Taking Notes

When playing online poker it’s essential that you gain as much information on your opponents as possible. If you don’t recognize players at your table it is tough to know if they are a ’shark’ or a ’donkey’. Aside from checking their stats online the only other option of getting to know how they play is to take notes on them. If you are a player that frequently plays the same tournaments, sit n gos, or cash games then odds are that you will play the same players along the way. It is very important that you take notes on these players, because it is very likely that they have some notes on you. Every online poker room has the option for players to take notes, and I can’t really think of an excuse for players not to jot down some notes on their opponents.

It’s very important for players to take notes on their opponents for multiple reasons. For instance if you are seeing the same player at the table over the course of time and you are not sure how he/she plays then you are missing out on some valuable information. You should takes notes on this player every time you sit down to play one another. Is this particular player a tight a player or a maniac with chips? Do they play aggressively when they have drawing hands, or do they become a calling station when they are holding a drawing hand? Does this player raise frequently when he is on the button, or does he/she play conservative around the blinds? Having this information can pay huge dividends when you find yourself playing a particular player. You can use this information every time you play this individual, and you can really use the information to exploit their play. If he’s tight you know to play cautious, if they are loose then you can open your range against them, or you can 3-bet the player if they attack the blinds at an alarming rate. Taking notes on a player will definitely help you play better poker in the long run.

Another reason to take notes on players is knowing how they like to play certain hands. Do they like to slow play their big hands or are they trying to get chips into the pot when there holding monsters. Do they frequently use the continuation bet in their play, or do they slow down when they miss the flop. This information is essential that can come in handy. If you see a player make an unorthodox play or they play a hand that rings an alarm in your head then take a second to make a note on that player. If they make an odd play during that particular tournament or cash game session then it’s very likely they will use a similar play again. I suggest observing the table and take some notes on players that you see regularly see. Keep taking notes on these individuals and watch your play improve against these players as time goes on. It may take sometime to see the results of note taking, but it will pay huge dividends at time goes on. Good luck at the tables my friends.

Craig Fleck

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