscoob

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I read through some of these threads and quickly realize that a lot of times I don't have the knowledge to delve so deeply into a specific hand like you guys do, but I know the best way to learn is to analyze my own playing. I'm still playing micro limit (as per FPau's Advice For New Player's).

So here's 2 questions--

1. As a beginner, I feel unsure about a decision at least once every 2 or 3 hands, and almost every time I see the flop, so how can I start picking and choosing ones to get really in depth with?

and 2. Do you guys ever open the hand history for a night and read through each hand and review the decisions over the course of the session (as opposed to debating a small number of hands)? Would you recommend that to a beginner?


Thanks!
 
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switch0723

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1. Just post which ever ones you want, the more the merrier :). You don't really know what kind of traffic your post will get until it gets the traffic

2. Not for a beginner, as your not really sure what you are looking, or what you did wrong yet if your only a beginner. Your best bet is to just post hands.
 
Jillychemung

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Yes just post hands. But only post the hand up to the point that you have to make a decision, don't post the entire hand. When posting include any 'reads' you might have had, any stats you were using from PT or PO and anything else that you were considering before making your decision.
 
Dorkus Malorkus

Dorkus Malorkus

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(Moved thread to LP)

Random thought that popped into my head - feel free to heed or ignore as you wish.

Review a session or two and try separating your hands into three different categories.

1) "I'm certain I played this correctly"

2) "I think I played this correctly"

3) "I had no idea what to do at all here"

Post some hands in category 2 and explain your thought processes. If you get dozens of dissenting voices, take it on board. If you post a few category 2 hands and are consistently opposed by others analyzing the hand, it's likely there are fundamental flaws in your game. So next, take a step back and post some category 1 hands. If you are certain you made the right play in a hand and people are still disagreeing with you en masse, it's probably time to go study for a while. :)

As you get more and more 'agreement' with your category 2 hands, then move on and start posting category 3 hands. Don't be afraid of saying "I had no clue what to do here" - every single poker player has no clue what to do on occasion. Just provide all the information you can and let others (and yourself in absorbing and questioning the information given to you by others) take care of the rest.
 
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shagnscoob

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Would it be appropriate to just start a thread of hands that I have questions on as opposed to starting a thread for ONE specific hand? How many hands do you think people would read before not wanting to reply hahaha
 
Dorkus Malorkus

Dorkus Malorkus

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It's a common sense thing really. Nobody (well, few people) is/are going to want to trawl through 50 hands and comment on each.

For the best results I'd just stick to one thread/hand. Anything beyond half a dozen hands in a thread is probably starting to push it, and you will tend to get more brief replies the more hands you post.

But really, just post. We'll turn you onto the right path as you do - there's no need to worry too much about the preamble.
 
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shagnscoob

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Besides PokerTracker, is there a better way to sort through my hand histories to see hands that I actually played in?
 
c9h13no3

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Besides PokerTracker, is there a better way to sort through my hand histories to see hands that I actually played in?
Since PT costs about a fifth of my bankroll, I just use notepad.

Open your hand histories and then use the "Edit---> Find" tool. Then I just type in my screen name & stack size to look for hands where I won or lost the most money. For example:

Find: "C9H13NO3 is at seat 0 with"

Then I just keep hitting ctrl + F to scroll through my hands and look at how my stack size changed for a session.

A little tedious, but its free :p
 
dj11

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Since at this point, and possibly through much of the summer Poker Tracker 3 will be a free beta or in trial status, I HIGHLY SUGGEST YOU AVAIL YOURSELF OF THIS OPPORTUNITY! It may not come again for a very long time.

For me I go through my hands via Poker Tracker maybe once every 2 weeks. I look for position issues, and where I might be losing and with what hands.

Going through HH's is laborious. I believe I could not have endured it during my first 6 months of online play. However, along the line I got to where I could actually enjoy watching a game, and at the same time my ability to endure reading through a HH changed from laborious to something just a bit short of enjoyable.

The PT3 replay function will help this a bunch.

One of the functions of this forum is to get new members up to speed faster than they would have without the forum. There are many tools available, the most important one is peer review, like this. PT or other trackers are great helps, as are any books you might read, and the articles available. So, assuming you want to improve fast, using all the free tools you can will help set you free.:D
 
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feitr

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Yea PT3 has a 60 day? trial i think so there is no reason not to get it. If you intend to multitable cash games down the road it is a must.
 
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eaglezoners

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Table position is basic.

There are a variety of articles out there describing the Texas Hold'em starting hands and how best to play them before seeing any cards on the board or pre-flop and how best to play them after seeing the first 3 cards on the board and after or post-flop. But I think what gets omitted or perhaps not emphasized as strongly as it should be is the concept of POSITION. Your position on the table dictates how you should bet a certain hand or even if you should bet a certain hand.

The table is divided into three basic postional categories. Early positon when you are generally one of the first to act. Most often the BigBlind and SmallBlind are included as part of early position. Here, the problem is if you limp in with a drawing hand such as 7-8 suited, there are still 6-7 people yet to bet after you. They also describe it as there being 7 people behind you waiting to bet.

If you get a large raise from one of these later players, you will be forced to fold your bet -- hence a net loss in chips.

In the middle position, a player can play little bit more loosely than when betting in early position, as the number of players to follow is decreasing.

