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 05-16-2017, 06:51 AM #1 davidosss newbie   Join Date: Aug 2013 Posts: 48 Thinking in Ranges Hi guys, I have problems thinking in terms of ranges at the table.. Away from the table I fairly naturally analyse my (and others) play thinking in ranges. But in the middle of the action I often find myself thinking like "he would bet X, Y and Z here. I beat X and he's laying me 3 to 1, I think he must have X more than 1/4 of the time so the call must be profitable". I guess the real problem lies in not judging the hand as a whole and thereby, when at the river, forgetting earlier actions and what range villain actually arives at the river with.. Because of this I often have no idea of how large part of his betting range that actually is X.. Anyone recognizing this problem? How did u solve it?
 05-16-2017, 11:45 AM #2 mrfunnywobbl journeyman     Join Date: Nov 2016 Location: Sentient Ant Colony Posts: 347 Re: Thinking in Ranges I second this almost word for word. Honestly even with the 30 second timebank it isn't enough time to delve deep mentally.
 05-16-2017, 02:42 PM #3 Shamway99 veteran   Join Date: Oct 2012 Posts: 3,205 Re: Thinking in Ranges Just repeat the analyses off table again and again to get feeling where you are, hardly can do the analyse at table.
 05-16-2017, 03:18 PM #4 pocketzeroes veteran   Join Date: Aug 2010 Posts: 2,034 Re: Thinking in Ranges Practice counting combos. Like say somebody raises, you call with AQo. Board comes AcKdTc. How many combos in villain's range beat you? How many combos lose to you? How many flush draws does villain have? Etc, etc. Look at how those numbers are proportionate to each other. Look at how different ranges hit different flops. E.g., maybe construct preflop ranges for a fish limping or calling, a decent reg opening in early/late position or calling a raise or 3betting. Then write down random flops and count how many combos there are with each range for top pair/overpair/two pair/sets/flush draws/straight draws, etc. Again, look at how the hand types are spread out proportionately for the various preflop ranges. If you spend a lot of time working this stuff out away from the table, it will be a lot more natural at the table.
 05-16-2017, 04:21 PM #5 LuckyShim newbie   Join Date: Dec 2016 Posts: 35 Re: Thinking in Ranges In your heads, do you guys visualize the pre flop starting hands chart? Or do you think of it in terms of 77+, AT+, AJo, etc.?
 05-16-2017, 04:58 PM #6 Yadoula8 adept   Join Date: Aug 2014 Location: Royal Leamington Spa Posts: 988 Re: Thinking in Ranges Alrite mate! What your doing is attempting to consider the villains range for the first time on the river. This is almost impossible to do in the time limit. What you should be doing is following his range from when it has 100% of hands in it. Everytime he makes a decision, we then take hands away from his range. Thats Level Two. Before you make any move you should consider how your own perceived range will change, and can then predict how the villain will react with the different parts of his range during his next move. Which is Level Three.
 05-16-2017, 05:33 PM #7 BDHarrison adept   Join Date: Nov 2016 Posts: 856 Re: Thinking in Ranges I try to calculate his river betting range before the river card.
 05-16-2017, 05:36 PM #8 AceHigh veteran   Join Date: Sep 2002 Posts: 3,062 Re: Thinking in Ranges The way I play is I substitute my range for my opponents and come up with a range based on the way I play as a first guess. Then I decide if I should fold or call or raise if I was playing against myself and my range. Then I adjust my play based on what I think of my opponent, if he's looser I might call more if tighter I might fold more.
05-16-2017, 08:13 PM   #9

Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Royal Leamington Spa
Posts: 988
Re: Thinking in Ranges

Quote:
 Originally Posted by BDHarrison I try to calculate his river betting range before the river card.
... and not just his betting range I'm sure. I expect you consider what he will do on later streets in general. Whether he will bet, check or fold with the hands in his range on future cards.

Don't be daunted Davidoss, anyone can follow a range and guess how it will change. One of the things I've learnt while studying these Levels is that we all use this same strategic thought process for every single decision we make. So we're all naturals already.

Right now your struggling to read the opponents range... My mind isn't better than yours, i'm no mathematical genius, but I can easily see 3 ranges per villain at any given time and consider how those ranges might change based on all kinds of factors, and that's before we even get started on chips... This is something we're all fully capable of.

All you really need to do is consciously consider those ranges at any given time, and then consciously consider what might happen to them in the future, and then... Hey presto! Magically your amazing mind makes it easy.

Accuracy is what will separate the men from the boys once my theory book is out. For example, while pre-flop, you'd have to be a super duper genius to accurately consider the villains river betting range.

Last edited by Yadoula8; 05-16-2017 at 08:20 PM.

 05-17-2017, 12:32 PM #10 davidosss newbie   Join Date: Aug 2013 Posts: 48 Re: Thinking in Ranges Thanks guys, a whole lot of cool tips! Seems like work away from the table is step 1! Did u do this work with Flopzilla, some other tool or pen and paper? Pros and cons with the different approaches?
05-17-2017, 12:35 PM   #11
davidosss
newbie

Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 48
Re: Thinking in Ranges

Quote:
 Originally Posted by AceHigh The way I play is I substitute my range for my opponents and come up with a range based on the way I play as a first guess. Then I decide if I should fold or call or raise if I was playing against myself and my range. Then I adjust my play based on what I think of my opponent, if he's looser I might call more if tighter I might fold more.
This seems like a really smooth way of thinking!
Do the others of you also use this method?

