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early position in poker

Keep Your Head Above Water In The Small Blind Pre-Flop

When you’re in the early position in poker, especially the earliest, aka small blind, your hand can be tricky.

That’s because you’re at a distinct disadvantage. You have to act before everyone else, which is no fun. It’s the exact opposite to when you’re in late position, where it seems like everything is on your side.

You’ve got to be more disciplined and on top of your game than ever. Whether you’re playing online at bet365 (bet365 poker bonus code) or another online poker room, or you’re living it up on a poker holiday or having a few friends over for a poker party, this always remains true.

We’re here to give you some great tips on how to make this position work for you pre-flop.

At least you’re late to act pre-flop

The silver lining of the small blind position is that you’re late to act pre-flop. The action starts after the big blind and then comes around to you. You’re second last to make up your mind what to do.

That puts you in a good spot to steal blinds pre-flop. Especially because the only person you’re really up against here is the player in the big blind. If you’re playing against an average player, or better yet a passive one, chances are you can scare them off with something like a 3x blind raise. But we only recommend doing this if you have an okay hand.

If the big blind has aggressive tendencies, tighten the range of hands you’re willing to play.

Sometimes folding makes sense in an early position in poker

Some poker players are of the attitude that when you’re in, you’re in. If you’ve paid into the pot with your forced bet of the small blind, then maybe you should take it to the end?

That is not so, my friend. There are lots of times when folding is the best option, and this is frequently the case in an early position in poker. If your hand isn’t all that hot, simply wave your small blind chips goodbye and fold.

Never limp in pre-flop with a small blind

Maybe through reading the first few tips you’ve already gathered this, but limping in pre-flop when you’re in small blind is DUMB. Because you’re so disadvantaged in your early position in poker games, particularly after the flop, you’ve lost control.

The only thing that makes sense is to do a strong raise or fold. Nothing in between. Make your decision and stick with it.

Speaking of strong, 3-bets pre-flop can be smart in an early position in poker

If you’re an aggressive player anyway, 3-betting is probably already in your wheelhouse of regular moves on the felt.

But if you’re not, it’s something you should try out next time you’re in the small blind. And here’s why.

  1. This is a way to reduce your opponents. The players with so-so hands with naturally filter out. The plus side of this is that on the flop, turn and river, you have fewer people up against you
  2. It’s also a great opportunity to build the pot, getting maximum value from your play
  3. If done correctly, the pre-flop early position in poker 3-bet can be an excellent bluffing technique


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