Poker Articles

Poker Statistics: ATS – how often the opponent tries to steal the blinds

ATS (Attempt to steal) indicator shows how often the opponent tries to steal the blinds from positions CO (Cut – off position) and BTN (button or dealer’s position). Here should be taken into account only the cases when there is a raise from these positions in case there were no limps or raises before. The number of the raises should be considered with respect to the number of the cases when no one had entered the pot before this player. ATS indicator will help you to determine the possible range of steal hands and to take decision with what hand you can attempt a re – steal. In order to understand your opponent better, you need to know the Raise first indicator relative to the positions BTN, CO, and SB (Small blind position).

In micro limit games it is not recommended to attempt a lot of steals and the ATS indicator should be within 15 % but in higher limit games steals are very important and the ATS indicator may become even 40 %.


Poker Statistics: PFR – the percentage of cases when the opponent raises

PFR (pre – flop raise) shows what is the percentage of hands raised by your opponent during the pre – flop. It does not include cases when somebody else raises and he calls. It does not include limp – re- raise cases either. PFR is a very important indicator to know always about it is really a good idea. Besides, except the general PFR you should also consider the PFR per position. Sometimes in late positions the opponent plays loose (for instance, he often steals the blinds) and therefore his general PFR is very high but in early positions he can play very tight and you need to consider that. In low limit games you can see another situation, where players prefer to raise exactly when they are in early positions. It is really very difficult to find a logical explanation to this but it is necessary to pay attention. Another indicator very close to PFR is Raise First and it shows the percentage of the cases when a player makes raises in case no one had entered the pot (there were no limpers and re – raises).

For a short stack player the PFR should be no more than 1 % lower than the VPIP i.e. technically, there are no calls and you enter the game with a raise. For a player with a large stack, the PFR should be about 2/3 of the VPIP. VPIP and PFR together help you to get a general idea what kind of player you’re playing against – is he a tight or a loose player, is he aggressive or a passive one. Thanks to these two indicators, you can determine the range of the hands of your opponents. This will help you to evaluate the strength of your opponents during the pre – flop as well as to evaluate the situations during the post flop.


Poker Statistics: VPIP – the percentage of the hands played

VPIP (Voluntarily put money in pot, sometimes indicated as VP$IP) shows what percentage of hands is voluntarily played by the opponent during the pre – flop. This indicator includes all hands when the opponent enters with a call i.e. limp or call – raise, or raises himself. It does not include the game during the blinds since they are not bets made voluntarily.

For a tight – aggressive short stack player when the table is big this indicator should be within 8 to 12 %. Very tight players usually are considered the ones with VPIP less than 20 % and very loose players the ones with VPIP more than 40 %. In other words, the higher the percentage, the looser are players. In case you have VPIP less than 7 %, that means you play too careful and that will reduce your profit. If you play with a large stack, your VPIP should increase with about 5 %. If you play against 5 – 6 players, your VPIP should increase with 3 or 4 % as well.


Statistics in poker

We start today a new series of short articles about one of the main topic concerning any poker game – statistics.

Using a game statistics in poker is one of the most important things in order to win. Statistics can be used in two ways: first, your own statistics is very important instrument in order to improve your own game, to analyze your own mistakes or successful moves; second, the statistics relative to your opponents is also important since it helps you to make right decisions.

Let’s see the main statistic indicators and how are they going to help you.


Basic Draw Poker – Lesson #8: General conclusions

Ok, the lessons have finally ended and you probably have understood that playing poker is not that easy :-). But what have you really learnt from this brief course?

  • You can stay in the game in three cases only: If you believe that your combination is higher than the combinations of other players; if the pot odds are in your favor; if you have quite a big chance to improve your combination after drawing cards.
  • In most cases, you should open the game and respond to the bets of other players only when your chance to win is more than 50%. If you don’t have a pair or, better yet, 4 cards to a straight or flush, you need to fold without hesitation, your chances to beat the other players or to form a higher combination is minimal. Remember that in most cases, wins the conservative player, who is ready to lose some of the initial bets and enter the game with a strong hand.
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