 05-17-2017, 12:52 PM #12 davidosss newbie   Join Date: Aug 2013 Posts: 48 Re: Thinking in Ranges Thanks for the pep Yadoula8 !😊 Nice to hear that its just a matter of dedication..!
05-18-2017, 04:45 PM   #13
just_grindin
Pooh-Bah

Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 4,304
Re: Thinking in Ranges

Quote:
 Originally Posted by davidosss Thanks guys, a whole lot of cool tips! Seems like work away from the table is step 1! Did u do this work with Flopzilla, some other tool or pen and paper? Pros and cons with the different approaches?
You can do a combination of both but honestly software is your friend and you can even get some software that will give you gto approximations for spots. Also I personally think the way software organizes ranges will help the way you visualize them in your head.

 05-30-2017, 08:44 AM #14 mateuschwarz enthusiast     Join Date: Jul 2014 Location: Foz do Iguaçu, PR Posts: 61 Re: Thinking in Ranges I recently started using PokerStrategy Equilab (super common app) and theres a mini game where you select V range and Hero range, then the quiz starts giving you hands in your selected range and random flops asking you to define your approximate equity in the spot. Think its impossoble to get it 100%, but you can get your error margin lower with some practice. It really improved my range thinking, specially when you can set yourself a BB def range vs a tight BU open, or loose CO open, or even a limp range from fish.
 05-30-2017, 04:41 PM #15 Yadoula8 adept   Join Date: Aug 2014 Location: Royal Leamington Spa Posts: 988 Re: Thinking in Ranges Flopzilla and equilab are cool, but I prefer to use a good old fashioned deck of cards... Back in my training days I would carry a deck with me and then whenever I found myself sat alone I would get them out and practice. I'd start by dealing out hands to me and my imaginary opponent/s, then i'd imagine some bets going in, and then I'd consider the ranges. I'd then deal a flop or ten, and would consider how often those range had hit etc etc. I found this almost theriputic. We can also keep our hand facedown which makes it much easier for us to consider our own percieved range. It makes it easier to imagine the game through the opponents eyes. Here's a little gem that will help - It is when an opponent makes a move that their range changes. And it's when we make a move that our percieved range changes. Anytime anybody makes a move, we reconsider their range... We follow the ranges... This is how to really play poker, but not very many people can do it even though it is remarkably easy to do with very little practice. And please mate, for your own good, heed this warning - You may well be enticed into learning GTO by others, Just_grinding mentioned it in his post, but my exclusive opinion is that this will very bad for you unless you first learn to consider the first four levels of thought. (There is only one more after you learn to follow your percieved range). Last edited by Yadoula8; 05-30-2017 at 04:55 PM.
05-30-2017, 04:53 PM   #16

Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Royal Leamington Spa
Posts: 988
Re: Thinking in Ranges

Quote:
 Originally Posted by davidosss Thanks for the pep Yadoula8 !�� Nice to hear that its just a matter of dedication..!
Not much dedication IMO, I've taught people to follow those ranges in an hour... These guys were able to make awesome plays but they were also highly susceptible to emotional problems at the tables, and so developing the concentration needed to make you into a winner can take time, but I promise, the thought process itself will come naturally to you.

06-01-2017, 05:56 PM   #17
jgills
newbie

Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 20
Re: Thinking in Ranges

Quote:
 Originally Posted by pocketzeroes Practice counting combos. Like say somebody raises, you call with AQo. Board comes AcKdTc. How many combos in villain's range beat you? How many combos lose to you? How many flush draws does villain have? Etc, etc. Look at how those numbers are proportionate to each other. Look at how different ranges hit different flops. E.g., maybe construct preflop ranges for a fish limping or calling, a decent reg opening in early/late position or calling a raise or 3betting. Then write down random flops and count how many combos there are with each range for top pair/overpair/two pair/sets/flush draws/straight draws, etc. Again, look at how the hand types are spread out proportionately for the various preflop ranges. If you spend a lot of time working this stuff out away from the table, it will be a lot more natural at the table.
When you talk about combos, are you talking about combos out of 169 hands? i.e. AQo, AQs or AA or 99, or are you thinking in terms of 1326 hands such as AdQs, AdQc. im guessing youre counting combos out of 169 hands because the other seems kind of unwieldy, but maybe there are some basic adjustments im not thinking of.

06-01-2017, 06:19 PM   #18
pocketzeroes
veteran

Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 2,034
Re: Thinking in Ranges

Quote:
 Originally Posted by jgills When you talk about combos, are you talking about combos out of 169 hands? i.e. AQo, AQs or AA or 99, or are you thinking in terms of 1326 hands such as AdQs, AdQc. im guessing youre counting combos out of 169 hands because the other seems kind of unwieldy, but maybe there are some basic adjustments im not thinking of.
All combos.

Like my example, we have AQ, board is AKT.

Combos that beat us are:
TT (3)
KK (3)
AA (1)
AK (6)
AT (6)
KT (9)
JQ (12)

That's 43 combos... It's just a matter of practice. Doing it a lot away from the table, you can intuitively have a rough idea at the table without actually necessarily going through all of the arithmetic.

Obviously you'd usually want to apply specific ranges, and maybe you need to count combos of draws or hands we beat vs hands we lose to that might call if we bet or whatever.

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