What do you think of when you think of Blackjack players? Do you think of broad shouldered man with slicked back hair? A guy in a suit with a drink in his hand and a cigarette sticking out the corner of his mouth? Or maybe a woman with a cocktail dress on, a martini in hand, and styled hair? But you think someone with that casino sort of look or at least someone with style and some sophistication.
What about a mother?
Yes, that’s right, I said a mother.
I recently read an article about a woman who has made Blackjack her living. And she’s a mother on top of it. Makes you think about how those people really are when you get into a Blackjack game. For some people this isn’t just a game for fun. For some this is income, their livelihood. The woman in the article spoke of how much more committed you are to mastering Blackjack when it’s your living. She goes on to say how important it is practice and to memorize the strategies—you have to have a detailed and precise know-how to play Blackjack for a living. If you’re not committed you won’t make a living and, even worse, you’ll lose your money as opposed to making it.
And then how will you buy your bread, butter, and eggs?
What I liked about this woman’s story is that she’s just a regular person, a mom. She’s not some dolled up woman in a tight fighting cocktail dress and heels. She probably gets up in the money, makes breakfast, packs lunches, and sends her kids off to school. Maybe she does a little housework. And then she practices her Blackjack strategies for the coming weekend when she goes to a nearby casino to make her living. Quite the lifestyle. But what she shows us is that anyone can learn to play Blackjack and anyone with the commitment and drive to master the game can. Blackjack games aren’t limited to high rollers and swanky people. Blackjack can be played by you or me or moms.
What makes for a good Blackjack strategy?
Basic strategy is a good place to start, but is it enough to win?
Realistically, you’re going to need a combination of basic strategy and card counting. Initially you need to be comfortable enough with basic strategy so as not to need to constantly reference a chart—that’s that first thing for an effective blackjack game. Once you’ve got that down, throw a little card counting into your blackjack strategy.
No, that doesn’t mean memorizing the whole deck and the odds of a single deck versus multiple decks. Although you certainly can learn and employ a card counting strategy and, with enough practice, increase the power of your overall Blackjack strategy. Honestly, when you’re first beginning to play, that’s a lot of math and numbers to keep straight on top of remembering which basic strategy option to use for which card combinations. Keep the card counting portion of your strategy simple when first beginning to play Balckjack . This plays into your betting strategy as well
You know you want ten cards and aces. Think of how many tens and aces are in play based on how many decks your playing with. How many have already played? And how many are left? If there’s not a lot of tens and aces left keep your bets down. If you there’s still a decent amount left then your chances of receiving one is better, so raise your bet. That’s how to use simplistic card counting to guide your Blackjack betting strategy.
So at this point your Blackjack strategy is comprised of having the basic strategy charts memorized and using simple card counting to influence your betting strategy. This makes for a good Blackjack strategy for the average player. Keeping those in mind should help decrease the house’s favor, which should increase your chances of winning.
What’s the difference between playing blackjack and playing effective blackjack? It’s simple answer, one you may have even come across here and there. But in the lure of flashing lights and bright colors perhaps the answer was forgotten. The best way to play effective blackjack is practice.
Yes, I said practice. By now you’ve read about basic strategy and card counting, and you’re psyched that this is the game you can win. Blackjack will make you money. But in order to make that money you have to play blackjack effectively.
To do so means practice. You know there’s a basic strategy chart for blackjack—in fact, there’s two charts for: one for soft hands and one for hard hands. But are you really going to take those to the table with you?
Imagine you sit down with six other people, probably seasoned players. You’re dealt your cards. The dealer has a 7 and you have a hard 16. The first three people make their decisions. It’s your turn. What do you do? You whip out your blackjack charts. The other six people sigh—they’re playing with a beginner. One or two of them offer you advice. Maybe someone else mutters how the game is being held up. You get flustered. You stand. Next player’s turn. You take a peek at your chart. Oops, you should’ve hit. Not effective play.
How to avoid that? Play effectively! Practice first! Study the basic strategy charts, focus on hard hands first. Then visit an online casino, one that will let you play free blackjack online (most reputable sites have this option). Leave the chart face down on your desk. Try to remember what it advises. Play your hand, then check your chart, see if you played effectively. This way you aren’t faced with slowing down the game and upsetting other players—after all you’re in your own home, nobody can see you. Keep practicing until you don’t need check the chart to see if you played effectively—you know you did. This is how practice makes for playing an effective blackjack game.