Bet Sizing for Bluffs

The art of Bet Sizing is being able to determine the best amount to bet, based upon the situation of the hand, in order to get an opponent to either call or fold. Bet sizing plays a very important role in being able to successfully bluff at a pot. The major factor that you should be using to size your bets for a bluff is the size of the pot. When you make a bet to bluff at a pot you will win the pot some times and lose it other times. Because of this you want to make the size of your bet, when you are bluffing, as small as you think will possibly win the pot. If you bet half of the pot on the Turn your bluff does not need to be successful as often as if you had bet the entire pot amount. For example if you bet $50 to bluff at a $100 pot then you will make a profit even if this bluff only works half of the time while betting the $100 that is in the pot will only break even for you if you only win with the bluff half of the time.

Bet Sizing for a Semi Bluff

A Semi Bluff is when you have a drawing hand and you bet as if you had a made hand already. The semi bluff is a very effective way to bluff because if you do get called, you still have a chance to make a hand. And if you do make the hand it will be concealed by the fact that you bet like you had a hand before the hand was even possible.

Bet Sizing and Fold Equity When Bluffing

Fold Equity is the percentage of times that an opponent will fold to your bet times your gain in pot equity. The smaller the amount of your betting attempt to bluff at the pot the easier it is for you opponent to call. If you bet $20 in to a $100 pot then your opponent will only need to win by calling 1 out of every 5 times that they are in this situation. This will let your opponent call with a much wider range of hands than if you had bet the amount of the pot.

Bet Sizing for Bluffs in Tournament Play

Fold equity is an especially acute problem in no limit tournament play when you are becoming short stacked. So in no limit tournament play, if you find yourself starting to get low on chips, you need to start looking for an opportunity to win a pot by bluffing before you get so low on chips that you do not have enough to cause other players to fold.

Bet Sizing for Bluffs Summary

Bet sizing is an extremely important skill for bluffing and requires you to have other poker skills such as your understanding of your opponent’s patterns that will help you to determine what they might be holding. Other factors will also apply to your bet sizing for bluffs such as your position at the table and the table image that you have developed over the course of the session. If you have been playing with a tight image then you may be able to buy the pot with a much smaller bet than if you have been very active and have recently been caught trying to bluff. There’s no point being able to bet size if you dont have a good poker bonus so get one now.

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