Poker, unlike other card games, is very dependent on psychology. When you learn to read and anticipate the behavior of your own competitors, you are halfway there. There are two main styles of poker: tight and loose.
Any of them is still divided into brutal and passive.
The purpose of this article is not to determine which of them is better and more profitable, but to learn how to determine what style of poker play, tight or loose, your competitor uses at the table and, thanks to this, build an effective strategy against him.
Tight Poker Style
The tight style of play is characterized by caution, the least risk, and only entry into the process with strong or good hands. Usually, such players fold weak cards already before the flop. Their favorite compositions are pocket pairs (pairs of Aces, Rulers, Queens, Jacks, as well as Ace-King, Ace-Queen, King-Queen).
The game is characterized by anticipation.
Tight-passive style of play is typical for inexperienced players. They are keen to see the next cards and raise only when their hand improves on the flop. If they raise post-flop, it’s a sign that a tight-passive opponent has a very strong composition and is likely to take the pot.
They don’t actually bluff.
Strategy for playing against a tight-passive opponent:
Such players are predictable, all their moves are at their fingertips, and a suitable combination can be assembled inexpensively – use this, use a bluff. Playing against them is simple and easy, and not very profitable.
Tight-Aggressive Playstyle (Tag)
Tight-aggressive players also prefer to play with strong hands, but raise more often preflop and put pressure on them to fold. Usually, he gets into the fight for the pot with excellent compositions. This style of play is not suitable for tournaments, as the rising blinds can eat up his entire stake before a strong hand arrives.
But, if the most experienced TAG knows how to diversify the game, use style and bluff from time to time, his moves are difficult to read. Since, competitors are used to the fact that a tight-aggressive player only plays with strong hands and is afraid to stay with weak cards. Such players are often found in online casinos or poker rooms.
Strategy for playing against the tight-brutal style of poker:
Such competitors are not the most profitable. The highest raises from them on the Turn and River are usually not a blast. Therefore, having incomprehensible compositions, it is better to give up.
Winning a decent pot against similar players can only be done with strong hands.
What can be done against this style? It is fundamental to identify patterns and patterns of actions. Knock tight-aggressive opponents out of the hand by pressing on weak spots.
Steal their blinds.
Loose Poker Style
A loose or free style of play can be called more creative. Loose players play more hands even with weaker card compositions.
Success with a loose style depends on the experience and level of competitors at the poker table. Skillful strategy maneuvering in similar play comes down to making low profits from tight players. The specialist must have a great feel and awareness of the game in order to achieve success in poker, using a loose style.
Loose-Passive Poker Style
A similar style is also referred to as an auto-call, as these players almost always call to see the next cards.
It is typical for inexperienced players or for those who are just having fun, not knowing the rules, acting without logic. Such actions are caused by the fact that a loose-passive player does not realize which compositions should be folded and which should be played, he is driven only by curiosity or faith in fortune.
He occasionally raises preflop, and if he does, it is unrealistic to track their pattern. He can respond to the Call haphazardly, with any composition, therefore it is very difficult to read his cards.
Having the strongest hand, he may not increase the stakes, thereby minimizing his own likely winnings, and from time to time, on the contrary, he uses a bluff.
Most of the time, raising them at the end of the betting still means great hands. From time to time they are lucky to take small pots. Out of ignorance, newcomers may be horrified by the activity of the answering machine.
Strategy For Playing Against A Loose-Passive Style
As you may have guessed, for poker experts, such opponents are more profitable, and are the main source of profit. They are always welcome. True, such a game can quickly get bored.
Position yourself to the left of loose-passive competitors at the table. Play a wider range of hands than usual and raise if other opponents tend to be tight. This will scare off other players, and being left with a similar player one on one, you will have a better chance of taking the pot, since your actions are unlikely to scare him off.
The opportunity to catch a suitable card will carry the loose-passive player to the last.
Do not show unnecessary anger, so as not to frighten off such a valuable enemy, on occasion, praise the compositions he has collected. In case of manifestation of anger on their part, the game should be continued only with really strong hands.
Loose – Brutal Poker Style (Lag)
Such competitors are more unsafe and tricky. They perfectly feel the game, understand every action, analyze the situation at the poker table, put strong pressure on opponents, sparkling bluffs and have their own unpredictable strategy.
Playing with an aggressive-loose opponent will provide you with an adrenaline rush, as his constant bluffing will make it hard for you to read the cards. He often raises preflop, even with a weak hand, sometimes alternating with a strong one.
An aggressively loose poker player can play the hand identically with a strong hand, or a weak composition. Waiting for another bluff from him, opponents often lose a decent share of the stack to LAG.
By mistake, some inexperienced players may mistake such a competitor for tilt. But it is rather difficult to beat these experts. With your strong hand, he suddenly folds, and when you think he is bluffing, he manages to break the pot even on a medium composition.
Similar behavior is due to the fact that an experienced aggressive-loose player closely studies their own competitors, reads cards professionally and predicts your actions.
How to play against a player with a loose-brutal style
In fact, not many people are capable of playing poker in an aggressive-loose style. Some weak competitors only try to adhere to this method of playing the game, and here it is fundamentally just right to recognize who is who.
Against a strong LAG, you should play just as hard and cunningly, in his own ways, since he is also not metal and is afraid of an attack. It is worth playing after his raises with decent hands, not succumbing to provocations.
If you have very strong hands, calling is a mistake. It is worth increasing the bet in order to prevent him from strengthening on the flop and seeing the next card for free. In addition, he most likely will not have a solid composition, and so, by chance you give him a chance to catch trips or doper and strengthen a weak pair.