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# Best way to start thinking in ranges

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So- what do do people think is the best way to learn this? I understand it is an essential skill for any decent poker player. I still have trouble getting my head around it though. I just keep saying to myself, "well, he raised EP so he's prob got AK-AQ, 99+" or something. But people do all sorts of crazy things online. I've read in books what ranges one is supposed to play from where to open but online stuff is just all over the map. On my (lame) site I play at, there is a TON of limping, from EP, MP, often 3-4 limpers at full ring. If I'm on the button and raise, lots of them usually call, sometimes all of them. I just have such a hard time ranging them when they limp-call and there like 3 or 4 or them.

I can't just sit and put hands and ranges into pokerstove (I use pro poker tools FWIW) there's just too many. Is they some way to learn the most common ranges and common equities vs.? There must be. How did some of the pros learn this? Help!

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In terms of opening ranges, the homework I've given students/horses in the past to work on this is to figure out what a 5%, 10%, 15%,...50% opening range looks like. Once you've got that down, start thinking about how those ranges may/may not change from EP to MP to LP. Then, compare the RFI of a player to the ranges and positions you've constructed and it'll give you a general idea of his preflop opening range. It's never going to be exact, but it does give you some intuition. Over time, you can see where you're right/wrong and make the necessary adjustments.

With respect to limping, it's a little harder, but the same exercise can work. What's the raising range for each person? What's the limping range? What's the limp/fold vs limp/call range? etc.

With respect too many people flatting behind you or limp/calling, two options: 1) flat behind with speculative hands to see a lot of flops and win pots postflop when people will overvalue draws and top pair; 2) make your raise size bigger and limit it to the top of your range and get max value from your stronger hands.

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Well first you should consider getting a HUD. If you don't know what people's tendencies are then you can't begin to think about a range for them.

When you have an idea of how they play, then you can think more about what they are raising from what position. If it's not possible to have a HUD, there are general things you can assume when watching them. For example:

If they are limp calling a lot then they are most likely loose passive fish, and you can assume they have very wide ranges. Pokerstove is a must have so you can see what a 50% range looks like, a 30% range, a 20% range and a 10% range. FWIW, [AQo+, 99+] is a 5.1% (very tight) range.

Then you need to look at all the actions they have taken in the hand that led them to this point, and you can better narrow down the hands he might play that way.

Some boards they will play hands different ways, so you just need to go through what you think they will play this way, and you go from there.

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Freaking awesome info. Is there such thing as a standard GTO opening range for the different positions? Could this be a place to start? Just wondering.

No HUD possible for me (USA, Mac, etc…)

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No there is not a GTO opening range because GTO requires that you play the hand perfectly post flop as well. A decent opening range is about 50% on the button, 30% in CO, 25% in HJ, and then about 20% from MP and 15% from EP. This also depends on stack sizes and many other factors such as what type of players you have at the table, your image, the stage of the tourney, and the ability of the other players.

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No there is not a GTO opening range because GTO requires that you play the hand perfectly post flop as well. A decent opening range is about 50% on the button, 30% in CO, 25% in HJ, and then about 20% from MP and 15% from EP. This also depends on stack sizes and many other factors such as what type of players you have at the table, your image, the stage of the tourney, and the ability of the other players.

well this certainly depends if we're talking about cash or mtts...opening 15% from utg in cash will likely lead to you getting slaughtered

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true, I assumed we were talking MTT's here.

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Anyone have a gtochart for 9 max

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my thoughts. first be careful where you play online. bovada does have super users. ive listened to a guy say he would win the next 5 hands with rags or not and guess what? if you suspect a super user stop using the site. ok anyways poker.. ranges... ok you know what a vig is? its the player pushing the action and how much. you only get that vig away from him when you call or come over the top. thats where the range comes in. your gonna see a lot of limping in cards because players dont have anything to get confrontational with. and there mostly afraid to bluff it pf.you get good by catching the player acting like he has the vig when he doesnt have the value to back it up. you follolw? ok you limp 22-10's, pose a little vig with jj-kk but pose it as a lure, something like a 4-5bb. you might take a shove on you might not. aa gets played with 60% + right up front, demand committment from that hand and dont let donk hands catch up. i just went thru ur premium range. try bluffing the vig more with your rags like 89o pf when in position to take the vig which means your first to flash some action. if you get called no big deal because your never showing those bums unless you get made by luck. but dont call a raise or go into the turn with the idea of further fudging, thats only bleeding off ur stack. .politely fold and show ur rags.... then when you have the value players who saw you make turd pie and make them eat it will want your head. those 5x bets will make their mouth water. you follow?

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