There are two basic types of grinding. Cash game grinding and tournament grinding. They are very different from each other and this article will focus on tournament grinding. If you are more interested in cash games grinding we recommend that you read our article that focus on cash or ring game grinding.
Tournament grinding is when you play a lot of single or multiplayer tournaments to build your bankroll. Grinding is not about winning big, even though that happens while grinding, it is about slowly and steadily building an ever bigger bankroll that allows you to play and grind at ever higher levels. It is not the most glamorous part of poker, nor is it the most fun but it is none the less an important part of most poker players careers. They grind to build their bankroll when they first start, to be able to afford to enter tournaments and buy stuff online, they grind to be able to play using higher stakes and they grid to rebuild their bankroll after a cold streak.
In tournament grinding you play a lot of tournaments. You should play tournaments that has a rather low buy in compared to your bankroll. If you risk too big a chunk of your bankroll on each tournament luck will have to big impact and there is a higher risk that you loose your money even if you are a strong player. Ideally you should enter tournaments that feature a buy in that is no more than 2% of you bankroll. Or to put it another way. You should be able to afford 50 buy ins at the level you choose to play. While tournament grinding, or cash game grinding for that matter it is very important that you remain disciplined. This is about making money and growing your bank roll not about having fun. You should therefore refrain from playing more expensive tournaments than your bankroll allows. The possible exceptions from this can be to play tournaments with a guaranteed prize pool and a low number of registered players. In other word when there is an over value in the tournament. Even then you should however normally not commit more than 10% of your bankroll to a single tournament. The exact number you can commit do however depend on how big the over value is. If there is a lot to gain and very few players registered it can be worth to risk a larger part of your bank roll but guaranteed tournaments that attract very few players are usually canceled so this situation is unlikely to arise very often.
Single table tournaments are often the best choice when you start grinding. This is due to several reasons. The most important reasons are that there usually is possible to find a single table tournament that is about to start in a few minutes, that it is possible to find and play several simultaneous and that it is usually easier to get into the money in single table tournaments. Single table tournaments usual also require less time allowing you to earn more money in the same amount of time than what you would be able to playing multiplayer tournaments. This is especially true since you need to place rather high in multitable tournaments before you earn a good multiple on your buy in. As your bankroll grows and you start playing tournaments with higher and higher buy ins, as will multiplayer tournaments become more and more interesting. This is partly due to the possibility of higher pay days and partly due to the selection of single table tournaments will become ever lower the higher the buy ins become.