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5 Common Traits of Losing Poker Players

There are more losers in poker than there are winners. That’s just a fact of life. However, there are some things we can watch out for to try and prevent ourselves from becoming a long time losing player.

Today, we will cover five common traits that you will find in losing players. Players may have one, two, or all of the traits listed below.

They Blame the Results on Others Bad Play

I don’t even have to explain this one for someone to come to your mind. There are players out there that will constantly berate other players for their play rather than examine their own. An example I use frequently happened in a Limit Hold’em game I played a few years back.

Pre-flop, five players limped into the pot. The big blind was a tight player who likely would not raise. I look down to Q-6 of clubs and limp in as well. I flop a flush. By the river, the board has a club flush on it with the ace and king. I have the nuts. Two players are in the pot with me at this point and the pot is capped.

I take down the pot and a player with A-J with the jack of clubs is complaining that I limped in with Q-6. This is the type of player that will be a long-term loser. Had he raised with his ace pre-flop, I would have folded my weak holding. With the potential of six limpers though, I called.

Poker Players Yelling

Some players will blame everyone but themselves for their play.

They Justify Bad Calls

Playing off of my previous example, players that regularly justify bad calls will be long term losers as well. Had the A-J raised and I called because multiple players were in the pot, that would have been a horrible call since I was calling two bets cold.

We are going to make the occasional bad call as a poker player, and we may even find a way to justify it. However, when that becomes a pattern, that’s when it becomes a problem. Players that justify bad calls often are those that are regularly walking away a loser.

They Chase Too Many Draws

A common sign of a bad player is that they chase way too many straight and flush draws. Often, they are chasing on the hopes of taking down a big pot and fail to consider pot odds. If you have the odds to chase a draw, that’s fine. However, chasing draws for the sake of catching lucky is a losing strategy.

If you notice that a player chases down hands-on every board that presents a draw, these are players to exploit as they will have other leaks as well.

They Smoke or Have Other Addictions

A common trait you will see in losing players is that they smoke cigarettes. If they don’t smoke cigarettes, they have some other form of serious addiction such as alcohol abuse or drugs. These players do have the necessary focus needed to be world-class poker players because part of them is focused on their addiction.

Smoking Poker Players

Thankfully most live casinos don’t allow smoking at the tables. So they have to regularly leave the game.

Many of these players can’t even play a session without having to partake. How often do you see a player get up from the table for a smoke break? How many drinks has that play downed since they’ve started playing? Did they leave somewhat sober and come back stoned? If they can’t stay clear at the tables, they will never be a winning player.

They Don’t Study

Back in the day, players could get by with learning how to play at the tables. That’s just not good enough in the modern game of poker. There are too many good players and the game is constantly evolving.

Players that don’t spend time studying the game will fall behind and get stuck at certain stakes. In some cases, their game will erode to the point where they can’t keep themselves in any game. Think about poker players in your life. Where are the players at who don’t study? Are they still playing?

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