Finally, from late position, particularly when you have the dealer button and are the last to act, you have the advantage of seing how everyone before you acted. You will always be near the last one to bet on every betting round. This allows you to play you drawing hands and others without fear of getting pre-empted by a large raise after you.

Give this concept a lot of attention. It is not particularly difficult to understand. However, it allows you to maximize your and also is instructional on how to bet them. Each chair on the poker table on a given hand is not equal. :aetsch: ;)
 
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shagnscoob

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Well I'll only have PT for 60 days before I have to pay for it. Besides I don't want to get reliant on the stats and stuff because I like live games too much. I'd use it primarily for the history stuff. I'm going to look into downloading it if I get reallllly tired of HH. I think as long as I go through my HHs regularly it won't be that bad sifting through hundreds and hundreds of hands.

Any advice on HOW to analyze once I've picked them out?

Oh and another question. I've read Ken Warren's "Winner's Guide to Texas Hold 'Em" and also Lee Jones' "Winning Low-Limit Hold 'Em" and I just bought "Small Stakes Hold 'em" by Sklansky, Malmuth and Miller. I'm only reading these Low Limit books because FPau thinks the best starting point is low-limit, which is what I'm doing. Would I still benefit from reading books that are focused on No-Limit (Harrington) or should I try to get real good at limit first?
 
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shagnscoob

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Oh one more question.

I started with a $50 bankroll, and I'm down to 42.55. Should I focus on playing fewer hands smarter (by spending less playing time and more reading time) or should my main focus be on playing as many hands as possible with this $50?

So far I've been playing at minimum 100 hands a night. But I wish I could hit 2 or 3 hundred a night. How many should I be looking for to really see improvement?
 
dsvw56

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So far I've been playing at minimum 100 hands a night. But I wish I could hit 2 or 3 hundred a night. How many should I be looking for to really see improvement?

To get any sort of real gauge on how well you're doing takes thousands of hands. 20,000 hands is usually a decent enough sample size to get some sort of bearing on your results, though not always.
 
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shagnscoob

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Damn. Looks like i'll be hitting 4 or 5 hundred a night if I can hahaha
 
F Paulsson

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Hiya Shagbscoob,

I think limit hold 'em is ideal for getting your feet wet with poker. That's not to say that you can't play no-limit as well, but there are quite a few lessons that you will learn much faster playing limit than no-limit, because there are many more decisions per hand. In no-limit, you spend a lot of time folding. In limit, you spend a lot of time raising and calling. You learn more from raising and calling than you do from folding; seeing more showdowns gives you a better "feel" for the game. I find that people who've only played no-limit have a tendency to be a bit on the overly aggressive and/or overly paranoid side (you'll never hear a limit player say, "either raise or fold" or "he probably has a set").

Sometimes calling is the right move, as dictated by pot odds. No-limit doesn't usually concern itself with odds much as compared to limit; it's usually good enough to ask yourself "do I have the best hand?" Looking at the pot and figuring out if you have the best hand 16% of the time or 22% of the time is another beast altogether.

In my (perhaps not-so-humble) opinion.
 
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shagnscoob

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Well I'll stick to this until I get real good at it, then we'll see what happens.

If I'm looking to get in 500 hands a night it's obviously going to take a long time. How hard is it to play 2 tables at this point? Is that something I should look into or wait until I get proficient at one?
 
S93

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If I'm looking to get in 500 hands a night it's obviously going to take a long time. How hard is it to play 2 tables at this point? Is that something I should look into or wait until I get proficient at one?
My addvice whould be to keep grinding your 50$ a litle longer before start multitabling,cause u can expect a litle swing when u start adding tables.
But multitabling isint that hard just add one table at a time and when u get used to 2 u can get more and more going.
But thats just my thought and i can only manage 5 tables max at a time,far cry from the 16-24 that some of the cash rags at this site are doing.
 
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shagnscoob

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Well I'm not exactly a winning player yet, the point would be to help me get more hands in experience wise. I guess that defeats the point, I'm going to see how far I can get with this $50, hopefully I won't lose it all hahaha
 
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shagnscoob

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Ps I kick ass at 6max. I play about the same tightness (maybe very slightly less) and I'm doing much better. Either that or I've been on a heater. Or the Sklansky book is helping far more than I thought it would this soon.
 
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shagnscoob

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Now that I'm reading through Sklansky I can see why I'm better at 6max. I don't play draws very well (I would say less than my fair share of my won hands have been from draws).

It was easier for me to just check the odds and and then decide instead of playing draws aggressively the way Sklansky recommends. I need to read more of it, but I feel like I'm going to be getting a lot better in the next week.
 
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shagnscoob

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Okay here are some things I have questions about. On the most basic statistics:

There's my % seeing the flop, and % winning the showdown.

What are good ranges? I feel like in small stakes, % winning the showdown needs to be HIGH. I guess it should always be high huh... I was maintaining a good %30-50 until I started reading sklansky. I've got a %66 right now... My Flop% is usually around 25%
 
Dorkus Malorkus

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25% VPIP at 6-max is fine, at FR it's a little loose. If you're mixing the two, separate the stats and ideally concentrate on playing whichever you prefer until you feel grounded in it.

A common myth is the higher your W$SD% the better. It can be too high. Something in the 50-55% range is ideal, any less and you may be calling too loosely, any more and you may be folding the best hand too often.
 
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shagnscoob

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How can I start being a math genius like Lederer?
 
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shagnscoob

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And-- is PokerTracker worth it just for the self-analyzation?
 
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