Short Stack and Tournaments Strategies

The benefits of the short stack strategy

There is a minimum buy-in for every cash game and the reason for why poker companies keep it steady at the value of 20 big blinds is easy to understand. Those players who feel well inside their comfort zone at the tables wouldn't want to play against beginners who don't have the money to buy in, but want to experience the thrills. Everything would turn into a huge waste of time, so this limit was imposed and it is very likely that things won't change in the foreseeable future.

Playing short stack strategy implies the fact that one will only buy in for the lowest amount allowed, and there are a few benefits associated to this strategy. First of all you only risk the very minimum while playing at stakes that are slightly above your pay grade and still don't compromise your bankroll. The trick is to stay focused on the game and play a very tight poker, waiting for an opportunity to double up, leave the table and join another one.

Successful short stackers do this on a daily basis and although their strategy is infuriating for many players who buy-in for the full amount, at the end of the day profit is all that matters. The downside of this strategy is that when you are dealt high pockets or have the nuts on the river you will not rake huge pots as those who play deep stack would.

Can you afford to play tournaments?

Many poker players would instinctively answer affirmatively to the aforementioned question, but only a fraction of them are right to do so. There are two categories of players who enjoy spending time at online tables and those who regard no limit hold’em as nothing more than a hobby are those who favor these events. They have all the time in the world and since poker is simply a pastime, they don't need to cover their living expenses from what they win at the tables.

Those who are pursuing a career in this line of work, or at least are very concerned about standing above the line in terms of profits, should think twice before choosing tournaments over cash games. The variance is considerable in both live and online poker, but it is huge in tournaments because the payouts are massive but rare. If you don't have a consistent bankroll that enables you to support these expenses, you might not survive financially before collecting the first significant prizes.

The main problem with playing tournaments is that you need to wait a long period of time before seeing the return on investment and those who lack self-control are prone to go on tilt. Only a handful of players can stay profitable on the long run by playing only tournaments, because you must be willing to invest a lot of time and energy for potential gains. For more practical knowledge about poker, feel free to visit