Pacing And Leading

Who Is In Control Of This Hand?

This is a useful method of being able to control the behaviour of a person that you are trying to extract money from. This is a very similar tactic to how the likes of Derren Brown succeed.

The Set Up

Let’s say that the current min bet is $50 … the guy that you are attempting to control bets out to you in two fluid stacks of $25 next to each other.

You match this bet in the same two fluid stacks. Currently you are now Pacing.

If this is the guys normal betting pattern then he will feel confident when betting like this, and will especially feel confident subconsciously as you are matching his movements. This is the same as how flirting can involve “mirroring” the other persons behaviour, mostly done subconsciously to tell them that you are interested.

The Tell

Right now you have this guy controlled, all you have to do now is flip the switch. This is done very simply…

Let’s now say that you are sitting there with 2 pair after the turn card and you want to see if he has the straight, or if he is bluffing. Up to this point you have been betting out into him in his normal two or three fluid stacks motion.

You decide to bet into him; instead of betting in his style of two piles, just place your chips differently, either in one stack or throw them in…  now this is where you need to watch as you have just flipped the switch.

If he calls in the same manner as you then you most probably have the best hand and he doesn’t have the straight. If he calls in his normal manner then he clearly has a powerful hand and unless the river helps you then you should check or laydown your hand. Clearly, you don’t have to wait to the turn to do this.


If he switches from his normal comfort zone style of betting into you, then you now have control of them subconsciously and they are most probably bluffing, especially if he tries a raise here. However by him calling in his normal way and even you flipping the switch hasn’t put him then he still feels comfortable with his strong hand.

This works the same outside of poker. Find out by listening if someone is visually minded or acoustically minded. They will say things like “I hear what you’re saying”, or “sounds good to me” as opposed to “I see what you’re saying” or “looks good to me”) – then you can copy their style and gain control.

If you them want to change the subject onto something you want to talk about, say something in the opposing style. This will throw them and then you can start leading. It’s how psychologists get their information out of people.

One comment

  1. Thank you for pacing explanation


    Comment by BuckCannon on February 22, 2013 at 8:24 am

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