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What Is A Run In Poker

2023 Feb 15 5 min read
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Playing poker is tough for most players, and there’s an element of luck involved. But what is a run, and how do you counter a bad run? We will tell you what you need to know in this guide.


In poker games, a run refers to the way that the community cards are dealt. You can use it as a way to describe the total number of community cards handed to a player or two players during sessions at the table starting from the flop. However, it can be used to explain the luck a player will have with the cards they are holding when they go all in, and as such, the player wins.

The term run is simple to understand, and it is a fundamental part of the betting experience regardless of whether you are competing in a tournament or participating with friends. Let’s now explore how the term run can dictate what happens in games, and throw in an example or two.


Many factors can affect the outcome in poker, especially when there are high stakes involved. As mentioned, a player can easily embark on a bad run where they are dealt dismal cards which leaves them in trouble at the table. This run could last for a round or a couple of hours, but it’s not uncommon for this to happen, especially on the first board.

Whereas, if the other player goes on a good run where they land a flush, for example, this could make their casino experience a lot more fun. They will be imbued with confidence when they have a better hand, and ultimately it will improve their chances of winning more money from the pot. So, whether you are running good or running bad, this will undoubtedly have an impact as you might imagine. If it is the former, then the person or player should reconfigure their poker strategy to put themselves in a better position on the board.


Things can go wrong in poker, and in a game, you have to learn to take the good with the bad. If you are on a good run, for example, things will fall naturally into place, but how do you counter a bad run? The following should help reduce variance, and reinforce poker strategy for poker players:


Sometimes, the pressure can take its toll in a poker game where there are those players who are going all out to secure a win. It’s a good to reassess things when you are in the middle of a bad run. This applies to professional players too. If you are starting to tilt, then you should pause before rushing to place your next bet. The fun can stop when you are losing, so take a short break and come back when you are feeling fresher. It could make the world of difference!


Yes, sometimes you may be given a truly disappointing poker hand. But the player that can stay composed and have a handle on the situation will be the one that can transform a poor run into a good run. You just have to accept that running bad is part and parcel of the game, and you don’t want your opponent to see you beating yourself up when the dealer supplies some poor cards in your direction.

So, you should try and be as normal wherever possible and carry on about your business. After all, there’s no point in getting overly emotional or you could end up making some rash decision that will affect your odds of winning. If you start to lose too frequently for your liking, then consider reverting to option one to get things back on track. What works for one player might not work for another.


This may be easier said than done if you are losing a lot, and are coming out behind on the poker board. And this piece of advice is well-intentioned if you are one of those all in kind of players. Sometimes, you could be running bad if you are putting more money into the pot with an edge, but instead, you should be a bit cannier if you want to get the best hand, and start running good.

You should always weigh up decisions and always be watching closely to see what is going on around you. A combination of the example we used to describe our first two points will ensure that you can gain more money from the pot in the future.


In poker, you should always learn from your mistakes and adjust things if you are playing badly. Indeed, many players will find they have to take the rough with the smooth when playing poker. But to make things easier, you should split things up into a record of all hands played right through from the flop to the river.

To make it easier, having a running column to make it simple to follow. So, you may have picked up a pair or a flush, but ended up losing in tournaments. Obviously, it helps if you have a firm grasp of the poker rules, and if you have been dealt bad community cards while playing, then you should use information you have gained or trends spotted to help you win next time.


The term run is a crucial one in poker, and as we have seen, it is very easy to have a good run or a dismal run, but running bad shouldn’t be the end of the world. After all, it is very easy to make your own luck in poker, and as the saying goes, fortune favours the brave. There should never be any half measures taken when competing in tournaments, and if you can complete a game while running bad, then you will be much better for it.

We hope this guide has been useful in helping to describe the term run, and if you can apply the tips and advice outlined, then you may be able to experience a run that will keep you satisfied while playing poker from the flop in the long term.