So perhaps you’re sick of the micros? Or maybe you’ve played a few poker freerolls and had some success, or won your last poker tournament home game?
Now the fun and potentially lucrative multi-table tournament variety of Texas Holdem poker may have caught your interest. And like most things in life, you want to be the best, as fast as possible!
When it comes to online poker tournament strategy there are many paths to take, and most potential winners fall by the wayside due to misinformation or not knowing the steps to reach the top.
Well, this article takes a holistic look at what it takes in the online tournament poker world to achieve success, listing the key steps to help layout a path for you to climb the ladder from MTT poker small fish, to online tournament poker shark!
Often overlooked, pre-game is one of the most important parts of a winning MTT players strategy – if you aren’t prepared for a tournament you will rarely go far. So let’s go through a few aspects of the pre-game strategy to get set up for tournament success.
Getting Set-up For Success In The Online Tournament World
It’s definitely okay to start out in the world of online poker testing the waters. Cash games, SNG poker and multi-table tournaments all have different appeal, as discussed in this interesting article. Whatever your game of choice, when you decide it’s time to level-up and move beyond being a low stakes fish, you need to create an environment that will allow you to perform optimally.
Poker tournaments are a lot of fun, competing mentally with opponents for a shot at big prizes can be a rush, especially when you’re the last one standing. There’s no feeling quite like it in poker.
But to wade through frequently large player fields takes time, so you need to have dedicated time to play, and study (as we’ll cover in a moment). Online MTT’s often take around 5 or more hours to complete so prepare for a long poker tournament as described by ship-itpoker.
Ideally, you won’t have other commitments going on around you whilst you play so you can focus on your tournament tables. And aren’t playing so late you don’t mind busting that last tournament because it means you can get some sleep and be ready to work tomorrow.
Make sure you have the time available to commit. Most people can find the time – I’ve helped poker students from all walks of life, a doctor, butcher, housewife, student, truck driver, beekeeper, to name but a few. If you’re passionate about poker, find the time to commit. And then surround yourself with the right tools.
Get poker tracking software like PokerTracker. Download Equilab so you can calculate equities vs your opponents. And when you’re ready to take the step, consider getting some advanced poker hand analysis tools like PIOSolver.
And since you’re now treating poker more seriously, go for that better playing set-up. Have a comfortable mouse and chair. Don’t use a PC that’s a dinosaur, or anything else that can hold you back from achieving great things in the world of online tournament poker!
Finally, you should determine your bankroll requirements for the type of game you are going to be playing. You can check out MTT bankroll requirements over a TopPokerValue.com.
Free MTT Poker Training:
The Underused MTT Skills Essential For Success
- 5 Day Email MTT Poker Training Course By Poker Pro Kelvin “Acesup” Beattie
- 3 Key Skills That Will Take Your MTT Poker Game To A New Level
- 1.5 Hours Of Professional Poker Training
Poker Mindset For Multi-table Tournament Poker.
All set-up for playing multiple tables and ready to go, now the fun begins!
Challenge yourself competing in regular online poker tournaments. But find the right balance between play and study. Unfortunately, this is where players often hit a wall.
The 3 common barriers effecting a players commitment to improving their poker ability are:
- social tendencies
Wait what? Winning?!
Winning frequently incorrectly self-assures players of their ability, and this causes them to cast aside training, and consistently shot for the big bucks, gobbling up their bankroll in the process.
It’s the luck element of poker deceiving players. For some, providing them with good fortune early on in their career, leaving them with an overinflated opinion of their ability, and sense of entitlement in the poker world.
This is closely related to the second point, social dispositions.
In the current world, most things come easily to us. And we frequently receive praise and compliments as we’re growing up from those around us. So it’s easy for people when they take to the poker virtual felt, to have unrealistic expectations.
And then when things don’t go their way, and in the case of losing, some deflect that negative result, simply attributing it to bad luck or some other factor. That’s much easier mentally to accept than assaulting our ego with the notion that those sitting around us at the poker table were superior players.
Tournament poker can be frustrating, as this article discusses, and thwart with variance. It’s important to focus on the skill of the game and repeatedly making profitable decisions, and finding solace when you lose or were unlucky in the fact you made the right plays.
You can always check your win-rate by position (BB rate per 100 hands or BB/100 as it’s displayed in poker tracking software) to gauge your ability. By repeatedly making good choices at the table, in some cases sooner and others later, but in time the results will come to show your poker proficiency as a winning player.
