The money you have on hand that you use to play poker is called your “bankroll.” It is very important to know that your bankroll is always money you can afford to lose. You should never put money in your bankroll that you had planned to spend on something else.
In poker, managing your bankroll is just as important as having skills, because it keeps you from going bankrupt. A classic poker strategy says that over time, you should play at higher and higher limits. This means that it will cost you more to join a game, but you could win more. The more you raise the limits, the better players you’ll meet.
If you’re on a losing streak, it hurts your bankroll, so it might be smart to play at lower limits, where most players aren’t as good, making them easier to beat.
The number of buy-ins is another important part of managing your bankroll. A buy-in is the amount of money needed to join a game once the limit has been reached. Pro players say that you should manage your bankroll so that you always have enough money for at least 30–50 buy-ins.
If you lose more than 30% of your money in a short amount of time, you should probably play at lower limits. Bankroll management lets you choose the limit that is most comfortable for you and where you will make the most money. And always keep in mind that the chance to play poker at the lowest limits is better than the chance to play poker at any limits.

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