Win More Money vs a Single Limper NOW!

It’s fish frying time!
You are about to learn how absolutely crush a recreational player who frequently limps.
This article covers both preflop and postflop play versus a single limper, focusing mainly on flop strategy.
Preflop Strategy
Every player approaches limping differently — limping a wider or narrower ranges of hands. Shifting your strategy to counter these specific limping tendencies is how you can really exploit a limper.
But you won’t always know how a player approaches limping, like when you first sit at a table. So, you’ll need a baseline vs. limper strategy to use as a starting point, which you can then shift based on the variables that come into play.
Baseline vs. Limper Strategy
This baseline range is based on the assumption that you are up against a thinking player who is limping thoughtfully. (That’s not to say he’s limping with a balanced range — very few players in the world pull off such a strategy.)
By “limping thoughtfully”, I mean that he is limping with borderline hands that he doesn’t deem strong enough to raise (hands like A4o in late position, K6s from mid-late position, 65s from early-mid position) and the occasional traps mixed in.
Now, let’s get to the range. Here are the hands that I would always raise vs. a limper If I had no information and I was sitting in the hijack position or earlier (you can play looser from the cutoff and button):
Red = Raise, Blue = Fold
You may be thinking that this range is tight, and it is, but let me explain why it’s a great baseline strategy for raising over an unknown limper:

This strong range will do a good job hitting hands and extracting value, which is the main way to make money from a limper. 
There are still several players behind that can 3-bet or cold-call, reducing your equity in the pot.
You don’t know if the player limp-folds a lot or plays weak postflop, so you can’t know for sure if weaker hands will profit as raises.

When you lack information about all of these variables, it’s best to stay safe and play tight. 
You can start adding more hands depending on these factors:

Note that while some of these rules allude to playing tighter, I don’t recommend removing any hands from the baseline range above. In other words, the baseline range is the absolute tightest you should play vs. a limper.
Postflop strategy
Now that you have a good idea of the hands with which you should raise over a limper, let’s talk about playing postflop, specifically the flop.
The two following example flops will serve as representatives for similar types of flops. In both hands, you will be on the button playing against a hijack limper.
Assume that your opponent is a thinking player that will limp-call with somewhat justifiable hands such as:

Weak to medium strength Ax hands (both suited and offsuit)
Offsuit broadways
Offsuit connectors (like 98, 87, 76)
Suited connectors and 1-gappers (like 76s, 75s, 64s)
Random high card suited hands (K7, Q8, J7, etc.) 

In this first hand:
Online $2/$5. 6-Handed. Effective Stacks $500.
Hero is dealt two cards on the button 
UTG folds. Hijack calls $5. Cut-Off folds. Hero raises to $20. 2 folds. Hijack calls.
Flop ($47): 8♠ 5♦ 4♠
Hijack checks. Hero…
Let’s break down your range into 2 parts: value bets and potential bluffs.
Value bets: Against weaker players on these types of low boards, you will want to play your value range very straight-forward and fast. Widen your value range and go for a big bets (anywhere from 66% to 105% pot) and double barrels very often to extract value immediately.
If the limper seems like an unaware player — and most limpers are — you should look to size your bets based on the strength of your hand. With a very strong hand like QQ, for example, an 80%+ pot-sized bet is good, but with a marginal value hand like 77, you can bet smaller, say 66% pot. 
Bluffs: If the limper seems to play fit or fold postflop — and most limpers do — you can exploitatively widen your bluffing range to more than just the “natural” bluffs (such as gutshots, open-enders and flush draws).
What hands should you add to your bluffing range? Hands such as 2 plain overcards make sense, which will find themselves in effective barrel spots on many of the overcard turns. Plus, having 6 outs to turn top pair isn’t so bad.
There’s another exploit you can use vs. unaware limpers — something you should absolutely never do against a solid thinking player: reduce your bet size when bluffing. Betting a smaller amount, somewhere between 50% and 60% pot, gives you better pot odds and takes advantage of the often inelastic ranges of weak players.
Even if the limper does adjust correctly to your small bet size (by calling more often), you still benefit because the limper’s range on the turn becomes weaker than usual, rendering your double barrels more effective. 
Now, let’s take another type of board on which you should play slightly differently:
Online $2/$5. 6-Handed. Effective Stacks $500.
Hero is dealt two cards on the button
UTG folds. Hijack calls $5. Cutoff folds. Hero raises to $20. 2 folds. Hijack calls.
Flop ($47): A♠ 9♦ 3♣
Hijack checks. Hero…
Value bets: you can use the same concept as in the first hand. Namely, the stronger the absolute value of your hand, the bigger you can bet.
Bluffing is a bit different on this board because there aren’t any overcards that can come, which makes betting on the bigger side a less attractive option. When your opponent misses this board, it doesn’t matter if you bet $15 or $30. He will likely fold almost every hand that missed the flop because none of them have 2 overcards.
This is in stark contrast to the last example, a board on which he is very likely to have at least 2 overcards (if not a gutshot or better). Since most hands will miss this flop, you can attack your opponent by betting with every missed hand in your range for a $15 (roughly 30% of the pot).
Wrapping up
Like with every situation in poker, there are a lot of nuances that come into play when trying to decide on the best line of action vs. a limper. You will need to really apply your logic to each situation and try to be as realistic as possible in determining how your opponent will react to different bet sizes and then calculate what is your best course of action.
Remember, the very exploitative advice in this article — particularly about tailoring your bet sizes — is meant to be used against weak, unaware players. Using such strategies against decent opponents may lead to you getting exploited if/when they figure out what you’re doing.
Hopefully you feel more comfortable playing against limpers after reading this article. If you have any questions or feedback please leave a comment section down below!
Til’ next time, good luck, grinders!

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