Take full responsibility for your poker life. Show an unyielding persistence to achieve a high level of play, without being dissuaded by short-term negative results. Keep an unbiased and open mind about your play, always seeking ways to improve and pushing forward.
You’re not alone, even for top pros, the mental game of poker can be challenging. Subtle tilt or anxiety, or potentially subtle forms of self-sabotage could be preventing a poker player from taking the next step forward and ultimately reaching their full potential.
Having personally done these, I can vouch for their value in improving your mindset and therefore win-rate. Don’t under-estimate mindset, a positive clear mind is one that is ready to operate optimally and bring about success.
Learn About ICM
ICM stands for ‘Independent Chip Model’ and represents how the value of chips change over time as a tournament progresses. Unlike in cash games where the value of each chip is fixed, the value of a chip in a tournament reduces over time as nobody can win 100% of the prize pool even if you accumulate all the chips in play.
ICM is a very important concept when it comes to online poker tournaments. And we’ll talk more about it below. But you can never learn too much about it so read this article by thepokerbank.com and icmpoker.com.
Stack Size – Learn About M and Stop Using BB As A Reference
One of the major differences between tournament poker and cash game poker is that in tournament poker the blinds and antes (chips that players must put into the pot each hand before receiving their cards) increase periodically, leading to accelerated action and quicker bust-outs.
Knowing how to adjust your play based on how big or small your stack is in relation to the blinds is crucial in tournament poker. The two units most commonly used to measure stacks in tournaments are “big blinds” and “M”. Big blinds are calculated simply by taking your chip stack and dividing it by the big blind (the “blind” bet that the player two to the left of the “dealer button” must put in each hand).
For example, at blinds of 10/20, with a stack of 2000 chips, you have 100 big blinds (“100BB”). At blinds of 500/1000 with a stack of 10,000 you have a 10BB stack.
“M”, while more complicated to calculate, is a better way of measuring your stack because it takes into account the antes, which become significant in the later stages of a tournament. Most tournaments start out with only a small and big blind paid by the players left and two to the left of the button, but eventually antes come into play and must be put into the pot by every player dealt into the hand.
To calculate M, take your chip stack and divide it by the amount of chips put into the pot each round. For example, with a stack of 10,000 chips with blinds of 100/200 and an ante of 25, at a 9-handed poker table, the cost of the blinds and antes each round is 525 (100+200+(25×9)). 10,000 divided by 525 is 19.05, so you would say you had an “M of 19” or “M19”.
Here is a short video explaining the use of M in poker, and another important related topic, SPR or stack-to-pot ratio:
So how do you use this knowledge now that you know how to calculate your M? For a start, good players adjust the way they play depending on how deep their stack is in relation to the blinds and antes. Here’s a few guidelines:
- With an M below 5, you should be either moving all-in or folding. Don’t just call raises, go all-in over the top of them. And don’t just raise yourself when you are first in the pot. Move all-in or fold. Your stack is short so it’s time to take a stand!
- With an M between 6 and 15, limit the number of “speculative” hands you play as your stack size reduces. Small pocket pairs and suited connectors like pocket threes or five-six suited play better with a deep stack. These hands won’t flop big very often, so when they do you want to have a healthy stack so you can take full advantage of hitting big and have a chance to collect a nice pot. When you have a medium or short stack you don’t have the “implied odds” of being able to win a big pot with speculative hands. Recreational players constantly playing speculative hands with a short stack simply dwindle their chips away. Then when they finally do connect strongly with the flop, they can only win a limited number of chips anyway. A very unprofitable situation in the long-run.
- With an M of above 15, you can be playing more hands. Mixing up your play by including a lot of speculative hands to make your game less predictable. And giving yourself the chance to win more pots.
We can see some fairly standard opening ranges from the middle position in the image above. The M20 stack size range on the right has more speculative hands like small pairs and suited connectors worked into it. Deeper stacks provide players with more playability. You can see more flops. Potentially calling re-raises preflop since you’ll still have plenty of chips left behind to play with post-flop and won’t be committed to the pot like you might be if you called a re-raise with a short stack, investing too many of your chips. Deeper stacks also allow for more betting and calling post-flop. Ultimately, providing players the chance to win bigger pots which makes a hand like 67 suited quite profitable.
Now that you know how to measure your stack in M, and how you can adjust your play based on that, you’re on your way to winning your next poker tournament! Let’s move on to some more key strategy you’ll need to know.
