All about position in Texas Hold’em
You’ve probably heard “position” come up frequently in how-to guides, but what does it mean?
Simply put, position in poker refers to where you sit at a table relative to the Dealer Button. Seat 1 is directly to the left of the Dealer Button. Seat numbers are sequential and move in a clockwise direction. Position determines the dealing and betting order in each orbit.
During a game of poker, the seat you are in may be considered Early position, Middle position or Late position. Late positions are always the best positions to be in as you get to act after other players have acted (call, raise, fold) on their hands.
With each hand, your position is determined by where the Dealer button is located. Since it moves in a clockwise direction to a new player after each hand, your position always changes after every hand. Over the course of the game, each player will get multiple chances to play from the various positions.
Early position identifies the first three 3 seats to the immediate left of the dealer. (Remember, the two players to the left of the dealer are the small blind and big blind and must place their bet before the cards are dealt. During the Pre-Flop round, the small blind and big blind are the last to act. In subsequent rounds, they will be the first to act.) The player to the left of the big blinds is said to be “under the gun.” These three seats are considered the worst positions as players in these positions are the first to act in the betting round.
On Replay’s 9-player tables, Middle position includes seats 4 through 6. These seats are more advantageous than the Early position seats, but not as advantageous as being in the late position. Players in the middle position get to know how the first few players have played their hands.
The player designated by the dealer button (dealer position) and the two players to his/her immediate right are said to be in the late position. Being on the dealer button is the best position to be playing from in a hand.
Players in the late position are the last to act, and they can see how the other players have played their hands. The information you gain from being in the late position allows you to play weaker starting hands or even fold strong hands like JJ or AQ.
Ultimately your decision to bet, raise or fold will be determined by the strength of your hole cards. During the early stages of learning to play Texas Hold’em, it is best to play only when you have Premium Starting Hands.