Learn How To Profit Against Limpers

Facing habitual limpers can be frustrating for cash game and poker tournament players but they will not be after these free tips.

Limpers often cause frustration to both cash game and tournament players. Limpers should not be a real cause for concern, you should profit against them in the long run.

We will look at what limpers are, the types of hands they usually limp in with, and how to combat them effectively. Anyone who limps into pots needs to be aware that we are gunning for them.

What Is Meant By Limpers?

Limping into an unopened pot is when a player calls the big blind instead of coming in for a raise. The person calling is limping. The practice is considered bad, not bad etiquette by any means but bad play for reasons we will discuss shortly.

Over-limping, which is limping after someone else has limped in, can be a viable strategy. Again, we shall touch on that later on.

What Is Wrong With a Limpers Strategy?

Are you sat there wondering what is wrong with limping? Let us explain to you. Solid winning players almost always open the pot with a raise. Why? Because any hand worth playing is worth playing for a raise. Raising shows strength, which gives you more opportunities to win the pot. Your opponents may fold preflop or may fold to a continuation-bet on the flop.

Limpers failing to raise are essentially telling their opponents they have a hand they want to play but not one they are happy investing much money with. What sort of hands do this? It depends on the player, obviously, but think along the lines of small pairs, low suited connectors, and trouble hands including the likes of queen-ten or king-ten. They tend to be hands that look pretty but the player is unsure how to play them well.

Limping in with these hands, many of which could easily be raised, allows savvy opponents to push you off pots even when they have missed the board. Furthermore, limpers open the door for more players to limp behind, making their weak holding even less likely to win the pot.

Two Approaches To Take On Those Who Limp

You have two options when taking on limpers: play tighter or loosen up. Tightening is a viable strategy if those behind you three-bet a lot, or you are playing with short stacks. Playing short-stacked reduces both your positional and skill edge.

Last, some limpers are solid players with a balanced limp range, although they are super rare.

Loosening up is a far better strategy to fight limpers in most scenarios. An open-limp usually signifies the player is weak-passive and ripe for combating with aggression. These weak players make plentiful mistakes after the flop, so you realize more equity if you manage to isolate them.

Raising to isolate limpers is a great way to increase your win rate. It forces a weak player to call your raise out of position in a hand they have no momentum in. It is a glorious position to find yourself in!

Raise limpers three big blinds plus one big blind per limper if playing online poker. Increase this to four big blinds plus one big blind in the live arena. Players behind will be discouraged from calling with this sizing, but the limpers will often call.

You Have Them Isolated, Now What?

How you proceed next depends on your opponent type. Some limpers limp with a very wide range of hands, others much tighter. Stack sizes come into play, so we will give a broad statement.

Adopt a strategy for playing against weak-passive players. Obviously, value-bet your made hand and continue betting until you are given a reason not to. These weak players prefer to call you down with any piece of the board or any draw, and only show aggression if and when they make a very strong hand.

You will not always win against limpers, but you will profit against them in the long run. Controlled aggression and positional advantage will see to that.

Brad Johnson

You name the game, and you can bet your bottom dollar that Brad has either played it or placed a wager on it! Brad calls himself a natural gambler, and someone who gains as much enjoyment from writing about the crazy game of poker as he does playing it.


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