Poker Basics is a 10-part crash course in beginner Texas Hold'em poker strategy. Today's installment covers how to count chips and it's a skill you need to have to play poker live. Online poker players take it for granted that they can just look down and see exactly how many chips they and their opponents have. When you're playing live poker it can confusing to count your own chips and count the chips in your opponents' stacks. However, it's a skill you must learn to succeed in live poker tournaments. The universal way to count chips is to organize them into stacks of 20, and then add up the total value of all your stacks. The first step is to grab a handful of chips, drop five on the felt and then use your finger or thumb to cut out three more stacks of five. Stack those up and now you have a guide to organize the rest of your chips into stacks of 20. Now just use the different chip denomination values to figure out how much each stack is worth and add them all together. If your opponents are considerate, they'll have organized their chips into nice, neat stacks of 20, allowing you to easily add up all their stacks to figure out their total chip count. When you're starting out it's hard to keep track of everyone's stacks but with some practice, it'll soon become second nature. Check out this Poker Basics video to learn how to count chips like a pro in under two minutes.
When you're playing poker, it's really important to be aware of how many chips you and your opponents have. But when you've got multiple denominations and tons of chips to deal with, getting an exact count quickly could be tough for beginners. But don't worry, there are a few easy tricks to counting chips easily and accurately.
The first thing you need to do is make sure your chips are organized by denomination in powers of 20. The easiest way to do that is to grab a handful of chips, drop five on the felt, and use your thumb or finger to cut the rest into three more stacks of five. Stack that up and now you have a guide to get all your chips into towers of 20. Now figure out how much each tower is worth. Common tournament denominations include 25, 100, 500, and 1000. In stacks of 20 they are worth 500, 2000, 10,000, and 20,000. Now just add the values of each tower together to find your total.
Always knowing how many chips you and your opponents have is really important. especially in tournament poker. And if you spend some time practicing now, it will soon become second nature. PokerListings.com, start your poker journey today.