What is Straddle poker and how to play straddle poker:

Live Straddle Poker
Betting in live straddle poker

Straddle poker is not like normal Texas Hold’em. In straddle, you can use straddles, which means that if there are no limps before the flop. The player has to put a bet equal to half the big blind before the cards are dealt. This is called straddle or night straddle as players can straddle in any position at any time even it’s early on day one. If players have straddled so far they have to straddle again from now on. You don’t have to do it every time though. The person who raises the first preflop can also be given a tip/advice which allows them two bets straddle poker after straddle.

Straddle Poker Strategy:

Play tight and straddle as often as you can without letting your opponents take advantage of it.

You want to straddle rarely as your opponents will just exploit it and start straddling themselves too much.

On the other hand, don’t straddle so rarely that your straddles become useless. And people just keep on raising with their good hands before you’ve straddled or rather won’t be bothered to straddle until you do yourself.

How to use straddles?

There are no set rules on how to use this tool but I think there are some tips that may be helpful:

1-In earlier positions where players still have many chips I would straddle more.

2-Late position straddles are better because people will still think you have a lot of chips and need to straddle in order to get straddle value out of your straddles. This is not true if someone straddled before you but given that players don’t always straddle you should be fine.

3-If there’s no limper under the gun this generally means everyone has folded to your straddle last time around (you can use OOP straddles but they require an even tighter game).

4- You want to look like a maniac who doesn’t care about money in an early position when you’re planning on making another straddle within the next few orbits.

5- Opponents might start thinking straddling is too expensive and start straddling themselves which is not really a bad thing either. They will straddle even with hands they would normally straddle with but their range gets tighter of course.

6- Check to straddle bet once or twice (or more) if your opponents aren’t supposed to be tight like rags (this might happen when you get up against loose players).

When should you straddle?

Let’s say we’re playing $1/$2 no limit Hold’em on Party Poker and we straddle from the button for $4. It means that we want to play a pot size of at least $12 here (which is half the big blind). If someone raises and another person calls this is a straddle pot and we usually get to see a flop for our $4. I would straddle basically whenever I expect the straddle bet to make my opponents fold enough. If it doesn’t work out you can always straddle again soon. Don’t straddle too often or your straddles will just become useless and people won’t bother straddling behind you either and you’ll lose value from your straddles.

If we’re playing $1/$2 no limit Hold’em on Poker Stars we’re allowed to straddle only in late position (Button, UTG+1). So sometimes players raise first preflop making it easier to play OOP straddle. If there’s already one limper many times players straddle preflop with a fairly wide range of hands and this straddle is pretty much equivalent to a straddle from an early position on Party Poker.

An example of straddle poker:

betting in straddle poker live
Straddle poker Betting

We’re playing $1/$2 no limit Hold’em on Poker Stars and we straddle from the button for $4. Which means that we want to play a pot size of at least $12 + straddle ($16) here (which is half the big blind). If someone raises and another person calls this is a straddle pot and we usually get to see a flop for our $4. I would straddle basically whenever I expect the straddle bet to make my opponents fold enough. If it doesn’t work out you can always straddle again soon. Don’t straddle too often or your straddles will just become useless. And people won’t bother straddling behind you either and you’ll lose value from your straddles.

Straddle Poker FAQ:

Can I straddle in no limit Hold’em?

Yes, if it’s offered on the poker room where you’re playing (Party Poker,  etc.). But different poker rooms offer different straddle limits up to $16 which is equivalent to a big blind (and only in late position). This rule changes often and can be the subject of change without notice. Beware that not all poker rooms allow straddling at all either.

How many hands do I need to play before straddling?

I straddle whenever I want to play a straddle pot, this means. I straddle usually when I have at least 8 or 9 players in the straddle pot. If it’s 6 handed you can sometimes straddle with mediocre hands though but is usually more profitable to make another straddle soon after that. You want to be thinking about straddling in whenever your last straddle didn’t work out too well. Because people just tightened up their play against straddles after that.

How do professional poker players straddle?

They don’t actually, there are not many professionals who would play OOP all day long with bad starting hand selection which means they wouldn’t get much value from straddling either. Unless they straddle as a straddle bluff with some hands it’ll usually be an uninformed straddle.

What does straddling mean?

It means you’re straddling a certain amount of money, it’s basically a forced bet. This is done by making a bet before the flop and saying. You’re straddling which forces players behind you to call or raise that straddle bet if they want to continue playing this hand (by folding).

Should I straddle from an early position?

No, not really – it’s hard to get value from straddles from the early position because your opponents will probably play. And this way too tightly against straddles from the early position if your straddle is essentially equivalent to a straddle from an early position on Party Poker.

Can straddling become a part of my game?

I straddle rarely but I often straddle as a bluff so. I don’t think straddling can become a part of your strategy if you’re not going to be straddling too often. If straddles work out for you though. It’ll never become a part of your game because people will adjust. And tighten up their play against your straddles after that which makes it harder to get value from straddles later on.

What happens if someone else puts in money before me?

There are two situations:

In case there’s already one person who raised preflop.

Another person only calls, then the straddle bet will be just $4.

I’ll straddle by raising to at least $12 because this means that there’s now a straddle pot which is half of the big blind ($8). In case multiple players have already called before me, it depends on the straddle limit. If it’s for instance $4/$8 or even less, I’d go all-in here because this would mean that. I still haven’t invested much in the straddle pot yet. And my straddle can basically only win more money than what I invest into it (when playing for this type of straddle limit).

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