When to Move up in Stakes

by Davida Mintz Jan 5, 2014

You may feel like your chip stack is preventing you from moving up, but regardless of the size of your bankroll, the vast majority of players should start in the small stakes and work their way up. That means playing the Classic 1500 chip Tables until your game is solid enough to make the leap to a higher limit. Ask yourself if you’re making good decisions and you’re instinctually in tune with the game. Without hesitation, many small stakes players will answer yes. Everyone progresses at their own pace, so players who decide to stick it out in the small stakes where the competition is more manageable have the potential to make just as much money.

Moving Up

You know when your game is improving, but that’s not enough. You need tracking data to find out if your results match your experience. Five-O Poker provides statistics that include your wins, losses and how you stack up against the competition in the weekly race. The updated information appears on the homepage to the right of your picture. You may be improving as a player, but it you’re bleeding chips, give it another month in the small stakes, and then re-evaluate.

On the other hand, if you’ve been working on your game, and it’s paying off, take a stab at a higher stakes table. Only if you have enough chips to stay in the game. There’s no reason to limit your profit potential by playing at stakes that are too low. Moving back to the small stakes temporarily is always an option.

There are two ways to move up in limits in Five-O Poker. Players can choose a higher stake game in the Classic Tables, or enter the Pro Tables where you are technically playing for a higher level even in the 1500 game. That’s because you can count on at the very a minimum bet of 1500 being placed, and often much larger bets and raises.

High Stakes Classic

The games are the same when stakes rise in the Classic Tables, but it doesn’t feel the same. I played several rounds at the 10,000 level to report my experience. The game was completely different for me because of the intense pressure I felt when a third of my stack was in jeopardy. I calmed down, played what I needed for information, and left down 9-thousand-chips down. Bottom line, the high stakes Classic Tables are a welcome challenge provided you have enough chips to play comfortably and can withstand the pressure.

Mid Stakes Pro

The Five-O Pro 1500 and 2500 are my favorite tables, and good ones to take a stab at once you feel confident at the low stakes Classic Tables. Betting adds an extra element to the game. It forces you to be fairly certain who will win when the final card is placed. Even if you can’t keep up at first, it’s worth playing to practice betting, raising and folding. These are the primary moves in Texas Hold’ em.

When you’re starting, just throw out a bet when you think you have the best hand.You will lose the most money when you can’t fold the worst hand. When your opponent bets, take a moment to consider how likely it is that you will win, When you’re pretty sure he’s got you beat, save your chips and fold.

Final Thoughts

It’s important to take shots at higher limits. It will improve your game, and you’re just testing the water. Once you’re reliably beating the new higher stakes, consider moving up again. Don’t feel like a failure if it doesn’t work out, and don’t be afraid to move down in stakes. Every poker player goes through downswings, and without dropping down in stakes, they risk losing everything.

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8 thoughts on “When to Move up in Stakes

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