Online Action Poker

The Value of Bluffing

It’s one of the greatest moves you can make at the poker table when playing with the likes of, but if you aren’t fully aware of what it takes to pull off a successful bluff then it can also be one of the most embarrassing moves. Understanding the conditions necessary to dupe your opponent into giving you the pot is a process identical to any other poker skill and in this article we’re going to outline the basics.


Before we delve into what it takes to pull off a devious bluff, we need to clear up one major misconception regarding its usage. Many novices will often watch a professional poker player and assuming that they bluffing 75% of the time and try to emulate them at the table. However, this simply isn’t true and it’s a sure way for you to lose a lot of money. Bluffing should only be a small part of your arsenal and only used when the conditions are right, not because you feel like it.


The mechanics behind an undetectable bluff are simple: play the hand as if you have the nuts. Maintaining your regular betting patterns is the best way to disguise a bluff. For example, if you always raise 3X the big blind pre-flop with good hands, then make sure you do the same with your bluffs.

Similarly, if you always bet 2/3 of the pot when you flop a strong hand, then follow this line when you don’t have a strong hand. Sticking to the same betting lines will make it tough for your opponent to know when you’re bluffing and when you’re value betting, thus, making it more likely you’ll win the pot in either scenario.


Sizing up when to bluff requires you to assess three key factors: your opponent/s, how many people are in the pot and the dynamics of the board. In general, it’s best to bluff a tight player because they will fold, on average, more hands than a loose player. Beyond this, you should never look to bluff a pot where more than two people involved. The reason for this is that it’s much more likely someone will have a decent hand if there are more people in the pot.

Finally, you should look to bluff on scary boards. For example, if you’re against a tight player whom you think has flopped top pair, then you could consider bluffing them if there are a lot of draws possible. Indeed, when bluffing, you want to represent the widest range of hands possible because it will give your opponent much more to worry about.