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Multi-Tabling Tips

Multi tabling is something online poker can offer than no live poker room can. No matter how much you might want to, it just isn’t possible to occupy six tables at a time in a brick and mortar casino. With online poker, however, multi tabling is incredibly easy. You can play as many tables as you would like, whether it be just a few or 24 or at a time.

Playing one table, two tables, or 10 tables has its own unique advantages/disadvantages. Something that many players don’t consider is the fact that adding tables can actually result in diminishing returns. Where most multiplied ventures will end up producing multiplied production, too many tables can actually hinder your progress.

In addition to this, your development as a player could very easily be stunted if you are focusing on quantity more than you are on quality. Your goals as a poker player will play a large role in determining whether you are better off playing just a few tables or a whole bunch at once. Different players will be more well suited for different amounts of tables at a time, so it is key to not over (or under) extend your talents.

Multi tabling in cash games is very different than multi tabling in tournaments or even sit and gos. In a cash game you are going to be using the same general strategies at each table you are sitting at.

In tournaments, however, the blind levels and characteristics of any given event will be crucial in implementing the most ideal strategy. The hands that you play in the fifth blind level of an ultra turbo will inevitably be very different than what you do with A7 in the first stage of a deepstacked no blind increase tournament.

Focus is very important when playing tournaments, and this is something that multi tabling will reduce. There is a reason why the majority of tournament players have their schedules carefully planned out. They don’t want to waste a chance to play but they also don’t want to be playing a ton of different events at once. When it comes to cash games, though, you could play multiple tables at once and hardly notice the difference from one to the next. The type of game you are playing is certainly worth considering when you are deciding how to structure your sessions.

How to Multi Table

If you are planning on playing a number of tables at once, you should first make sure that you are comfortable. Don’t start off with 10 tables if your previous high was one or two. You might underestimate just how active 10 tables will force you to be. If you already have a grip on playing multiple tables, but just want to increase your productivity, take a look at the different ways to approach multi tabling.

Players can either cascade, tile, stack, or randomly assort the tables on their screen. How you set your tables up is your personal choice and there is no right or wrong way. For the most part, it is much better to be able to see all tables at once and in full view. It makes more sense and is usually easier to react when you can see all of the action, even if the tables are abnormally small. You could always cascade your tables so that they remain full size, but the action is more likely to surprise you and will not leave you with nearly as much time to think and react.

Try out the different forms of multi tabling and see which one is the most comfortable for you. If you are like the majority of players, the most comfortable set up will also be the most profitable.

Reducing Output

Many poker players fall into the trap of playing too many tables at once. Sure, your win rate might double from $14/hour to $28/hour when you go from one to two tables at a time, but it is unlikely to double again when you add a few more. You should only continue adding tables to the point where your maximum output is reached. If you make $48 per hour playing six tables, but only $34 per hour when you play 12, it only makes sense to revert back to six, eight, or ten tables, wherever you were the most profitable.

The other negative aspect involved in adding too many tables is the fact that it will not make you a better player. When you add more tables to your routine, you are going to be thinking a lot faster, but you won’t necessarily be thinking more clearly. It is much better to make five solid decisions in two minutes than it is to make 10 mediocre ones.

If you would prefer to increase your hourly rate in exchange for slowing down your overall growth as a poker player, multi tabling could very well be your best bet (if that is the case, check out this list of our favorite online poker sites for multi-tabling). If you hope to one day reach the higher limit games, however, it makes more sense to focus on playing fewer tables at a time so you can keep your win-rate up regardless of the competition.

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