View Full Version : What is a downswing?

04-18-2005, 01:25 PM
What is a downswing in probabilistic terms? Qualititatively, I notice the following factors:

Poor action with good hands
Lots of action with mediocre hands
Poor starting-hand distribution
Big favorites loosing to underdogs frequently

I have bottomed out of a 150BB downswing, which is the first significant one I have encountered. Fortunately I had 450BB at the start, so I'm not freaking out or tilting, but I would like to understand what's happening. Thank you for your comments.

04-18-2005, 04:34 PM
With all of the bright minds around here, I'm surprised that no one has replied. Is this post still-born or what?

04-18-2005, 04:34 PM
If you are playing NL, 150 BB is not a downswing.
If you are playing limit, i do not know /images/graemlins/smile.gif

I think there are many, many possible reasons for a downswing. If you take a close look at almost any aspect of poker, you will encounter odds and probabilities. If any one of these go through a cluster of extreme values, either for better or worse, it will have an effect on your profit. If you play long enough, all kinds of strange effects could, and will, take place.

I've heard of people not hitting their set on the flop with a pocket pair for 50 pairs in a row. I've heard of a pro that showed -EV for AA over 10K hands. I don't know if these stories are true, but i guess it can all happen.

Edit: i posted a question in here about flush draws. The reason for this is that i saw an unusual amount of them today, and lost to them. I gave them bad odds to draw to their flushes but my betting only made bigger pots that were harder to get away from, and they hit their flush every time. It cost me 100 BBl. Another 20BBl were lost at 200NL where i called a 40$ all-in bet PF with KK. I lost because his A9 caught an ace on the flop. I all happens sometimes. When it all happens in a short period of time, it's a downswing.

04-18-2005, 05:25 PM
What exactly is your question? One possible definition of a "downswing" in probabilistic terms is this: if X(n) is your net profit after n hands (a stochastic process), then a downswing is a portion of the process {X(n):a<=n<=b} whose maximum value is X(a). You could refine this definition if you like. For example, you might require that the minimum value be X(b). Or you might require that the maximum be attained only at n=a. However, you probably wouldn't want to require that X is monotone on [a,b].

But more to the point: what is your definition of a downswing and do you have a specific probability question about it? Incidentally, you may be interested in this thread (http://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/showthreaded.php?Cat=&Number=2041266&page=&view=&s b=5&o=).

04-18-2005, 09:15 PM
Thank you, this is pretty close to what I was looking for.