6 Jan

Delineation of FL, NL and PL Poker Limits

FYI Poker Fixed Limit, No Limit and Pot Limit explained.

Betting Structures in Poker Fixed Limit, No Limit and Pot Limit Explained

Poker is an easy game, right? Whether it’s 5 Card Draw or Texas Holdem, the rules of hand ranking remain the same. The player with the best 5-card hand wins. Draw phases and flop-turn-river community draws are simple enough to comprehend. But if you sit down at a table without a basic knowledge of limit-based betting structures, you’re not going to have any idea how many chips to put in the pot at any given time.

There are three basic limit types, known as Fixed Limit (FL), No Limit (NL) and Pot Limit (PL). Don’t just assume that you know what they mean, based on the names. No Limit may sound like you can bet any amount at any time, but that’s not the case. If you don’t have a competent understanding of these terms, you’ll get laughed off the table faster than you can fold.

Holdem Poker Fixed Limit Betting

In a fixed limit poker game, the size of all bets are – you guessed it – fixed. You can only bet specific amounts at each betting interval. There will be two bet sizes noted in the name of the game; one low and one high. For example, a $1/$2 FL poker game. These denote the small and big bet sizes in the first and second half of a Holdem game. They do not, however, denote the size of the small blind and big blind, as most beginners might assume, nor do they mean you can choose to bet $1 or $2 at any given time.

In Fixed Limit Holdem (FLHE), there are four betting rounds. The first half of the game consists of Pre-Flop and Post-Flop betting. The second half are Turn and River bets. In a $1/$2 game, Pre/Post-Flop bets and raises must be exactly $1 each, while turn/River bets increase to $2 each.

The big blind is always equal to the smaller stake in fixed limit games. Thus the small blind is $0.50, and the big blind $1.

Poker No Limit Betting Structure

A NLHE poker game is played similar to that of a FLHE game, in terms of small/big blind betting. The small blind is equal to half of the low-end bet size, and the big blind is equal to the low-end bet size. Otherwise, these bet sizes denote only the minim bets and raises that can be placed in the first and second half of the betting rounds. There is no cap on any bets or raises. You are only restricted by the amount of chips to your name.

In a $1/$2 NLHE game, all bets and raises must be at least $1 during Pre=Flop and Post-Flop betting rounds; at least $2 in Turn and River betting rounds.

Poker Pot Limit Betting Rules

This is the hardest of all limit structures to get used to, despite the fact that it’s name is the most telling of them all. PLHE is the perfect meld of FL and NL games. The limit is fixed, but it grows larger with every wager placed, with the maximum bet/raise always being equal to the size of the pot.

Like in all poker games, the small blind is half the low-end limit, and big blind equal to the low-end limit. Akin to NL games, a bet limit of $1/$2 means these are the lowest possible bets and raises in the first/second half of betting rounds. But every time chips go into the pot, the max bet/raise increases to match the current pot size.

If the pot has $10 in it, you can bet $10. Doing so increases the pot to $20, giving the next better the option to raise as high as $20. In this way, PL games – most often played as Omaha Holdem (aka PLO) – start out cheap like playing poker at fixed limit rules, but have the potential to get very expensive, like no limit poker.

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