Once the online poker novice feels confident with their game, there will inevitably be times both with online and live poker when you’re not involved in the action for long stretches of time. You will need some coping strategies for these times. Not being involved when you don’t need to be is actually a skill. If you’re the impatient type this can be hard to master but if you can learn to cope with down time at a poker table it is certainly a great skill to have. You don’t want to get antsy and start committing to a hand that isn’t a winner.
You might think that because you are out of the action there is nothing to learn. Not so! What you should be doing is closely watching your table mates to see patterns in their play and potential weaknesses you can cash in on. Is there a reckless player who is playing nearly every hand? Is someone on tilt? Is there a weak player who is making the wrong moves? By concentrating on the game you’ll soon pick up on your table mates’ methods and when the cards eventually start to fall your way you can take full advantage.
One of the advantages of online poker is that you can have two or more games on the go while you wait for your killer hand. This helps you stay focused and again stops you from making any rash moves out of boredom.
Alternatively you can give yourself a break from your usual game and try something a little different. Perhaps a Sit ‘n’ Go would suit your mood better if you’re looking for a quick poker fix. If you’re feeling very confident you could try a cash game for stakes a little higher than usual – nothing surer to improve your concentration than putting your cash on the line.