When to Quit Playing Poker

Looking at the concept as basic as possible, you should quit a session when you are starting to get steam rolled at the table. If you are losing buy-in after buy-in and beginning to lack control over your emotions then you should quit your session. If you start to lose focus and control it is always best to quit for the day. The one thing about poker and poker games is that the games will always be there the next morning or afternoon. Whenever you want to find a game the game will be there waiting for you, so there is no sense playing poker when you are unfocused and not playing your best poker.

When you should continue to play a session is when you are crushing your opponents and playing with heaps of confidence. If you have confidence at a poker table you should play as long as possible. Once you get some confidence you can build off of that and also build up your stack. Confidence in poker is the hardest thing to maintain because of the natural swings of the game day to day, but if you have that confidence and drive yourself to succeed day in and day out, you will have tons of profitable poker sessions. Even if you haven’t got the results in the short term, you will in the long term if you keep playing with confidence.

How to identify players at the table who should quit their sessions is also a big part of when to play or quit your session. The players at the table sitting with chips that will soon be sprayed all over the table are the type of players to target. You will assume that they will bluff their chips off soon enough or put all the money in on a draw, and then you will turn a marginal session in to a highly profitable session. This one player or two players at the table should keep you playing through a session that you may have since quit. Once a player that is wildly aggressive loses a big pot or goes on tilt, you will be reaping in the benefits winning pot after pot against them, and could rack up a nice session for yourself. If this scenario happens you will be very happy with staying until the aggressive player leaves the table. Once the fish are no longer at the table you should no longer be at the table. That is a basic concept as for how to make money in the long term. Avoid the good players or players who you feel can play with you, and attack the dead money. If you look to attack the fish or really bad players you will have profitable sessions time and time again.

If you see a player that is calm, cool and collected, and a table that is very passive in general you should look for a new table. These tables are nearly impossible to win at simply because the players will not play hands with you unless they have monster hands. The type of tables you will see with things like this is consistent with online play. Most players top off their stacks and continue to fold until they wake up with a big hand. If you sit in one of these games long enough you will slowly win small amounts of money, but this isn’t exactly what you want. You would ideally want to win large amounts, but to do this you have to find a new table. Playing sessions with passive players is a recipe for disaster because you will almost never get value from hands unless you cooler them.

Ultimately, you should play in games that you can beat, and you should not play in games that you cannot beat. If you follow that basic rule, you will have long term success. The one thing not many poker players look at is long term success. Most will see short term results and assume that they can continue down that path of massive win rates, but this simply isn’t so. If you want to have continued success you have to be consistent with your decision making process. You should quit when playing better opponents and keep playing when playing poor opponents. If you do that then you will win.