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One of the wonderful things about poker is the multitude of styles that the game possesses. 

Two of the more common traits are known as Passive and Aggressive. Some players choose passivity as their modus operandi and some choose aggression. 

The very best players choose a style dependent on the player they are facing. They know when to play aggressively and when to play passively. 

The general rule of thumb is to play aggressively against passive players and play more passively against aggressive players. Let us take the Aggressive versus Passive angle first. 

If you are in a game with a passive player, then they are going to be folding a lot of marginal spots. The trait is not one that is known for the big fight. They go down easily and the towel is inside the ring more than out. 

When they have a hand, they let you know because they start fighting. This knowledge and understanding allows you to steal many pots away from them when you have a weaker holding. 

You do this by being more aggressive than they are. You raise and re-raise when you do not have it and believe they are very likely to fold.

When you face an aggressive player, it is often better to become more passive. Being passive doesn’t mean rolling over and dying. You are just rolling over to let them have a little tickle. Then, when you have the goods, you bite. 

To achieve the right balance, you cannot be as passive as the players we focus our aggression on. Instead, you are more of a Steady Eddie than a Passive Pansy. Always act like you know what you are doing, fold your trash and fight back when you know you have the goods.


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Last Updated 26 October 2018
Passive or Aggressive Poker