Continuation Bet

Have you ever raised with KQ on the button, got called, and wondered what to do on A92 rainbow flop? Continuation bet is the answer for this dilemma. It was the first play I learned early in my poker career and it converted me from a losing to winning poker player.

Continuation bet

Continuation bet is a bet made on the flop after you raised preflop, regardless of your hand strength.

The rationale behind continuation bet (or simply c-bet) is that your opponents will miss the flop over 60% of the time and they will have to fold to your bet. As the preflop raiser, they are going to give you credit for your hand, when you continuation bet on the flop.

Optimal continuation bet sizing

The “industry” standard for the size of a continuation bet is around 2/3 of the pot. Most of the time you will miss the flop and your continuation bet will be a bluff (or semi-bluff). A bluff bet with a size of 2/3 of the pot needs to work only 40% of the time to be profitable.

You should use the same bet sizing with your made hands, draws, and total air. This way your opponents will not receive any extra information about your hand and more often they will be left guessing and making mistakes against you.

However, mindlessly continuation betting 100% of the time is rarely going to be profitable, unless you play at microstakes. You will need to take into consideration several factors before you decide whether to c-bet or not.

Opponent type

Continuation betting against a calling station without a made hand is like setting money on fire as they will call you with anything. C-bets are also not very effective against good thinking players that will be aware of your high continuation bet frequency and they will be floating you very often.

C-bets works best against average tight players capable of folding their weak made hands. Some poker statistical programs can provide information about your opponents fold-to-c-bet percentage. Personally I continuation bet 100% of the time against players that fold to 60% of c-bets and more.

Flop texture

Flop texture greatly influences your chances to get away with continuation bets successfully. C-bets work best on dry flops, i.e. flops with no obvious straight and flush draws, and when they contain one face card (ace to jack).

Good flops examples:


Bad flops examples:


The last example (222) is a bad flop for you (unless you have AA-JJ or the remaining 2) because your opponents will often call your preflop raise with small and medium pairs (22-TT). They are not going to fold their full houses to a continuation bet (see Zeebo theorem).

Number of players on the flop

Continuation bet brings best results when you are heads up on the flop. In multi-way pots, the probability that someone will hit a piece of the flop is significantly higher and c-bet is much less efficient.

I suggest that you continuation bet only with good made hands (at least top pair with good kicker). The only exception can be when you have position on your opponents and you know that every one of them folds to c-bets a high percentage of the time.


You can continuation bet more often when you have position on your opponent. Being in position gives more information about your opponent’s hand. When they check to you, they are likely to have missed the flop and will fold to your continuation very often, unless you know that they love to check-raise all the time.

On the contrary, you should continuation bet less when you do not have position in the hand as your information about your opponent’s hands will be limited.

Conclusion on continuation bet

Continuation betting is simple yet very effective weapon that you should definitely incorporate in your poker arsenal. Just evaluate all the factors I described above before making a c-bet and your winnings will flourish.

More articles on specific poker plays:

 Check raise
 Double barreling
 Squeeze play
 Stealing blinds

Go back to the Online Poker Strategy.