What Does Grind Mean?
In poker, a player who is playing tight and picking up small wins is said to be grinding their play. To grind is to win consistently but slowly. It is usually a deviation from normal play, or a term used to describe a player who has won a large amount over time, but who has not been seen to make any large bets. Therefore, saying a player is ‘grinding’ their play might imply they are using some form of betting system in order to win.
Grind Definition Explained
Poker players who win little but often are said to be ‘grinding’. The term or grinding definition comes from ‘grinding away’ at something – in this case, the poker table. Winning by small amounts can take a lot of time and requires work by the player – hence the term. When used, ‘grind’ usually means someone is playing differently to how they usually would, either at tables with smaller minimum values or through far tighter play of the hands. It can also refer to a player who is known to win big regularly, but who is rarely or never seen making a large bet. For this reason, a player said to be ‘grinding’ is likely to be using a system of some kind, such as card counting or differential betting.
Other kinds of betting, such as casino table games or slots games, will borrow the phrase for a similar use. Any player might be said to ‘grind’ their play if they bet little and often, and come away from the game in profit at the end of play. ‘Grind’ implies a large amount of time is being spent at the games in order to achieve the win and suggests that the payoff is low compared to the effort put in by the player.