The percentage of hands you should play in Poker will vary depending on certain factors. These factors include your relative position at the table, the size of your stack, and the kind of opponents you’re playing against. When looking at a hand that you’re dealt, you should consider all of these factors before deciding whether or not to play your starting hands or not.
Your relative position at the table is arguably the most important factor when making your decision as it influences whether or not you’ll be in a position or out of position for the rest of the hand, as well as the ranges that your opponents will be playing back at you with.
The earlier your position, the tighter your opening range should be and as you get further round the table you should be adding hands to these initial early position ranges. From an early position at a 9-handed table, you should be playing around 12–14% of hands. This range is going to be made up of pocket pairs, strong Ax hands, and strong broadway hands such as KQ.
As we move towards the middle position we can add more suited connectors and suited Ax hands, and as we get closer to the button we can add more offsuit hands. The reason we can widen our ranges as we get closer to the button is that there are fewer players to act behind us that can defend against our raise.
Our stack size matters when playing hands as certain types of hands benefit from certain stack sizes. Hands that have the potential to make very strong hands such as pocket pairs (flop a set) and suited connectors (make straights/flushes) benefit from deeper stacks as we won’t often make our hand but when we do we have the potential to win a big pot.
Hands such as strong Ax and broadway hands benefit more from shallower stacks as they often make good top pair hands that are good for winning smaller pots.