Online Poker Bankroll Management

Many poker players – the winning ones are included – fail to do a proper online poker bankroll management and burn their bankroll, which translates into ruining weeks or even months of successful poker play.

The statistics are showing that on average 90% of the players that have bankroll management problems at live poker, have the same problems to keep a stable balance at online poker rooms too.

It’s a surprising thing that a very good number of successful online poker players are finding it difficult to manage their bankroll and have to suffer a lot because they can’t handle this problem.

The live poker players that manage to win at the live poker tables think that they will be able to do the same thing at an online poker. Unfortunately the reality is totally different. In order to be successful at an online poker room you need a lot more discipline and control compared to live poker. You will have less time to react, the players are stronger even at lower limits and there will be no faces to look at to read the other players.

Play within your bankroll possibilities

In case you really want to make some money online by playing poker, one of the most important bankroll management concepts is to always play within your bankroll possibilities.
In order to better understand this bankroll management rule we are going to present you with the Gambler’s Ruin Mathematical Theorem. Many people are not fans of “math” but this one is really interesting. The concept is very simple, two gamblers are put to play a 0-sum game (like flipping a coin – here the chances of winning are 50% and the win/loss rate is going to be 0%) one against the other. One of the two players is going to have a finite bankroll, while the other will have an infinite bankroll. After a large number of flipping the coin, the player with a finite bankroll is going to go broke.

The same concept can be applied in the world of online poker; you will be the player with the finite bankroll, while you will be competing against the rest of the world. So this means that if poker was a 0-sum game, you would probably go broke.

In case you are good online poker player and manage to win, you can expect to see a positive return on your play at the tables. But in order to do that you must definitely have enough money in your bankroll in order to be able to make the swings and variance is irrelevant on the long term.

If you have a bankroll which is large enough to do that it will seem to be infinite, even if you know it’s finite. This is why you must stick to the standard bankroll management rule of using the maximum amount of 5% of your bankroll to play at a time at one table. And in case you are a really cautious person you will have to drop that percentage to 1-2%. If you don’t have to worry about going broke your chances of winning will improve.

Concentrate on the game

Once you start playing at the real cash tables, each and every decision and pot matters. You must avoid making even the smallest mistake, since that is going to cost you money.
And the more money you lose because of the mistakes you make, the harder it’s going to get to generate profits.

Try to limit the distractions. Some players might be able to play while watching a movie, with absolutely no problem, however most people must concentrate on one thing only to be successful. Depending on your current multi tasking capabilities, you will have to select the proper environment in which you will be playing.

Also make sure that you don’t play out of boredom. If you are bored you are probably having a boring session of online poker and under these circumstances, the chances that you will be making mistakes are pretty high.

Avoid the Tilt

The number one bankroll killer in the world of online poker is: TILT!

The tilt appears during bad beats and can drive a player wild by making some crazy bets, raises and calls. The tilt is usually different from one person to another and it can come from absolutely anywhere. Even if it’s almost impossible to avoid the tilt, you must do your best to do it.

The professional poker players like Phil Ivey for example, are seeing the tilt phenomenon rarely. And when this happens, the game that they play is almost the same.

However we suggest that during the moments, when you start seeing the tilt, the best way to avoid it is to simply log off.

By following all these online poker rules you will never go broke. But you must make sure that in case you break just one of them, but you keep the others intact, your bankroll will have to suffer a lot.