An Introduction to Spin & Gos

An Introduction to Spin & Gos

I was playing Tournaments for the first decade of my career. But after my first child was born, I searched for an alternative format because I couldn’t play all night anymore and needed something more flexible. I remembered a friend telling me about a new format called Spin and Gos. Back then, I thought it was pure gamble and probably not profitable—a weird invention by the poker sites.

Well, I couldn’t have been more wrong. It’s a wonderful game, full of action with highly underrated strategic depth. Eight years later, I still play Spins, coach them for GTO Wizard, and run a Spin and Go community and school. Let’s show you around in Spin city and get you settled in by covering the following topics:

  • What they exactly are
  • Similarities and differences with other game formats
  • Why it’s a great form of poker
  • For whom this might be a good fit

What Are Spin and Gos?

Unlike traditional poker Tournaments (MTTs) or Sit & Gos (SNGs) that feature a fixed prize pool based on the number of entries and buy-ins, Spin and Gos boast a dynamic prize pool determined by a random multiplier at the start of each tournament.

This unique feature can dramatically increase the potential payout, sometimes offering up to $1M from a buy-in of $5, making it possible to win life-changing sums of money from relatively low stakes. This is probably the greatest appeal of the format to recreational players nowadays.

An Introduction to Spin & Gos

Importantly, the lower multipliers result in “winner takes all” tournaments. Whereas games with 10x multipliers and higher award prizes to 2nd and 3rd place as well, introducing an ICM factor into these games.

Flash vs Regular Spins

Well, there are actually two forms of Spin and Gos:

  • The standard Spin and Gos or Expressos, which start with 25bb and usually have 2-3 minute blind levels.
  • And the so-called Flash Spins or Nitros, which begin with a 15bb starting stack and only 1 minute blind levels.

Almost every poker site nowadays has adopted the Spin and Go format, but they all have different names for them. The structures also slightly differ across all sites.

A frequently debated topic in poker circles is the profitability of Flash spins. Due to their quick pace, many believe them to be more a game of luck. However, they can be highly profitable in terms of hourly earnings. Alongside a solid understanding of GTO strategies and knowledge of population tendencies, the ability to adapt to various player types, multi-tabling, and maximizing volume and rakeback are all crucial elements of Flash mastery.

An Introduction to Spin & Gos

Flash vs Regular Spin and Gos (as implemented by Pokerstars)

Comparison With Other Game Formats


The format most similar to Spins is Heads Up hyperHyper
Poker term that refers to the fastest blind level structure in tournaments.
Sit and Gos (SNG). Half of the game in Spin and Gos essentially mirrors a HU hyper SNG, with players using the same ranges preflop and postflop. Consequently, many former HU hyper players transitioned to Spins as they gained popularity. Yet, the transition was challenging for some due to the 3-handed aspect of the game. Myself and others found the switch from MTTs relatively smooth, especially for those well-versed in blind vs blind situations. You won’t feel out of place in the Spin and Go format if you are familiar with these dynamics, as many spots, including BTN vs BB, play very similarly, and MTT players should be quite experienced at navigating short-stacked situations.


Differences do exist, however. For example, MTTs feature antes, and while some sites offer Spin and Gos with antes, most do not. The ICM factor, present in high multiplier games, is another distinction. These games are rare, with over 95% of Spin and Gos adopting a “winner takes all” format, reducing the impact of ICM.

Would This Fit Me? The Strong Suits of Spins!

I think it doesn’t really matter what format you are currently playing; you might find a liking for Spin and Gos. The beauty of the format is its flexibility. As I mentioned in the intro, the main reason for me to start playing Spin and Gos was that I simply couldn’t play for 8-12 hours straight, 5-6 times a week. Spins were the perfect format for me. You can schedule your playing hours. You can plan your workday around your life and not your life around your workday.

MTT vs Spin & Go – Why Not Both?

Another option is to combine formats. What I personally did for around 5 years was to play Spins on weekdays. This covered all my bills I had to pay and more, which reduced financial pressure quite a bit, but every single Sunday, I still played MTTs. And of course, also during the major online poker series. So, there is no need to decide. Spin and Gos can complement your main format quite well.

Also, what I found is that learning Spins actually enhances the MTT skillset a lot as well. You will have an edge on basically every MTT-only player heads up, and you will feel way more confident playing in blind vs blind and BB vs BTN situations.

An Introduction to Spin & Gos


In summary, Spin and Gos stand out as a flexible and engaging poker format that caters to a wide range of players. Whether you’re looking for a schedule-friendly option, a new challenge, or a way to improve your poker skills, Spin and Gos have something to offer. My own experience moving from MTTs to Spins shows how this format can easily fit into your life and even enhance your abilities in other poker games. Players can enjoy the best of both worlds by blending Spin and Gos with other formats, gaining valuable skills and potentially boosting their win rate. Ultimately, Spin and Gos prove that poker can be both fun and strategically rewarding, making them a great choice for anyone looking to diversify their poker play.

Wizards, you don’t want to miss out on ‘Daily Dose of GTO,’ it’s the most valuable freeroll of the year!

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Beldarion is co-founder and head coach of Team Bas Poker: Spin & Go School. He brings nearly two decades of professional poker experience and 1500+ hours of Spin & Go coaching worldwide.

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