Poker Strategy: Opponent Types
Poker is all about adjusting to your opponent. How you adjust to your opponent will depend on how they themselves play. Here are a few descriptions of opponent types and how to play against them:
- Tight Weak opponents play a limited number of hands and when they do they are afraid to put in chips without the nuts (best possible hand) or close to it. Attack these players and watch them fold away their stack, but when they show commitment to the pot, give up as they’ll frequently have the goods.
- Loose Passive opponents play a lot of hands but play them passively by just limping and calling. When you have a strong hand versus these opponents, make sure to “value bet” their pants off. They want to stick along for the ride and see all their hands to showdown, so make them pay for that. Don’t bother trying to bluff them as they will call with any piece of cheese. These opponents are prevalent in the live cash game arena and lower stakes online tournaments.
- Tight Aggressive opponents, or “TAGs” play quality starting hands and play them aggressively. You might be able to steal their blinds preflop as they are waiting for solid high-card hands and pocket pairs. Some may quickly fold when you bet on the flop when they miss the board. However, keep in mind they start out in the hand with strong holdings so be careful when they fight for the pot. Some well-timed bluffs on low boards they are less likely to have connected strongly with can work quite well.
- Loose Aggressive or “LAG” opponents play a lot of hands and tend to play them fast. This is the playing style of many strong winning players. Trapping with stronger holdings can really work well against them. However often times, you’ll just have to make a hand against them and hold on until your skill level is high enough that you are able to see through them and recognize when they have a hand or when they are just trying to run you over.
- Overly LAG players can be called “maniacs”. These are the players playing every hand and betting big, or just pushing all in preflop every hand for fun. Can you figure out what you need to do beat them? Yep, all you need is a decent hand and a bit of luck against these lunatics!
For more on poker playing styles, check out this article by UltimatePokerCoaching.
Early Stage Poker Tournament Strategy
The early stages of a tournament can play a lot like a cash game since the stacks are so deep. Put your deep stack to work by identifying the players at your table. Players’ raise and bet sizes. Frequency they enter the pot, and type of hands they play and get to showdown with can be a great indicator as to their style and skill level.
Target the fun players at the table, looking to play more pots against them. They’ll be making some common mistakes or potentially huge blunders you can capitalize on to get a good start in the tournament.
Be a little more wary against the stronger players at your table. Play solid and look to play more pots in position, especially on the button. This brings us to the importance of position advantage.
A critical concept at all times, but especially when stacks are deep. You want to focus on playing more hands in position. Achieve this by opening and re-raising (3betting) wider form the later positions. These articles by HowToPlayPokerInfo and ThePokerBank have good information on position. Here’s a short video which highlights the importance of positional advantage:
So your position at the table is one of the biggest influences over the amount of hands you can profitably play. The deep stack (M20+) ranges below clearly demonstrate how significant this is.
The early position range on the left includes only 11% of hands, whilst the late position button range covers 56% of starting hands! By playing in position, we get the advantage of seeing our opponents act first. Which affords us more information about the likely strength of their hand. Moreover, the player in position can dictate the action more, since they always have the opportunity to put in an extra bet or raise. This is extra important in the early stages since whilst the blinds are small and stacks are deep, they’ll be a lot of post-flop play.
Although the above ranges represent open raising ranges, that is, when you’re first to enter the pot, good players also do a lot of calling in position. Especially from the button position since you’re guaranteed to be the last to act post-flop. Go ahead an call raises with a fairly wide range in this situation. This helps set-up profitable opportunities for you to add chips to your stack. But exactly how wide a range can we call with? The 3-6 and 5-10 rules of thumb can be a useful indicator.
- 3-6 and 5-10 rules – Important calculations for profitable early stage speculating. Check out this video for more details:
Whilst the 3-6 and 5-10 rules are a good guide, especially against weaker opponents, be careful you don’t get too loose against the pros at the table. At least, not unless your skill level is proficient in such match-ups. When calling a players raise, another important factor to take into account is the gap concept.
- Gap concept: This concept is simply that it takes a better hand to call a raise than it does to make the first raise. For example, you may raise with 50% of hands from the button but only call with 10-15% of hands vs a raise. Check out this video for more on the gap concept:
Here are some other concepts which are important in early stage play which we cover in detail in the Road To Success Course, included in the tutorial below.
- Target, aim, fire, principle – Find the weak players and then make sure you pull the trigger!
- Maximizing and minimizing – Examples are used to demonstrate times when it’s profitable to go for 3 streets of value compared to times when an opponent’s calling range becomes narrow and checking to control the size of the pot is wise.
- Barreling and check-raising – Use these 2 key early stage weapons (discussed in a comprehensive tutorial in the course).
