What Is A Straddle In Poker & When Shouldn’t You Do It?

Poker is perhaps one of the most played and loved online casino games in the world. It has the charm, thrill, interesting gameplay, and everything else that is required to keep you hooked for hours to come. But, there is one thing that might irk some of the Poker lovers and its multiple concepts. 

From table positions to type of bet, one has to learn so many things about poker before gaining mastery in the game. 

One such concept is straddle. Don’t know what it means? Well, we’re going to help you decode it. 

What is Straddle in Poker? 

Straddle in poker is a voluntary blind bet. Players make this bet before cards are dealt and this is mainly suitable for players sitting at an under-the-gun (UTG) table position. Here are some of the few key things to know about straddles. 

A straddle has to be double the amount of big blind and is often considered as the third blind. For big blind is $10 then straddle must be $20.  

When a straddle bet takes place, the poker game starts with the player to their immediate left, who now has the best position at the table. 

Straddler, the player making straddle bet, is known as pre-flop. 

Straddles are most common in live cash games, especially high-stakes ones, and are rarely seen in online poker or tournaments. Some poker rooms allow straddles from other positions like the button (Mississippi straddle). 

As straddle is double of big bet, it’s often used to increase the stake of the game, resulting in a bigger pot. 

How Straddle in Poker Impacts the Game? 

Even though many players use straddle bets, it has a great impact on the gameplay. Its usage makes the overall table dynamics a little more tighter. 

When someone straddles, it pushes others to increase their bet size or exit the game. Many even prefer to fold with a decent hand.  Players behind a straddle can force weaker hands to rise. In a nutshell, it can make otherwise boring gameplay an interesting one. 

Types of Straddle 

Based you on the position of the player, a straddle is mainly divided into two categories, explained: 

  • Button Straddle- Button Straddle allows players to straddle using the dealer button voluntarily before the cards are dealt. This grants the button player the final preflop action, intensifying the game with higher stakes and more aggressive play possibilities. 
  • Mississippi Straddle- A Mississippi straddle differs in that any player can make the straddle from any position except the blinds. When a Mississippi straddle is in place, the player to the left of the straddler starts the action. The straddler then acts last preflop. 

When to use and Avoid Straddle in Poker 

Straddle can be a great way to jazz up the gameplay if you use it the right way.  In this section, we’re going to tell you when to use it and when to avoid it. 

Use Straddle bet when:

  • You feel that the gameplay has become very boring and you want to make it interesting. The use of this bet forces other players to up their stakes. 
  • You want to exploit the tight play.  If you’re playing against stronger players, having a great hand, and use of straddle can help you disrupt their strategies and make them bold moves. 
  • You want to gain positional advantage. By straddling, you gain the last action pre-flop, potentially giving you an edge.

That was all about when to use straddle in poker. Now, it’s time to talk about the situations and when to avoid them. 

You should never use straddle in poker when: 

  • You’re new to Poker and are not very much aware of all types of bets and how to use table position to gain an edge over your peers. Straddle is a strategic move that you can’t afford to make when you don’t have a better understanding of its dynamics. We recommend you master the art of playing poker using demo games at a leading online casino. 
  • You’re part of a nitty table. If everyone’s already very tight then using straddle will not help you much. It will only cost you more chips. So, you better stay away from this. 

Final Say 

Poker has many ways to make the game play a bit more interesting and straddle is one of them. It’s an easy way to spice up an otherwise boring poker game and force other players to raise their stakes. But, learn to know it wisely, before actually using it. So, choose a reliable online casino to play poker, manage your funds, and use Straddle to have highly thrilling gameplay. 

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