There’s more to poker than just relying on a good deal of the cards
Taking calculated risks is part of many facets of life, especially when playing poker. A multi-table tournament is the best way to see calculated risks in action. There is no way in which a poker player can make a profit from playing poker unless a number of calculated risks exist. Actually, the risk is what makes a tournament being full of variance; however, the calculated part is what will help the most solid player to win in the end.
Perhaps the biggest challenge is defining what the calculated risk will be. Making the best decision often comes as a result of experience rather than calculating odds. While it is true that understanding odds can be quite helpful, what really makes a player win is his ability to critically analyze a situation. Therefore, how you calculate the risk is what matters the most. For instance, if your calculation said that you will force folds 40% of the time, but it ended up being only 10%, your calculation was certainly not good at all. That’s why experience matter so much for this skill.
When and how you make a calculated risk will be defined by your image at the table, the stage in which the tournament is and any opponents who might still be involved in the hand. If you are able to figure out these three things while playing, most likely, you will be right in your calculations most of the time.
Your image at the table means that you need to be aware of how your opponents might be reading your play. It is worth being aware of how many hands you make big bets or were caught bluffing. Also, consider your intention in the tournament and how far along is. If you already got in the money and you wanted only minimal cash out, you can take more risks; however, if you are trying to win the tournament then you need to reconsider your actions.