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Bluffing Poker Tells

Players will give off certain and more precise tells when they are bluffing. Although it may matter on the player themselves, there are some general tells that Caro talks about that apply at the poker table.

Smoking

Even though smoking is banned in almost every poker room today, you still may find this helpful for your home game. If you are playing against someone who is smoking, and bets large, you will probably see two different reactions. If he is blowing smoke, perhaps talking and laughing, he is very comfortable and is probably not bluff. However, if after a large bet, you do not notice any smoke being blown, almost like he is holding his breath, and staying very still, he is probably bluffing.

Covering Mouth

Always pay close attention to a person’s hands, especially after he makes a bet. If you notice someone bet and cover their mouth, this is an indication that he is bluffing. There has been a lot of research done on body language, some of which does not apply to poker, but one common link was found; when someone covers their mouth, they are usually lying. Caro added this to his law of tells, “In the absences of indications to the contrary, call any bettor who hands covers his mouth.”

Disgusted Wager

Weak means strong!!! Whenever you see someone act disgusted, pained, or confused, then raises, this is always an indication that he is strong. “Disappoint any player who, by acting weak, is seeking your call.”

Keep from Shaking

If you have ever noticed someone trying to keep their hands from shaking, you can assume he is trying to control himself from giving away anything because he has a big hand. In fact, Caro says, “It is a dead giveaway that is it not a bluff.” It may be hard to spot, but if you watch someone’s hands as they make a bet, it can help you look for this tell. If they were acting more friendly, smiling, maybe cracking jokes or talking, the more apt he is to be bluffing.

“A trembling bet is a force to be feared,” which is one of Caro’s laws of tells. If you ever see someone look at a card, or if a scare card comes on the river, then trembles before they bet, it probably hit them. Some people use to think they were shaking because they were bluffing, however most of the time they are shaking from excitement.

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