The answer to the question “how many hands per hour can an average player play?” can go anywhere from 60 hands per hour to 250 hands or more if multi-tabling.
It varies widely depending on a number of factors, counting cash games only, the main factors being:
- type of game: for example, a 6-max or full ring poker player will play a lower number of hands per hour, since each hand takes longer to play out because there are more people.
- multi-tabling: if a player plays at multiple tables at the same time (multi-table), then multiply the number of hands played per hour by the number of simultaneous tables.
In any case, playing online allows you to play many more hands per hour than playing live, which averages at around 30 hands per hour.
Number of hands per hour at different types of cash games
- Fast fold poker games are the fastest: after you fold, you are instantly seated at another table and don’t have to wait for the hand to play out. Fast fold poker is also called zoom, zone, or snap and obviously, this format isn’t possible in live poker. You can play up to 250 hands per hour in this format, the highest you can get across all types of poker games.
- 6-max cash games: up to 90 hands per hour, since you have to wait around for other people to make their moves. Cash game players usually take this time to multi-table.
- Full ring cash games: you will rarely play many hands per hour in this format since there is even more waiting than 6-max.
Multi-tabling: now multiply your hands per hour by 4, 10, or 20!
Multi-tabling can reach some nearly-insane levels: some players can play up to 20 poker games simultaneously! This can take multiple monitors and God knows how many cups of coffee.
Obviously, the quality of their decisions hurt because of that and it is mostly done at 6-max or full-ring games since you would have to wait anyway.
Fast-Fold poker players do this too, but to a more limited extent: usually up to 4 simultaneous tables. This way, the number of hands per hour a fast-fold player can achieve is up to one thousand (250 times 4 tables)!
Why you should probably not play that many hands per hour
If you don’t observe your adversaries and you don’t think about your decisions carefully, your win rate and hourly rate can be severely hurt. It is important to balance the number of hands played per hour with a decent win rate if you want to increase your hourly rate.
To figure out the best option for you, try talking to Donkhunter. They work with many professional players and have a team of experts that are always glad to help, for example, by suggesting poker rooms that have software that allows multi-tabling and the proper setup so you can increase your hourly rate and hands played per hour.