The Template

April 16, 2016

The template is a mental list of questions I ask myself during each hand to avoid autopilot. My students find it extremely useful because it's an easy way to guide their thoughts in the right direction. I'm sure you'll see the value of it in the video above. I rarely share clips from coaching sessions but this one is a must-see. If you'd prefer, you can view it directly from YouTube by clicking here. Enjoy!


  • Who has a pre-flop range advantage?

    • What is my range?

    • How does Villain perceive my range?

    • As a result of Villain’s perceptions, what is his range?

  • Who has a range advantage on this flop?

    • Who has the most equity on the flop?

    • Whose range is uncapped?

    • Whose range has the most pairs?

  • How many combinations of value hands do I have in my range?

    • How many bluffs can my value range support?

    • Is Villain folding enough for my bluffs to be profitable?

    • Can I defend against check-raises?

    • Is my checking range well protected?

  • How many combinations of value hands does Villain have in his range?

    • Is he bluffing more or less often than the suggested bluff to value ratios?

    • Could this board texture cause him to unwittingly over-bluff or under-bluff?

    • How much equity do I need to call according to pot-odds?

    • How often do I need to defend to meet minimum defense frequency?

    • Do I have implied odds?


Also, don't forget to check out to learn a little more about your personality. Occasionally, I have my students take the personality test. Knowing the way my students think and perceive the world is useful when I'm trying to customize our sessions to their needs. I hope you find this outline useful. If you have any questions, feel free to send an email. Good luck at the tables!


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