The limping. Another of the poker concepts that you have to know to improve the game and take that baggage that differentiates a good player from a professional player. In the vast world of poker strategy and tactics, limping is one of the most controversial and contentious.
Because? Because, for reasons that we will reveal later, limping is not recommended. But let’s go step by step. First, we are going to tell you what is limping in poker, what does in poker limping consist of, why it should be a good idea limping in poker and how often you should do it.
Therefore, we will answer some important questions. Should you ever limp in poker, if it is that bad? Why is limping bad in poker, if so many players do that? Let’s see.
What is limping in poker?
When in poker “limping” comes up finally, it refers to calling the minimum bet required to access a hand during the preflop betting round. In other words, limping is when a player pays only the blind or ante, instead of deciding to raise.
Limps are usually done by players who don’t know what to do, or who don’t have enough experience to play without committing a large part of their stack.
Why is limping bad in poker?
In principle there is nothing wrong with limping in poker, but it is inadvisable in some cases. When it is said that limping is bad in poker, it is because it is a technique that suffers from a worrying lack of initial aggressiveness, which automatically places the player at a clear disadvantage.
This lack of aggressiveness also means that the player can hardly exert any influence on the hand and, therefore, does not have the option to control the size of the pot. If the bet is not raised, the player is exposed to other players with mediocre hands being able to enter the hand at a lower price, and this will affect their chances of winning.
Also, limping tends to be a reflection of a weak and even marginal hand. In the eyes of a professional player, if you limp, you’ll be portrayed as a player with a weak hand, and they’ll do everything they can to exploit that weakness on subsequent streets.
Another important point: when limping, multiple players are more likely to see the flop, decreasing your chances of winning with bad hands. The pot odds stop being favorable to you, you get less value for your investment and thus a series of catastrophic misfortunes that can turn everything against you.
Lack of initial aggressiveness means little influence on the hand. Therefore, your initiative will be diminished from the start. This will prevent you from taking control of the hand and putting the desired pressure on the rest of the players. Raising the ante what allows you is to steal pots and detect weaknesses in the hands of your opponents, making you start to be respected, so keep that in mind.
You can find yourself having to make difficult decisions in late rounds. Limping even can get you stuck in a big pot, with a hand that isn’t strong enough to bear the cost of entering. And that’s not good.
Should you ever limp in poker?
Although limping in poker is risky and has significant handicaps, there are obviously times when the option will be on the table and plausible. The million-dollar question is when to limp. Let’s see three examples of situations in which limping can be an option to consider:
- When playing against very aggressive players. If you get into a table where the opponents are extremely aggressive, limping can be useful in order to trap them and widen your profit margin when they bet.
- When betting on a bluff. If you are going to base your game on deceiving the rest, limping can come in handy when, for example, you have raised bets in previous hands. If you have a strong hand and limp, you will catch more than one by surprise. This will confuse them and push them to play somewhat erratically.
- When playing with low value hands. It rarely happens, but you may want to see the flop at very little cost when playing in early position with specific hands that are low value. Limping then becomes an option to consider.
In summary: limping is one more strategy that you can use as a resource in certain cases, but there are so many risks that you run by limping that it is often inadvisable to do so. Analyze the situation very well and decide what is the best way to face your game.