Top 5 Worst Beginner Mistakes in Poker

Poker strategy

Learning poker can be a tough experience when you are just starting to play the game. Once you know the basics, you can start improving your game. But you’re still just in the beginning of your poker career and you still have a long way to go to before you start playing well.

As a beginner, you may find yourself doing the same mistakes time and time again. When the same mistakes are done over and over again in your game on a regular basis, you start slowly noticing them and figuring out how to play avoid the mistakes.

But no worries. In this article, we present the five biggest mistakes that beginners often fall into, and we also provide some helpful links for them.

Here are the top 5 biggest mistakes for beginners:

  1. You play too many hands before the flop

This is the biggest mistake, and maybe the biggest one as all the decisions starts from preflop. Many new players play far too many hands before the flop. If you want to make money from poker, first thing to get right is your preflop hand selection, which ones to call or fold and which ones to 3-bet.

Overall, you should play only around 20-25% of all hands and fold the rest. You can easily google preflop chart which shows you recommended hand you should play on each position.

  1. You take your hands too far post flop

This mistake often starts from preflop when you play too many hands. And post flop you will have too many marginal hands like weak pair or one card straight draw which you choose to chase by calling.

Many players will play marginal hands all the way to river to see all the common card hoping they will hit and get paid. But in general, you should only continue after flop is you have a top pair or better or good draw like flush or two-way straight draw.

  1. You play more by feeling and less with odds and mathematics

Often beginner players will play a hand because they have a feeling about it. This does not belong to a good player habit as poker is a game of math where all the situations are based on probabilities.

So, you should only play a hand if you have the right odds to play it. It is better fold the hand if it does not have good enough odds even if you have good feeling about it. Overall, your goal in poker is to win money, not lose them, unless you just want to have fun and little thrill.

To learn more about odds and expected value check this page.

  1. Don’t let your emotions to control you

Poker can be very stressful game, especially when you lose few big hands in a row or get sucked out by your opponent when you were huge favorite to win the hand.

If you get stressed during game, you will start doing worse decision which just leads to losing more money. Therefore, it is very important to cool off when your emotions is getting better of you.

To learn more about controlling your emotions read how to start bossing your emotions.

  1. Thinking short term results rather than long term

A lot of players think after a losing hand that they should’ve played it differently. But in reality you should be more critical even if you lost the hand and try to figure out if you played the hand well, but were just unlucky and lost it because opponent just had better starting hand or maybe he just got lucky by the river.

If you get in an all-in situation on turn with 95% change, but you still end up losing. It just means in a long run you will win these types of spots 19 out of 20 times, and you will make money in the long run. This time you just got unlucky.

Short term thinking will make your emotions go wild and that leads you to make more bad decision in the poker table. For very advanced read, read thinking fast and slow book and you might understand your mind bit better after that.


Playing tight is right away and avoiding getting into bad spots where you have a middling hand and small change to win. Think every decision though what the best play is on each situation and think long term. Good luck in the tables.