A Comprehensive Guide to the Strat Trading

The Strat trading strategy, developed by Rob Smith, provides a structured approach for traders to navigate various market conditions effectively. 

It combines technical analysis, market psychology, and rigorous risk management to improve trading decisions and identify high-probability trade opportunities.

What is Strat Trading?

The Strat is a price action trading strategy that utilizes the full-time frame continuity to analyze and interpret market movements across multiple timeframes. This strategy helps traders understand and apply patterns in price action to predict future market movements reliably.

Key Components of The Strat

Let’s delve into Strat trading key components’ concepts to understand how they contribute to successful trading strategies:

1. Bar Scenarios

The Strat categorizes market actions into three scenarios:

  • Inside Bar (Scenario 1) – Represents consolidation. It occurs when the bar’s high and low are within the high and low of the previous bar.
  • Directional Bar (Scenario 2) – Indicates a clear market direction, either up or down, showing a higher high and higher low or a lower high and lower low.
  • Outside Bar (Scenario 3) – This occurs when the bar makes a higher and lower low than the previous bar, often signalling a potential broadening formation and a significant market move.

2. Multi-Timeframe Analysis

This involves examining charts from multiple timeframes to ensure continuity and consistency in the market’s direction. It helps in identifying stable trends and better trade entry and exit points.

3. Pattern Recognition

The Strat emphasizes recognizing continuation patterns and broadening formations to forecast potential market shifts effectively. This requires a keen understanding of candle patterns and their implications on price movement.

How to Identify Trade Opportunities

What are trade patterns and how to trade with patterns?

  1. Understand Full-Time Frame Continuity: Check if shorter time frames align with longer-term trends to confirm the strength and sustainability of the market movement.
  2. Spot High Probability Patterns: Use The Strat’s scenarios to identify patterns that suggest a continuation or reversal of trends.
  3. Technical Analysis Tools: Incorporate tools like RSI for additional confirmation on entry and exit points, ensuring trades align with momentum and structure shifts.

Trading Plan and Risk Management

  • Establish Clear Entry and Exit Points: Define precise criteria for entering and exiting trades based on identified patterns and scenarios.
  • Set Stop Loss Orders: Use stop-loss orders to minimize potential losses, placing them at strategic points that a market structure shift invalidates.
  • Manage Trade Sizes: Adjust trade sizes based on the risk assessment of each trade to balance potential gains with possible losses.

Ensure each trade decision aligns with the micro (individual bars and patterns) and macro (full-time frame continuity) views.

Continuously assess the market structure and adjust strategies as new information unfolds through price action and market dynamics.

Understanding Strat Patterns in Trading

One of the crucial elements of Strat trading is the formation of specific chart patterns. Start trading relies on unique 2-3 candle patterns, such as the 2-1-2 and 3-1-2, critical for predicting market behaviour. Mastering these patterns is essential for anyone looking to excel using the Strat methodology.

Before applying this methodology, you need to familiarize yourself with these formations. Here are some basic Strat candle combinations:

1-2-2 RevStrat Reversal

It starts with an Inside Bar and continues with two consecutive Directional Bars (2U or 2D). It indicates a strong reversal, especially if the Directional Bars signal a shift from the previous trend suggested by the Inside Bar.

2-1-2 Pattern

This pattern starts with a Directional Bar (either 2U or 2D). Then, it continues with the Inside Bar and concludes with another Directional Bar. The 2-1-2 pattern strongly suggests a potential trend continuation or reversal.

3-1-2 Pattern

Strat Patterns

The 3-1-2 pattern includes an Inside Bar, Outside Bar and finishes with a Directional Bar. It is crucial for spotting potential market shifts and broadening formations.

2U-2D Reversal

This pattern starts with an Upward Directional Bar (2U) followed by a Downward Directional Bar (2D). It suggests a potential reversal from an uptrend to a downtrend, often reflecting a change in market sentiment.

2D-2D Continuation

Characterized by consecutive Directional Bars Down (2D), this pattern indicates a strong continuation of a downward trend, with each successive 2D bar amplifying the bearish momentum.

3-2U Range Expansion Continuation

Start with an Outside Bar and then an Upward Directional Bar (2U). It shows an upward continuation, especially after consolidation or uncertainty, as shown by the Outside Bar.

Forex Example of Strat Trading

Trading with The Strat strategy in Forex involves understanding the key components of The Strat—bar scenarios, full-time frame continuity, and multiple timeframe analysis.

Let’s walk through a step-by-step example of how you might trade using The Strat strategy in the Forex market.

Step 1: Identify the Long-Term Trend

Start by looking at the daily chart of EUR/USD to determine the overall trend. Suppose the trend on the daily chart shows higher highs and higher lows, indicating an uptrend.

Step 2: Check the Time frame Continuity

Next, check the 4-hour and 1-hour charts to ensure they align with the daily chart’s uptrend. This confirms full-time frame continuity, where all significant timeframes agree on the market’s direction.

Step 3: Spot High-Probability Entry Points

 On the 1-hour chart, identify a Scenario 2 situation where a bar closes higher than the previous bar’s high, confirming a continuation of the uptrend.

Moreover, use technical tools such as the Relative Strength Index (RSI) to check if the market is not overbought, ensuring the upward momentum is still healthy.

Step 4: Plan Your Trade

Example: Trading EUR/USD with The Strat

  • Entry Point: Enter a long position at the close of the directional bar that confirms the trend continuation.
  • Stop Loss: Place a stop loss below the most recent low before your entry point to limit potential losses if the market reverses.
  • Take Profit: Set a take-profit level at a previous resistance level or use a risk-reward ratio of at least 1:2, locking potential profits.

Step 5: Manage Your Trade

As the price moves in your favour, consider moving the stop loss to break even or using a trailing stop loss to protect your gains.

 Keep an eye on the price action and upcoming economic events that might affect the EUR/USD pair, adjusting your strategy as needed.

What is the Purpose of the Strat Method in Trading

The Strat trading technique aims to enhance objective trading by minimizing emotional influences and focusing on market-driven data. 

This method primarily examines the relationships between individual candlestick patterns, their alignment with support and resistance levels, and their consistency across various time frames. 

It aims to clarify market movements by cutting through market noise, providing traders with an unbiased perspective.

The technique encourages trading decisions based on Strat patterns without emotional bias. Over time, traders can learn to easily recognize these patterns on price charts, as most Strat patterns are straightforward for professional traders to identify.


The Strat offers a comprehensive framework that helps traders systematically understand the complexities of financial markets

It not only aids in identifying trade opportunities but also emphasizes robust risk management to ensure sustainability in trading. By mastering The Strat, traders can enhance their ability to make informed and disciplined trading decisions across multiple asset classes, including forex and equities.

Traders interested in The Strat should learn and practice different scenarios and patterns, preferably in a simulated trading environment, before applying the strategy in live trading conditions.

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