Making money in real estate means Location! Location! Location! In poker, making money means Position! Position! Position! The position you are sitting in relation to everyone else should be a big deciding factor in whether you play a hand or not.
An example would be you are playing a $10/$20 game and there are 8 players to act behind you.
You decide to play a marginal hand and bet $10. Two more players call everyone else folds but the last guy who raises. Now you have to commit another $10 to play a marginal hand with a player raising and two others likely calling, not a good position to be in. If you knew a raise was coming you would have folded, saving $10 and that is why position is so important.
A full Texas Hold’em table is broken up into three sections. The first three seats to the left of the big blind are in early position. Since being in early position means that most of the poker table has yet to play, make sure you are only playing the premium starting hands.
The next three positions at the table are called the middle position. In the middle position you have some information about the hands already in play (Early position) and there is not a lot of players left behind you. You can afford to loosen your starting hand requirements and play more hands in this position.
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The last two positions are said to be in late position. One is called the “cutoff”, that is the player before the dealer and the other is the “button” and that is the player with the dealer button in front of them. After these players the blinds are left but those positions have a strategy beyond this article.
The late position is prime real estate at the poker table. Most everyone has acted in front of you, there is a very little chance of someone raising behind you and you can now play a wide range of starting hands.
These are a very general guideline to help you improve you poker starting hand selection based on your position. Play tight early and generally open up your hand selection the later the position is. One of the ways to instantly improve your poker game is to pay attention to what position you are at the poker table.