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Poker Experiments To Expand Your Game

by Alex Fitzgerald |  Published: Jan 10, 2024


Alex Fitzgerald credit: PokerGO Get a Free Training Package at

You’re not going to grow as a poker player if you do the same things every single day. You need to experiment to expand your game.

What experiments should you try on the felt? Try one of these five challenges and see what it does for you. My students have reported great success from trying these methods.

1. Go Two Weeks Without Bluffing

One of my students recently accomplished this challenge, and they were surprised that they were still getting paid on their bets by the end.

No one is paying attention at the table. You don’t need to run bluffs to get paid off. Most people hate folding any decent hand they flopped. They’ll find a way to justify how “this time is different.”

I’ve gone five hours while barely playing a hand in $10,000 events. Then, I triple barrel top pair for three streets versus someone.

Do you think how tight I’ve played all day gets people to fold? Nope. They still call off their stacks with their second pairs. It’s wild. If there is a missed flush draw out there, that’s immediately what they want to put you on.

You can take advantage of how people don’t want to fold anymore by bluffing less. To realize how little you need to bluff, go for two weeks without running a single bluff. I bet you’ll be stunned at how much action you still get.

2. Try Three Triple Barrel Bluffs

Once you realize how tight you can play, switch things up with three triple barrel bluffs.

Most people are afraid to run triple barrel bluffs. This means there’s a huge tool in their game they don’t have.

Start with a basic situation. Raise and get the big blind to call you. When the big blind calls you out of position you can rule out A-Q+ and 10-10+, because they most likely would have three-bet those hands preflop.

Let the board come with some high cards. Say A-Q-X. On this board, you can fire multiple streets if you believe they’re disciplined enough to fold one pair.

On a similar note, you can also focus on boards with flush draws and straight draws. Say the board comes 9Diamond Suit 6Diamond Suit 4Spade Suit. They check to you, you bet, and they call you.

You know on this board they most likely would have raised with two pair and sets, because there’s so many flush draws and straight draws out there. They would want to simultaneously protect their hand and get value from it.

You can make a safe assumption on this board that your opponent’s range is capped at one pair. It’s most likely a nine or a six, because there are less combinations of pocket pairs to begin with and they’d likely have three-bet most of them preflop. You can fire on the turn and river if it’s bad for a nine or a six.

Try three triple barrel bluffs to get outside of your game. Budget for them. They’re high variance, but you need to be capable of a big bluff if you want to move up in the game.

3. Three-bet The Loose Player Every Single Time. Aggravate Someone.

If there’s someone at your table who is opening constantly, then it’s time for you to get in their face.

Three-bet them every single time they open. Do it with the J-5 suited. Do it with the 8-4 suited. Do it with anything remotely playable.

Most people are too afraid of being criticized at the table. I get it. It doesn’t feel good to have an entire table pissed at you. Most people in life don’t want that kind of attention.

However, we have to get over this if we want to play attacking poker. If someone is opening too many hands, then you want to corner them every time they are going to be out of position.

You don’t need much of a hand versus them. It’s similar to when you raise on the button and the big blind flats you. You don’t need much of a hand versus the big blind because they’re calling you with such a garbage wide range. You can exploit that range easily because it flops so many mediocre pairs that can’t stand huge bets.

You should take it personally when someone keeps opening when you’re to their left on the button, cutoff, or hijack. Why do they think they can steal your steal position from you? Why do they open garbage like you won’t do anything about it? Do they really think you’re that much of a pushover?

Let’s see what they have. For one session, let’s play in position and play hard versus this clown. Let’s see if they actually have the tools to defend all their terrible opens.

4. Don’t Hero Call For Two Weeks

Most of your opponents don’t bluff enough. I’ve done thousands of private lessons over the last decade. I’ve worked with people from 60 different countries. I’ve worked with people of all ages and backgrounds. I can tell you the hardest thing to teach anyone is how to bluff.

The problem with bluffing is it is a freeroll to looking like a dumbass. If you bet big on the river, one of two things is going to happen. One, you win a medium-sized pot, and if you muck no one sees your badass bluff. Two, you lose a huge pot, and everyone sees your mistake.

Most people don’t want to get caught bluffing at the table. It makes them feel uncomfortable.

I get it. I get caught bluffing all the time. It’s always annoying how people snicker and stare afterward.

They were having a friendly game before the bluffer showed up. They don’t take kindly to the person bluffing.

Since most people don’t bluff enough, you shouldn’t go looking for it. Obviously, you’re going to need to learn how to hero call at some point, but if you’re lost in a hand and don’t commit more money, that’s not the worst habit. Most recreational players lose their asses off because they call down when the pro confuses them.

For two weeks, try to fold every single time you’re on the fence. See what it does for your results. I bet you’ll like it. See if anyone shows you a bluff. I doubt they will.

5. Play Only A-Q offsuit+ and 10-10+ For One Session

This is a hardcore challenge, but it changes your perspective forever.

Play one cash game for six or so hours. Play only A-Q offsuit and pocket tens or better.

You will be astounded how nobody picks up on how tight you’re playing.

Even if they do comment about how tight you’re playing, they won’t adjust. Your opens will still get multiple callers. No one will fold to your three-bets.

Don’t be surprised if you make money during this session.

Most people are looking down at their cards and then looking at the board. They’re not paying attention to you.

You can play much tighter than you realize. They’ll still pay you off. ♠

Learn how to play A-K when it misses the flop!

Alexander Fitzgerald is a professional poker player and bestselling author who currently lives in Denver, Colorado. He is a WPT and EPT final tablist, and has WCOOP and SCOOP wins online. His most recent win was the $250,000 Guaranteed on ACR Poker. He currently enjoys blasting bums away in Ignition tournaments while he listens to death metal. Free training packages of his are provided to new newsletter subscribers who sign up at