- Early mindset – The no fear approach to the earlier tournament levels and attacking fit or fold mentality.
Get access now to all of this material in our full 60 minute lesson by using one of the unlock buttons below:
Middle Stage Poker Tournament Strategy
Current poker tournament blind structures are fairly fast. So you’ll quickly approach the pivotal middle stage of a tournament. By this period, the antes have kicked in and as a result, your aggression should also kick up another level. This is because each player posting an ante each hand results in more starting in the pot to fight for. However, there is still a long way to go and you don’t want to become too aggressive and needlessly risk your tournament life.
Unlike the early stage where stacks are level for the most part, by the mid-stage varying stack sizes will start to be created around the table as players win and lose pots. Monitoring your opponents’ stacks, and adjusting your play is crucial to this period of the tournament. So let’s break down the strategies you should be using with each of the stack sizes in middle stage play:
Playing with a big stack
A mistake a lot of beginners make when they get their hands on a big stack is calling short stack all-ins too loose. Thinking the can ‘afford to gamble’. Unless you’re playing a Knockout Tournament where a prize is awarded for busting a player, play each hand as profitably as possible and don’t get carried away trying to run over the table or bust opponents.
Although you can gain leverage and should at times be looking to apply pressure, you still need to pick your spots. Having a big stack also means you can be patient. The blinds and antes are a relatively small price for you to pay. So mix patience with well-timed attacks. Such as stealing tight player’s blinds.
Putting pressure on tight medium stacks that have started to appear around the table is also a good way to continue to add to your stack. These players will figure they still have time – they can fold and wait for a better hand to get their money in and hence you often have a lot of fold equity verse these stacks. Well timed re-raises might make them feel as though they need to commit too many of their chips to continue in the hand and they’ll often yield under the pressure.
On the other hand, against short stacks, you should be less inclined to overextend your advantage. These players are getting desperate and will be looking to take a chance to double up. They will take more risk than a medium stacked player because they are going to be blinded out of the tournament if they don’t make a move soon.
When you clash with other bigger stacks, take heed in the early stage play principles. Speculate but pick your targets, and try to play hands with the positional advantage.
Playing with a medium stack
As a medium stack, the pressure is starting to mount as the blinds and antes are starting to eat away at your stack. This means you’ll want to start looking to accumulate chips fairly aggressively. However, since you aren’t deep stacked, you can’t necessarily see flops with a wide range. So what do we do? Stealing and re-stealing is the name of the game in this situation.
Steal from tight players and look to re-steal from loose players. That is, if you suspect a player is stealing the blinds with a wide range, you can re-raise. With a medium stack, a re-raise or 3bet as it’s called, generally puts opponents in a tricky spot. They know they can’t call too wide because stacks aren’t deep, and if they continue they’ll be a lot of chips in the pot with not a lot of chips left to win in the effective stack remaining (effective stack just means the smallest stack, since a shorter stack can’t win all of a bigger stacks chips we call the shorter stack the effective stack). This often forces players to back down, relinquishing their hand allowing you to add some nice pots to your stack. Often without even seeing a flop.
This could mean putting your stack at risk. Though with a big stack you’d mostly only put your stack at risk preflop with the premium holdings of aces and kings, with a medium stack you don’t have as much to risk and need to be actively looking to accumulate chips before you become a short stack. So if your opponent brings it in for a raise from the button, and hence they likely hold a wide range, you might move all-in from the big blind with M9 when holding a hand like pocket sevens or ace-ten.
Here are some other important concepts to learn about in regards to stack size, covered in the video below.
- Hand Planning and SPR – Strategy considerations in regards to mid-stage SPRs and a quick formula for calculating likely SPRs.
- Hand Value Shift – See how speculating can be less viable short and how high card value increases. Also, learn how some earlier speculative hands might be used based on raw equity to attack aggressive or short-stacked opponents.
- Observation and HUD Usage – The 10 HUD Commandments highlight key data to collect, and then see this put to use to exploit specific opponents.
- Default Play – We talk about how to take advantage of population tendencies.
- Exploitative Play – See how even a small opponent weakness can cause a massive shift to the best response.
- Equilibrium – Learn more about this balanced state of play in varying scenarios, including 1. With starting ranges, 2. Blind play, 3. Three and four betting scenarios with M12 and M20 effective stacks.
