Bankroll management is one of the poker fundamentals that many players either completely overlook, or they do not fully understand the importance behind good bankroll management.
What is bankroll management
You need to have a sufficient bankroll to match not only the limits you are playing at, but also to match your style of play. For example if you have an ultra aggressive style of play, there is a good chance you make good money 6 out of 7 days but you have to be prepared for them odd hands that can totally wipe you out of a cash game.
Therefore you cannot play a $0.50/$1 table if you are only carrying a bankroll of $50 as you will only have one chance to play at the table.
Bankroll management is like anything else you have to try and understand the basics behind the subject before you try and move onto the more complicated concepts behind it. Internet poker is a fast paced game, there are many hands being played and many big pots being won and lost every single hour.
If you are a completely new player to the game we would advise that you keep to the micro limit games at a good poker room like pokerstars as this way you can limit the amount of money you can potentially loose while getting to grips with the variation in game play and the change in pace from a live to an internet game.
The biggest down fall of players new and old when it comes to bankroll management is the limit they play at, many players will play at the right limit at the start. But they may only play at this limit for a week or so. This is because they start to make regular money on the tables and feel that if they move up to a higher limit and carry on to win as often as they do at the current limit they will then increase the total amount of money they make each day.
There would be a truth to this if it was not for two very important factors. The first off course is that you got a sufficient bankroll to sustain playing at your new limit. For example if you have come from a $0.02/$0.04 stake then you should have a bankroll of $40. This is a sufficient bankroll of 1000BB as it is enough for 10 full buy-ins, therefore giving you a barrier if you have a bad couple of days.
However to move up the next limit $0.05/$0.10 you should really be looking at holding a bankroll of $100. So you can once again cover the 10 buyins necessary to play the limit properly.
The disadvantage to playing a limit with a stretched bankroll is mainly psychological if you are playing at a table and you have to put your entire bankroll into that table to play. Your decisions may become clouded because you are playing with the sole intent of not loosing. You will therefore miss potential big money making opportunities in the fear or loosing your bankroll, this will then in turn come back to bite you in the bum when you do eventually commit your entire bankroll to a hand that you eventually get beat on.
Tougher higher stake tables
The second disadvantage to moving your game up a higher limit is the increase in player ability, which generally improves the further up the limits you climb.
In a micro limit, where many players are new and inexperienced, you may find that you hold your own and are making a profit. We would advise that you carry on doing this for maybe a month or so before contemplating a move up the limits.
This allows you to both build the sufficient bankroll, while you build up a sufficient skill level to match the players in the higher limits. This way you will not become one of the fish at the next limit tables, for the sharks to pick away at. Because if this is the case then you will eventually end up loosing most of, if not all of you bankroll.
If you are going to play with a sufficient bankroll you will need enough money to cover 10 buy ins. E.g. at a $0.02/$0.04 limit one buy in is $4 this means that you will need a bankroll of $40 to cover 10 full buy ins.
At $0.05/$0.10 a buy full buy in is $10, there fore you will need a bankroll of $100 to cover your 10 buy-ins.
You need to calculate the same for every limit you play, a full buy in is 100 times the big blind so for $1 a full buy in is $100 you will then need to multiply this figure by 10 to get your total bankroll, ie $1000.