You might enjoy playing poker without ever considering the mathematical aspect of the game. Yet this is something that the top players take into account. What is poker math all about, and should you use it?
The pot odds
The starting point for understanding poker math is with the pot odds. This is a calculation that we can make to work out our chances of winning the money that is in the pot for a certain game. While this might sound impossible to do in a card game, we can calculate it using the things that we know.
To work out the pot odds, you need to know how many outs you have and the chances of an out being dealt. An out is simply a card that will turn your hand into a winner. You also need to know how much you could win if the out is dealt and you win the hand.
You will find charts online that work out the exact odds of you getting the out card you need. There is still an element of luck involved, but by knowing the figures involved, you can make a better attempt at choosing wisely.
The expected value
The expected value (EV) is a term used to describe how much you should expect to win or lose on a certain poker play. This means that you will be able to see whether it is worth it to make a call, bet, raise, and so on.
You won’t win money every time you carry out one of these actions. Also, when you do win, the amount you win won’t be the same on each occasion. Therefore, the secret is to choose the plays that give you the highest amount of EV.
This means that you work out the probability of each of the different possible outcomes. The most commonly used example to explain this more clearly is that of flipping a coin. If you win more for it landing on heads than you lose when it lands on tails, the EV is going to be positive, with you winning the difference between the values every two flips.
Do you need to use poker math?
Top players will use poker math to work out how to use their bankroll most effectively. They know that they won’t win every game, but they want to give themselves the best possible chance of coming out ahead, lowering the possibility of bad luck costing them money.
What if you just want to find the best NJ online Casino, such as Resorts Casino, to play Texas Hold ’Em variants and other types of online poker for fun? In this case, you can easily start playing without worrying about any of these calculations.
It just comes down to how you want to play and what your interests are. If you love math, then you will enjoy working with poker math even if you don’t consider yourself to be a serious poker player. Others may decide to just concentrate on the other aspects of the game that they most enjoy.