Use one of the unlock buttons below to gain access to this 40 minute tournament lesson, Part 1 on Middle Stage Tournament Strategy:
Playing with a short stack
Short stack play results in a lot more all-ins, and less post-flop play. Although you can often still call from the big blind getting a good price, that won’t be the case when it comes to calling raises from other positions. You’ll be so short, calling will be investing so much of your stack the better option is to simply move all in or fold.
Since there are fewer flops seen with a short stack, play is often times very mathematical. When it comes to re-raising an opponent all in preflop, the key steps are;
- Anticipating your opponents range (how often they will be able to call).
- Deciding how well your hand fairs against that range (your hands’ equity).
Knowledge of this balance of fold equity and showdown equity is crucial with a short stack. So for example, if you hold pocket twos at M6 in the small blind, this could be enough to jam a loose opponent’s late position raise. If they fold you add some much-needed chips to your stack. If they call you get a good shot to double up.
However, if it’s a tight player from middle position, now we expect to get called frequently since they have more combinations of strong holdings. So we have less fold equity. Furthermore, when they do call, pocket two’s figures to be in fairly bad shape against their strong range of hands they can have. So the result is less fold equity and less showdown equity, a bad combination for trying to re-raise all in with a medium stack.
In much the same way, fold equity also plays a key role when it comes to utilizing the opportunity to raise first in the pot. As a short stack, this will usually just involve moving all in. An all-in or fold strategy has the advantage of oftentimes picking-up the pot without seeing a showdown when your opponents all fold, or if called you have the chance to double up and get back into a better position to do well in the tournament with more chips to play with.
The factors to consider are your stack size and position. A shorter stack and fewer players behind mean more hands can profitably be jammed. Moving all in first in the pot is a simple as following a mathematical chart. Many people use a BB chart, but this isn’t optimal. The best chart can be found over at PokerNerve.com in the Road to Success Course, along with following crucial short stack strategies;
- Fold Equity Erosion – Prevent stack loss. Learn to maintain your stack and work it back up to a big stack.
- Super short and short – Exactly when and with what range to jam with.
- ABC’s – Position, Hand Strength and Player Information – The ABC factors to making decisions at the table are still important, in some cases more so with a shorter stack.
- Jam Range – Profitable short stack jamming hands. Including a super quick guide to profitable short stack play.
- Vigorish – Great technique Dan Harrington has had success using that is good to implement against very tight players.
Late Stage MTT Strategy
The all-important stage of being on the cusp of getting paid is called the money bubble. Naturally being so close to receiving a share of the prize pool, the hands you might play can alter, in some cases drastically. To better understand this effect, let’s further discuss ICM and the concept of the bubble.
The Poker Bubble
The bubble comes about because of the non-linearity of chips in tournaments. This is due to the varying payouts. If you’re in a tournament where 36 get paid, with 37 players remaining, and with a relatively short stack you call all-in figuring you’re likely flipping (fifty-fifty) with an opponent, this is a disaster.
Whilst if you were by far the shortest stack it might not be as bad, it’s even more of a disaster if the player next to you was trying to hang on and make it into the money with a tiny stack.
As an example of how extreme the bubble can be, this video presents folding pocket aces preflop as the right play! Keep in mind this is a satellite, so the top place finishers all receive the same prize – Entry into a bigger tournament. Check it out;
So depending on how close you are to making the money, and the size of the stacks around you, different stacks clashing have different bubble extremes. Or bubble factor as it’s referred to. This video provides an in-depth analysis of what’s going on in the bubble from a mathematical perspective.
As we mentioned earlier, the ICM model helps determine the optimal strategy to take. This method takes into account the varying bubble factors in play. Knowledge of ICM and bubble factor helps strong players accumulate a lot of chips and get set-up to win.
A lot of amateur players will be overly cautious in the bubble, placing a huge emphasis on just getting paid. Causing them to make some ridiculously tight folds to reach the money, or jump up the payout ladder. Look to put pressure on these opponent types with raises and re-raises. It’s a primetime for some serious chip accumulation.
Here in this short video, we see a couple of examples. Firstly opponents do battle in the Pokerstars big $162 a popular online tournament, then there’s a demonstration of taking full advantage of the bubble period by anticipating opponents play.
The trick is to have no fear whilst at the same time taking into account the ICM considerations. And this mindset is paramout at the final table.
Final Table Strategy
Busting out of the tournament just before the final table is reached is also often referred to as the final table bubble. Players will sometimes be desperate to make the final table, where they’ll have the chance to score some big cash and maybe even win an online tournament.
The money moves up much quicker when on the final table so people have more of a reason to try to survive for as long as possible. This again often provides an opportunity to pick-up some easy pots. Target the weaker players at the table, and the tight opponent’s trying to outlast each other.
