In today’s article we talk about one of the biggest enemies of poker players: the tilt.
Experienced and suffered by many, tilt in poker is one of the worst feelings you can have, bringing disastrous consequences for the player. If you don’t know what tilt poker is, you can’t miss this post where we tell you what situations trigger it and how to avoid it.
What is poker tilt and why should it be avoided?
The term tilt refers to a state of frustration, anger or rage, extremely difficult to manage, and which triggers a series of bad decisions.
The player completely loses control over the game and does nothing but make mistakes in all his actions, which makes him even angrier, especially if he is a loose aggressive or loose passive player.
Thus, tilt is linked to emotions and is expressed in many different ways, the most frequent being aggressive betting and going to showdown with weak hands. Extreme bluffing is another sign that a player is in tilt.
This is the most common and widespread type of tilt poker, although we could also talk about the so-called passive tilt which refers to the timid and fearful attitude shown by a player after losing a hand and that prevents him from playing in a minimally aggressive way. Afraid of suffering a bad beat, he does not even bet when he has a good hand.
One of the great lessons of every good poker player is to learn to manage and avoid tilt, given the disastrous consequences it brings with it. There is only one end awaits a player in tilt if he stays in the game and is not able to control it: a 0 bankroll.
How does tilt arise and what type of players does it affect?
Tilt is related to losses. However, it is not the same to see how an opponent takes the pot with clearly winning cards against your pair of 5, than to take a pair K-K against J-8 on the flop with Q-3-2 and the turn and river are, respectively, 9-10.
This is what is known as bad beat, and it is one of the main responsible for the tilt in poker players. The bad beat is the play by which a player has a clearly winning hand against another that is not, goes all-in, but the turn and, especially, the river, give the victory to the player who had so far little chance of winning.
It is in these situations, in these terrible moments, that real poker players are born or made, when players learn to manage these moments and are not driven to act impulsively by the rage or helplessness of the situation.
In addition to the bad beat, the cooler is another of those plays that hide behind a player’s tilt.
Unlike the bad beat, we talk about cooler when a strong hand loses to a stronger one. What does this mean? That, even when playing with total mastery, one of the strong hands was destined to lose.
Both moves can affect players of any level. However, not everyone reacts in the same way or is equally vulnerable to the dreaded tilt. In this sense, there are two profiles especially susceptible to tilt: loose aggressive and loose passive profile.
Passive loose profile
This is the recreational profile par excellence. This type of player has two objectives: to have fun and to make money. The big difference between the objectives of a recreational profile and a professional profile is that the latter know how to play poker.
The recreational profile tends to overvalue his hands. In addition, when he leads a strong hand preflop, he goes all the way, regardless of the community cards on the table.
As far as betting is concerned, he tends to go the more hands the better, which wreaks havoc on his bankroll combined with some moments of bonanza that end early. Although it is true that he tends to call rather than raise. This type of profile tends to get “angry” with his opponents, so many of his actions are very emotional.
Loose aggressive profile
This profile shares with the previous one his inclination to go to many hands, but, unlike the passive loose, this player bets very strong.
This unpredictable and aggressive player is very fond of raise and re-raise, which tends to cow the rest of the players at the table. They don’t like to lose at all, and even less the amounts of money they bet, so they are very susceptible to tilt.
Professional tips to avoid tilt
Despite the frequent occurrence of this mental state of frustration and irritation, there are a series of practices that you can carry out to avoid tilt.
What type of player are you? Have you identified with the two profiles we have described? If so, put yourself on alert.
Identifying yourself with one or the other profile does not mean that you are doomed to suffer tilt in every poker game, but you should be aware of certain signs that show that you are tilt. For example: after a loss, you play hands compulsively; you bet aggressively and make mistake after mistake.
If you experience any of these symptoms, withdraw from the game.
There is no other secret: if you are going to let yourself be carried away by your impulses, quit the game and think about whether poker is for you.
Learn that sometimes you win and sometimes you lose
Even the best poker players have been beaten once in their lives. And they will probably lose again in the future. But that doesn’t mean they will ruin the whole game because of a loss.
In poker, as in life, sometimes you win and sometimes you lose, and even when you lose you can take some positives from it.
Play low limits or don’t play some hand
If you feel that you are in tilt, the best thing to do would be to withdraw a few hands from the game or, if you prefer, you can continue playing at lower limits so as not to lose too much money.
Remember that it is very difficult to manage the array of emotions that tilt triggers, so be consistent with it.
Analyze how it affects you and if you can control it and maybe you can end up finding the formula that can turn you into a great poker player, or at least, you will be a person who enjoys the tables and this game in a healthy and balanced way.