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POKER HUD

How to setup your Poker HUD (part 1) [video]

I recently gave some pretty thorough instructions on how to setup your poker HUD. In this video, I start from the very beginning and show you the most important poker stats to setup first.

Poker HUD Notes

For these poker lessons we’re using (Texas) Holdem Manager and then later get into the more advanced stuff (like how to use showdown stats).

For today’s lesson, feel free to follow along yourself in HEM, building the HUD from scratch. To get started, click the reports tab and then click on “HUD settings”. Here’s an additional pro tip: click “Upgrade to new popups” if you haven’t already! This will update the design of all of your pop-ups so they look much better.

Mike takes a prioritized approach, starting with the most important and relevant poker statistics that you should add to your HUD. These are the numbers you can use when you first get start playing, while you have less than 1000 hands on most of your opponents. It’s actually important that you don’t put TOO MANY statistics in your HUD at the beginning because 1) you might overwhelm yourself but more importantly 2) many of the statistics won’t be reliable.

The first few stats to you want to add are: Name, VPIP, PFR, and Hands. The focus for the lesson is on 6-max, but you can use a similar HUD for HU and Full-Ring. Just recognize that the meaning of the pre-flop numbers tends to vary between these game types.

First, VPIP, the “grand-daddy” of all stats. This is the best statistic to figure out if your opponent is a fish or not. It simply represents the percentage of hands your opponent decides to play (i.e. put money into the pot beyond just the blinds).

One thing to pay very close attention to are your sample sizes! A critical skill is knowing when you can trust your HUD statistic. While usually you need at least 50 samples for the individual statistic, you can relax this suggested threshold if your statistic is an “outlier”. The further the stat gets from the average number (for that stat) the more relatively significant it will be over a given sample size. If you don’t quite get that, no worries. Just get in the habit of using the pop-ups to double-check the stat as Mike explains in the video.

Now, not all poker stats are created equal. Fold to 3-bet for example requires FAR more hands than the 3-bet stat itself. And similarly you can use the continuation bet statistic (or c-bet) much sooner (i.e. with fewer overall hands) than you can use fold to c-bet.

The next two stats Mike suggests adding are: 3-bet and cold call raiser.

A viewer asks if all of these can be used on Bovada (aka Bodog) and the answer is yes! …but you will need some extra software: either holdem indicator or the Bovada card grabber.

Next you want to add postflop aggression (not aggression factor!) and continuation bet.

A viewer asks about the difference between PFR by position and RFI (aka raise first in) by position. Mike explains: the latter (RFI) is what you should be using! PFR is fine to use as a summary stat, but positional PFR is pretty much useless.

Watch part 2

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8 Comments
  • Dustin Wallington
    July 31, 2015 at 9:08 pm

    Hey Mike,

    Great video, as per usual! I am still continuing to watch the remaining two parts for setting up your HUD in which you might answer my question but I was wondering what your thoughts are in regards to late position steal % and fold to late position steal %?

    • Mike Gano
      August 9, 2015 at 8:12 pm

      Your steal percentages by position are really the same thing as RFI (raise first in) or also called unopened PFR. Just focus on what your RFI should be by position. A good CO rfi is 25-30%. BTN: 45-60%. SB same.

      SB fold to steal should be 75-80%.
      BB fold to steal should be 60-75%.

  • Mike Gano
    August 9, 2015 at 8:12 pm

    Your steal percentages by position are really the same thing as RFI (raise first in) or also called unopened PFR. Just focus on what your RFI should be by position. A good CO rfi is 25-30%. BTN: 45-60%. SB same.

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