Yesterday I talked a little bit about PokerStars and the games there. In addition, I noticed that Carbon poker room has some razz tables that actually go up to $1000/$2000 stakes. Now for practicing the game, both places offer free chips or “play money” to use on free tables. This is actually an excellent way to practice the game with no risks of losing money and I would highly recommend doing this if you are learning how to play razz.
So when you practice razz poker, all you need to do is find any room that is using play money. Typically, there will be about 6 players in each room and the game is more casual. There are a few warnings that you should know about if you are going to seriously practice the game as a way to build experience and skill in razz.
The first thing to watch out for is the fact that many people in these “fake” rooms will not be playing as seriously as they would be with real money. So bluffing and other strategies will be irrelevant since players will just call your bets to see what happens in the end. This really isn’t effective practice because no one is really taking the game seriously. Although, these rooms are perfect if you are just learning the basics of the game, the rules and how to play.
If you already know the basics and want to get good at strategy and bluffing, then I would recommend moving to the micro-limit stakes in the $0.04/$0.08 rooms. These are the lowest money limits available at pokerstars.com. When there is real money at play, even small stakes, about 90% of the players will become serious and you will start learning some actual razz poker skills. Obviously, the higher the stakes get, the tighter players become and the more serious the game starts to be played. These are just a few things you should keep in mind as you begin practice exercises.