There is a lot to learn about the game of Texas Holdem. This article is going to go over some of the basics for players who are new to the game and things that they should be looking to do when they play. As you learn more about the game, you can expand on these very basic, beginning strategies.
#1 – Play tight. Until you understand the game better, it is always better to play a somewhat solid, predictable game. The hands you play should be in the upper range of hands for the position you are playing from. For example, you shouldn't be playing a hand like K-10 in early position or a hand like pocket deuces when the pot has been raised.
#2 – Use position. Position is probably the biggest advantage you can have in Texas Holdem. The more information you have available to you, the better your decisions will be. When you play hands from the blinds, or from early position, you are working from a disadvantage because post-flop players will be acting after you and can react to the choices that you make. However, when you have position, you are the one who has the advantage. For example, let's say you have pocket 6s and are on the button and called a raise from a middle position player. The flop comes J-7-2 and your opponent checks to you. If you had been out of position, you probably would have checked and your opponent would bet to test you. Because you have position, however, now it is your opponent who must defer to you. If they have a hand like A-K or A-Q or even a hand like pocket 8s, they will probably release their hand if you make a bet if they check, or raise if they bet.
#3 – Be consistent with your betting. Early on when you are starting out in your Texas Holdem career, it is best that you make the same size bets whenever you are betting. The reason is it gives less information to your opponents and makes you harder to read. If you vary your bets, there is a chance a good, experienced player will be able to pick up on any patterns you might have.
#4 – Bet big. While small ball poker is all the rage and is probably the preferred style of play, until you are comfortable playing post-flop poker you should be making your opponents pay a premium to play pots with you. Make your pre-flop raises larger than your opponent’s typical raise. If they are opening for 3 big blinds, make your opener 5 big blinds. Make your flop bets big enough to put your opponent to the test. Don't bet half the pot... instead bet around the size of the pot.
The Main Holdem Strategy Index: The Great Game of Holdem