How to Memorize Blackjack Basic Strategy

If you're a dud at numbers, you're in good company. So are many other blackjack players. But learning blackjack basic strategy does not have to be so hard despite that. Here are different ways to memorize basic strategy. Just remember that each casino has its own set of blackjack rules and they each call for a unique strategy.

Ways to Memorize Blackjack Basic Strategy


First, get a basic strategy card. You can get that online or buy hard copy cards for a few dollars. Copy them onto blank cards. On one side print the player's hand. On the other side, print the decision based on the dealer's hand.

For this exercise, draw up one card with the player's hand facing you. Tell yourself aloud what decision is to be made. Then look at the other side to see if you were right. When you become proficient, start timing yourself to see if you are getting any faster.

Fill in the Blanks

You can also memorize basic strategy by writing it down. Take a sheet of paper and divide it into two columns. On the left side, list the player's hands. On the right column, write the correct decision based on the dealer's up card. You should make many copies of the blank sheet if you want to repeat this exercise. Again, when you get used to it, start timing yourself.

You can also make it three columns instead of two. Print not only the player's hands, but also the possible dealer up card for each one. So then you will only write one correct decision for each situation, e.g. if you have a hard 17 and the dealer has a 6, what do you do?


When you are more experienced, practice dealing the cards as if you were playing blackjack by yourself. Deal two cards to yourself and one to the dealer. Then play it out as a blackjack game would.

You can modify this as follows: Keep the same player's starting cards, but change the dealer's up card. In other words, you are practicing decisions for that same player's hand.

Or, you can keep the dealer's up card instead and change the player's hand. You are then practicing for the dealer's up card and all possible player's hands.

You can also practice with blackjack software. Play for free and test your strategy at no cost. The computer isn't human so you can take as long as you want making decisions!


You don't have to worry about timing yourself when you are just starting. This is supposed to be fun, so start slowly in the beginning. But eventually you will need to think and play faster. You wouldn't want to slow down the game in a real casino especially if you plan to move up to more advanced strategies like card counting and shuffle tracking. Use a wristwatch or, better, a stopwatch to time yourself. If you have a mobile phone with a timer on it, you can use it too.

Blackjack basic strategy is essential to success. With these exercises, you should be able to memorize it. It may take a while but it is worth the effort as you will see.