Guest Author: Grant Kennedy

Taking a bad beat in poker can be a really frustrating thing.  A bad beat, in poker parlance, is losing a hand that is initially thought of as a winning hand.  This often happens for example when someone who has a hand of a pair of aces or any suited cards continues through the betting rounds upping the ante every time only to lose to a player who simply gets lucky when making an improbable draw or hitting a miracle card.  Poker bad beats such as this happens all the time, is part of variance, and is considered to be a normal occurrence that any good poker player should know how to accept.  Not all good hands result in winning the pot, good hands also result in poker bad beats.

Getting frustrated after poker bad beats is an effect often seen in poker newbies.  Those new to the game of poker are often not in control of their emotions and can easily be overcome by anger when they become victims of poker bad beats.  This kind of behavior is referred to in poker circles as being on a tilt.  Being on a tilt is normal happenstance.  Knowing how to prevent tilt will help any poker player hold his ground in any poker game.  Keeping one’s cool after poker bad beats can ensure a player’s longevity in the game and increase his chances of winning despite the fluctuations in his bankroll.

As poker is a game of chance.  Even the best strategies can be expected to fail at some point because of the unpredictability of the cards and the way they are dealt.  The best way for poker players to enjoy playing the game is to have a good grip on the way their emotions come into play.  Others are actually able to use emotions as part of a texas hold em psychology play.  Psyching out a player and causing him to go on a tilt intentionally by a number of actions can cause a player to lose sound judgement and bring about bad decisions and loses.

Getting out of a tilt is easier than recognizing it.  A player has to be sensitive about the way he is reacting to things for him to recognize signs of going on a tilt.  Feelings of frustration over a lost hand while all the while expecting it to be a clear winner can eventually bring forth feelings of anger.  Feelings like that could only work to a player’s detriment.  Knowing how to prevent tilt is something that should be mastered by any player who wants to keep on bringing home the pot.

Here are some of the tips on how to prevent tilt:

  1. Play poker as it is – a game of decisions and a game of chance.  Do not get easily irked by a bad beat.  Keep your cool and continue playing and hoping that the next pot will be yours.
  2. Lower your variance by playing passively.  If you must keep on playing, you can play tightly and lower your risks of losing.
  3. When emotions are extremely high and uncontrollable, it is best that you leave the table temporarily or permanently depending on your state of mind.  It will be useless to stay on the table on a tilt when chances of winning are slim anyway because of bad judgment.

Good luck at the tables!

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