Understanding Limit Poker

Cap betting is a poker rule that refers to limiting the amount of bets that can be made on any given round in Texas Hold’em poker. In fact, it could be in any game poker but is most often asked about from hold’em players, who frequent casinos to play live poker tables.

Cap betting is short for capping the bets, as in putting a lid on it. {Of course this is only found in limit type, poker games, as it wouldn’t make any sense to have such rule in no limit games}. Now cap betting refers to the amount of bets per round, and not the amount of money in a pot, which you would find in a pot limit poker game.

Usually bets and raises per round are limited to four times the current bet. So if you are at a $2/$4 hold’em table before the flop, the maximum you’ll be able to put in the pot is $8, not accounting for blind money in there already. Fourth and fifth streets, you’ll be able to put in $16. Of course he won’t be the only person in the pot, and more of your opponents that are the bigger the pot is going to be. You may often hear at the table, especially in the lower limits, “cap it” as a result of raising and re-raising before the flop with marginal hands, and even more marginal players. Therein lies the real reason casinos have cap betting. It’s simply a matter of poker odds. It’s not to protect weaker players from losing all their money in one pot, it’s precisely the opposite.

There is a reason casinos limit the betting this way. They earn more rake by inviting more weaker players into each and every pot. Keep in mind this is not a sit and go tournament, this is cash game strategy. This goes to the very nature of loose players who frequent casinos and want to stay in pots too long. Pots generally become larger when more players enter them in increments rather than making big, one time decisions for their whole stack.

There is also a common rule in poker rooms that negates cap betting on 5th street when the action gets heads up, – between just two players. When this happens, the betting can continue until eithe one of the player’s runs out of chips. Yes you can, and guess why…. right. The casinos earn more. Since all the other players are out of the hand, the only way for the pot to grow bigger is as a result of aggressive betting by the remaining two combatants. These are some simple holdem rules you should understand before going to the casino – understanding them may very well save you some money.