You should have by this stage of the tournament, gathered some important information on your opponents. You’ll likely have played a lot of hands with most of your competitors at the table which will help you make better decisions. Online you can even open and observe the remaining tables as you get close to the final table, to try to develop and hone some reads (don’t forget to take notes on poker sites with a note-taking option).
Stack size as always plays a key role in the final table dynamics. A big stack can often be wielded as a weapon. Especially when it comes to pressuring the middling stacks. Middling size stacks have a high bubble factor. That is, they have a lot to lose since they should be able to outlast the shorter stacks and receive a bigger payout.
Here’s a couple of interesting hands. Including an example of gaining good leverage using stack size at the final table. As well as an example of how crucial decisions can be at the final table with large payouts at stake;
That final hand is certainly a great example of using a high bubble factor to assert a lot of pressure, resulting in a considerable chip gain helping the player to take this tournament down.
With this type of mentality, being offensively minded, you’ll capitalize on opportunities and soon find yourself battling heads-up for the title!
Heads Up Poker Strategy
Being heads-up means that you will have to post either the big or small blind every hand. This drives action since players already have money invested in the pot each hand.
You’ll often have position, being the button every second hand as the small blind player. This means you can use an aggressive strategy and raise a lot. However, when you butt heads with other aggressive types, often mixing in a lot of limps is useful. You don’t mind seeing a lot of flops, since you’ll be last to act each street.
As the big blind player, you’ll want to be defending a lot with raises and calls since your opponent will be raising with a wide range in position. The result is usually a lot of post-flop play. Providing stacks are deep enough. With shorter stacks, they’ll be frequent all-ins since they’ll only be one player holding a random hand to beat. Making fold equity high.
Lots of players leave themselves ill-prepared for heads-up clashes. Which is unfortunate given it’s when the largest money is at stake! But players often don’t have a lot of heads-up experience. After all, it’s not every day you play a tournament that you manage to make it down to the final two. Try to get some experience by spending some time learning about the dynamics of heads-up play. This article is a great place to start – heads up poker strategy, which explains some of the main adjustments good players look out for when playing heads up.
Competent heads-up players have set ranges they’ve developed, but look to adjust as new information is learned about their opponent. And that’s really the key. With one player left to focus on, it’s really about finding ways to gain an edge. If your opponent folds too much preflop, blind them out. If they play too tight post-flop, continuation bet a lot to pick up a lot of pots. If they’re a maniac, wait until you pick-up a couple of nice hands and have a chance to deliver crushing blows. Keep adjusting as you discover your opponents tendencies. And anticipate how they might be adjusting to what you’re doing. Now we’re really playing the great game of Texas Holdem poker! Hopefully, you can play better than your opponents and win, and score a lot of cash!
Now here’s a few final thoughts and tips for those who intend to be winners…
In tournament poker the quicker you start training your mind, the better. Often people are susceptible to developing bad habits that can take time to break later.
But wait, I don’t have the bankroll to invest in poker strategy?
Decide if you are playing for fun, or to win. If it’s the later, then having a bankroll is meaningless without studying quality poker strategy material. If you had the money to throw down on an online poker site, then you should be able to take some of that money and invest it in your poker education. You need to do whatever you can to invest in strategy. Start off small with some relevant poker books for a cheap an effective way to improve your game, but then move on to more advanced methods such as poker courses and studying. Just like studying for any profession, it all begins with learning the basic strategy and then working your way up to understanding the advanced techniques.
Your goal is winning as much as possible from poker, don’t procrastinate from achieving that goal or you’ll be costing yourself time and money. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking absorbing various free content is moving forward, or you’ll end up like a mouse on treadmill.
Quality not quantity is where the value is in learning online tournament poker strategy.
Guided learning is a good way to go because it maximizes the time you spend learning, whilst also forcing players to confront the barriers that must be pushed past in order to achieve a high level of skill and success.
For example, the Road to Success MTT Poker Course starts out basic and doesn’t confuse players with difficult tactics. It lays the foundation, allowing players to established strong fundamentals. Then more advanced strategy is easily absorbed later.
It teaches core tournament poker strategy like hand ranges to play, positional concepts, adjusting to player type, stack size considerations and bubble and ICM factors. Then more refined strategies like lead betting, over betting and advanced check-raising tactics and much much more to arm you with the latest tactics to gain an edge over your opponents.
At the completion of the course, you’ll be armed with poker tournament strategy and tactics you can use to achieve MTT tournament success.