Odds in poker: fundamental aspects to calculate them

Poker is a game of skill rather than chance. That is something you learn quickly and it is the first fact that makes any novice realize that poker is surrounded by myths. The odds in poker are elementary to make good decisions in each street, and everything depends on them, on the ones you have and the ones your opponents have.

Poker and odds: types of odds



In poker you have to know how to handle the odds, calculate them and differentiate them from each other. Because there are different types of odds and each of them has some particularities and different elements that influence them.

When talking about odds, we can refer to pot odds, implicit odds or implied odds, reverse implied odds... To calculate them, you must have certain mathematical skills, be familiar with the use of fractions, percentages and ratios, and have enough mental agility to be able to carry out these calculations without the conclusions you reach being reflected in your tells.

Calculating the odds can be done by following a simple mathematical formula: just add the chips in the pot plus the chips that have been placed in the pot in the current round. The result is divided by the chips to be paid, and we obtain the percentage of probability that we have of winning the pot. These are the pot odds.

We have talked about pot odds at length in Habwin before, explaining their main differences with other types of odds and the correct way to calculate them. Check out our post to learn more about pot odds!

Online poker odds: how they are calculated


Although poker odds calculations are not overly complicated, in online poker there are those who prefer to use an odds calculator (online poker usually prohibits the use of such tools) to learn how to deal with the numbers you need to keep track of to calculate the odds.

Although it is a useful tool, especially in simulators or rooms where you can practice without playing with real money, since it allows you to check if you have done the calculations properly or not, it is necessary to make the leap as soon as possible to the mental calculation of odds, which is what is really useful.

Any probability calculator in poker is likely to be banned in the main poker rooms in the world, a restriction that is nothing more than an impulse to improve mathematical skills and mental calculation.

Poker odds calculator: is it allowed to be used?


As we mentioned, their use may be restricted in certain competitions due to the advantage they provide. Normally, poker odds are calculated with a preflop calculator, which shows what are the theoretical odds of winning our hand before the community cards come out.

However, they are a fantastic study tool, ideal for working on our statistical skills and improving our calculation ability. Keep in mind that, even if you start with preflop calculators, the skills you develop to improve your mental calculation skills will help you to deal with ratios and percentages in other phases of the game. For example, when you have to calculate pot odds.

Once you have mastered the use of a preflop calculator, it would be advisable to dig deeper to learn how to improve in other aspects of poker. There is an infinite variety of poker calculators: range calculators, minimum success percentage calculators, MCI calculators... it all depends on where you focus your learning.

On an individual level and as a training tool, there is no problem using calculators. When you make the jump to competitions, things change. However, it is important that you consult the conditions of each platform regarding the use of software tools for poker, and make sure you do not incur in any irregularity.

Functions of calculators in online poker


A calculator not only allows you to work with odds, but also with other aspects related to the probabilities of your hand. It is convenient that during the different stages of training as a poker player you start making use of them, and gradually take off to start developing your skills with a real fire feeling, similar to the one you will find in official poker games.

A poker calculator can be used to correctly manage the equity, allowing us to know how many times we have to win a spot when an opponent bets us. Thus, we will know when to call and make the play our cushion to go for the victory.

Handling the equity can also help us to know our chances of winning the pot. If we multiply x4 the outs we need on the flop or turn, and do the same, but x2 on the river, we can get an idea.

Variance, one of the most difficult aspects of poker to assimilate, can also be used in calculators. Variance calculators are great for understanding the true influence of luck in poker over time. If we combine the variance data with the EV data in each phase, we can get an idea of the impact that luck has had on our liquidity.

Another important point: rake and rakeback. There are calculators that allow us to manage this data and allow us to have control over the impact it will have on our stack, both the part per bet that the table takes (rake) and the portion of that rake that is returned to the player (rakeback).

Want to know more about odds calculation? Don't miss it:

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