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Cash Poker Bankroll Management Strategy

Real Money Poker Bankroll Management Strategy - GlobalWPT

Poker Bankroll Management Strategy 2024

Poker is a game that can take time to master, but with the right bankroll management strategy, players can increase their chances of success. In this article, we will discuss the key elements of a successful bankroll management strategy for online poker.

What is Bankroll Management

Bankroll management is the process of determining how much money you plan to spend playing poker and keeping track of your winnings and losses. To develop a successful bankroll management strategy, you need to define your poker playing style, determine your gaming frequency, and consider the type of game you will be playing.

Define Your Poker Playing Style

Newcomers to online poker may find it challenging to determine their playing style. However, as you gain more experience and confidence, you can adjust your bankroll accordingly. It is essential to play to your strengths and be mindful of what limits, types of games, and length of gaming sessions you feel comfortable with.

Gaming Frequency

Your gaming frequency will play a significant role in determining your bankroll management strategy. If you play regularly, you need to form a system to manage your bankroll effectively. Tools and software are available to help you keep track of your winnings and losses. Conversely, if you play less frequently, you may not require such a strict bankroll.

Types of Game

The type of game you play will also impact your bankroll management strategy. Single gaming sessions or cash games usually have a lower variance, meaning you can use smaller bankrolls. However, large tournaments have a far larger variance than cash games, and the stakes can increase dramatically. In speed tournaments or any special type of poker competition with faster rounds, the variance is extremely high, and you must keep a close eye on your bankroll.

The Stakes

The stakes at any online poker session are indicated by a buy-in or the big and small blind. For cash game players, there is no formal buy-in, and players can come into a session with as much money as they like. However, in tournaments, the games are generally more regulated, with strict buy-ins, and players will not be able to buy in again if they lose all their starting money. It is important to note that playing at higher stakes does not always require a ten times larger bankroll than lower stakes.

Measuring Wins

It is crucial to keep track of your winnings and measure your return on investment (ROI) to determine how much profit you are making. Cash game players can calculate their ROI over the course of 100 hands, and for tournament players, this is how much they win in the tournaments that they play regularly. Consistent sessions are essential to accurately measure winnings.


Determining your comfort level is one of the most important aspects of bankroll management. If you do not feel comfortable playing at higher stakes, do not play them regularly. It is best to ease your way into higher stakes in small increments rather than jumping straight in, as this can lead to stress and potentially burn through your winnings.

Cash Game Bankroll Management

Generally, cash game players should pick staked games where they can afford approximately from 20 to 50 buy-ins. This gives them ample gaming time in which they can win and build their bankroll.

Recommended starting bankrolls for different stakes:

Buy-inBlindsBankroll Range
$2$0.01/$0.02$40 to $100
$5$0.02/$0.05$100 to $250
$10$0.05/$0.10$200 to $500
$25$0.10/$0.25$500 to $1,250
$50$0.25/$0.50$1,000 to $2,500
$100$0.50/$1$2,000 to $5,000
$200$1/$2$4,000 to $10,000
$500$2/$5$10,000 to $25,000
$1,000$5/$10$20,000 to $50,000
$2,000$10/$20$40,000 to $100,000
$5,000$25/$50$100,000 to $200,000

A mere few cents in the blinds can drastically change the size of the recommended bankroll. Some players may opt to play for the lowest stakes, which is a good strategy for beginners. However, if you are planning to make money from poker, then you should go for bigger stakes. Remember, improving your game is priceless, and the better and more confident you get, the stronger chance you have of breaking into the higher category stakes. The best method is to aim for the largest recommended stakes within your bankroll. If you have some money to spare, you can try a shot at the bigger stakes. For example, a player with a budget of $400 can put aside $300 for $10 cash games and $100 for 4 $25 buy-ins.

Starting Bankroll for Tournaments

Tournaments have a much higher variance, and so the bankroll should be planned accordingly. Generally, your bankroll should be fifty times larger than the buy-in of the tournament. This will keep your feet firmly on the ground and also give you the chance to play at more tournaments.

Recommended starting bankrolls for different buy-ins:

Buy-inBankroll Range

The total buy-in should include the rebuys and extra cash that you will need to pump into the tournament. This is extremely important, as chasing a tournament and throwing in more cash may tip the balance of your bankroll. Calculating your winnings also becomes more tricky after you have spent more cash staying in the tournament. However, it is easier to keep track of your winnings at tournaments than it is at cash games. The prizes may be significantly larger, but you have to remember that you cannot jump in or leave whenever you feel like it.

Top Tips for Bankroll Management

Now that you have a grasp on budgets and stakes, you can start planning your sessions. Here are a few more tips to keep in mind.

Managing Expectations:

You should never get carried away when playing poker online. This is especially dangerous when you are on a winning roll and feel like you can clean the whole table. You should not expect to win every single game either, and sometimes the losing streaks will feel like they are endless. Keep your head and stick to your game plan, and try to gauge how much money you can win from experience.

Knowwhen to Quit:

Quitting while you are ahead is always a good idea. Keep track of your wins and losses and have a limit in mind. It is better to leave the table with a small win than to chase a loss until you are broke.

Stay Focused:

Do not get distracted while playing poker. Stay away from social media and other distractions that may reduce your concentration. Also, avoid playing too many tables at once as it may lead to poor decision-making.

Bankroll Discipline:

Stick to your bankroll management strategy. Do not play for stakes that exceed your budget, and do not chase losses by playing at higher stakes.

Improve your Game:

Continuously improving your skills and knowledge of the game will increase your chances of winning. Take advantage of training materials, books, and online courses to develop your poker strategy.

Having a solid bankroll management strategy is crucial to success in poker. It is important to pick the right stakes according to your budget and stick to your plan. Remember to manage your expectations, stay focused, and continuously improve your game.

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