Loose players are the most ideal type of opponent. Not only
do they not know what they are doing, but they are also putting
their money up for grabs in almost every pot. There are some
players who play badly but are also quite tight, but these
opponents aren’t going to be nearly as profitable as the loose
A loose player is defined as someone who likes to see a
lot of flops, turns, and rivers. Don’t confuse loose players
with aggressive players, because they are not one in the same.
An aggressive player will make raises and smart plays, while a
loose player simply calls away their stack time and time again.
Taking advantages of these players is easy, and you should adopt
a strategy that caters to their individual weaknesses.
A loose player is going to play the same way in almost every
pot. These players aren’t prone to switching up their game on a
dime. This is due to the fact that they tend to not really care.
A loose player is the very definition of a recreational opponent,
because they just want to have fun. They feel like calling off
tons of bets is the way that they are going to get the most
enjoyment out of their time playing poker. While this is
obviously going to be wildly unprofitable, no one can argue that
seeing lots of hands is the most exciting way to play poker.
Loose players can be frustrating when you are unable to make
hands, but they are incredibly easy to dominate once you manage
to hit just a few fortunate hands.
How to Not Play Against Loose Players
The worst thing that you can do when facing a loose player is
to try and beat them at their own game. You shouldn’t ever try
to bluff a player out of a pot when they have no intention of
folding. Bluffing a calling station is the equivalent of
lighting money on fire. As obvious as it sounds that you should
not bluff someone who never folds, some players will continue to
fire bullets if only in hope that they can get that one big
Continuation bets and double barrels are two plays that should be in any winning
players’ repertoire. When it comes to facing loose opponents,
however, these two particular skills should be tossed out the
window. Continuation bets only work when you are up against
someone who is capable of laying down a hand when they missed.
Loose players will often times continue to call even if they
have nothing at all, as illogical as this might sound. Double
barrels are even worse than continuation bets because you will
be putting even more money on the line, which is inevitably
going to be lost. All that you need to do is remember that
betting without a made hand is a terrible strategy if you are
attempting to beat a loose opponent.
Profiting From Loose Players
The very downfall of loose players is what will open up your
opportunity to capitalize and walk away with significant
profits. The one thing about facing loose players is that you
can’t win if you don’t have a strong hand. Since these players
are never going to fold to your aggression, the only thing that
you can do is to wait for a made hand that can be used to
extract maximum value. This is both very easy and very difficult
at the same time. If you are running well and continue to make
strong hands, you are going to be printing money. If you miss
what seems like every flop, you’ll be as frustrated as
possible. The good thing about loose players, though, is that
they require minimal risk in exchange for sizable gains.
Pre-flop play against loose players calls for playing in lots
of pots. While this may seem like backwards strategy given that
you should avoid pots where you don’t have a made hand, it
actually makes perfect sense. The key to this equation is
getting involved for a small amount of money. You should be
looking to play as many pots as possible in limped or single
raised situations. In fact, it’s beyond profitable to even call
blind against a loose player if you can get in without a raise.
Even though you are seldom going to wind up with a big hand, the
times that you do get lucky will far outweigh the times where
you miss and lose 1 big blind.
Extracting Max Value
It’s one thing to understand that you need to beat loose
players by waiting for good hands, but it’s another skill
altogether to know how to make the most money possible. The
easiest way to do this is by simply winning more from an
unusually loose player than you would otherwise be able to make
from an average opponent. Since loose players can’t help but to
call off bets in just about every spot, you’ll be able to take
advantage of this by squeezing out extra bets both pre-flop and
If you would normally make an open raise pre-flop to
4x the big blind, consider bumping that raise to 5x or 6x if you
feel like the loose player is going to call. Even though this
type of exploitation is going to be known to you, the majority
of loose players will never pick up on it. Many poker players
assume the best in their opponents, but the truth is that most
don’t pay much attention to
bet sizing at all. Raising your
standard bet sizes pre-flop is the first step to extracting
maximum value from your loose opponents.
In post-flop situations, the same advice applies as is given
pre-flop play. You already know that you should be shutting
down when you miss the board, but you should be firing on all
cylinders when you have a real hand. Make bets that are close to
the size of the pot on the flop, do the same on the turn, and
shove on the river. These are the types of plays that would be
disastrous and would dilute all value from your big hands in
most other pots, but they will be just perfect against a loose
Loose players love two things: getting lucky and hitting a
big hand or calling you down with nothing at all. Even if they
have to call off a sizable portion of their stack for a shot at
a gut shot straight, they will give it a shot. Anyone can
appreciate the thrill of hitting that gut shot, but it’s
clearly going to bleed any player dry over the long run. Use the
beyond sub-par approach to poker to make a lot of easy money.
Loose players are an absolute dream of an opponent, so you need
to ensure that you aren’t leaving any money on the table when
you are fortunate enough to be playing with one.
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