Ever go to a bookstore and browse through the poker books? I don’t know about you, but as soon as I start to see a lot of mathematical formulae in the book, I close it and move on to the next one. That’s not to say that those books aren’t any good. I just find a lot of math to be intimidating.
Here’s the thing. While there is surely a need to understand some basic math if you want to become a winning poker player, you don’t need to know that much. And what you need to know is very, very basic arithmetic that you probably already learned by the sixth grade.
Let’s discuss a topic I feel many “professionals” need help with, which is how to treat poker like a profession. One of my favorite quotes that comes up at the beginning of Elliot Roe’s Mental Game podcast is, “If you treat it like an amateur, you should expect amateur results.” This is one of the most applicable quotes to poker that I’ve heard in a long time regarding how many players treat their poker games. They don’t study, they are on their phone the entire session, and they fail to keep accurate records, among many other things. Let’s discuss a few key things that if you are an amateur will help you be more professional while playing, or if you are already a professional, hopefully will help you recognize areas you can improve in professionalism.
“My biggest problem lately is how bad I’ve been running.” “You’re not running bad. You’re playing bad,” I say, as I peel through their statistics.
As you can imagine, this conversation doesn’t always go swimmingly. Yet, it happens quite often when I’m coaching. People will come to me hoping they can get some new plays to jolt their game. They tell me they’re running bad. I then look under the hood and find they’re making some key mistakes. What are those mistakes? The most common ones I see are these three:
What do you do when you lose your entire bankroll? It’s not a situation anyone wants to be in, but it happens - especially to newer players who may not understand the intricacies of bankroll management.
Here’s the thing about an aggressive bankroll building strategy: When you’re trying to build it as quickly as possible, it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy. If you’re doing well, and coolering people or your coin flips are working, you’re going to be building it super fast because you’re putting a lot of your money in play. But as soon as you lose one big plot, you’re done. You just keep chasing the loses. This is why it’s important to have self-control when it comes to big wins and big losses - but we’ll get to that in a bit.
Habits are so powerful that it’s not an exaggeration to say that they are the key to success. Your habits determine everything from how much money ends up in your bank account to the size of your waistline. Your habits have the power to determine the quality of your life.
Many people find that breaking bad habits and creating new, more positive ones is a near impossible task. That’s because most people use ineffective habit building strategies. The most common ineffective approach: trying to go cold turkey while relying on willpower to force the necessary changes.
Willpower doesn’t work unless you’re incredibly motivated, and motivation isn’t very reliable. It’s here one moment and gone the next. So, what should you do instead?
You can create new habits more effectively if you avoid the most common mistakes:
The implementation of big blind ante is all the craze in tournaments right now. In this format, instead of every player individually anteing, the big blind antes for everyone, often 1 big blind total. In today’s article, we will discuss the issues being discussed pertaining to the BB ante and required strategy adjustments.
D&B has just published my poker book for beginning, intermediate, and losing poker players: Winning Poker in 30 Minutes a Day. I think it is just the right tool for a player who is either intimidated by the prospect of regularly playing poker in a casino, or by the player who has not yet mastered the ability to consistently win. As the author, I’m biased of course.
Even so, though I break down the task of learning to win into 32 exercises that take no more than 30 minutes a day, I can still see some readers left intimidated at the prospect of having to read an entire book to make progress at the poker table. With that in mind, I am summarizing what it is you’ll actually learn in this book – in an attempt to make it simpler, easier, and surely less intimidating.
A year or two ago, I got really into Pot-Limit Omaha (PLO). Why PLO? Well, many of the higher stakes games here in Florida are PLO. In PLO, you always flop something, so the pots get huge, and that attracts the gamblers. Oh, and did I mention that most people are terrible at the game? If there are better reasons to love PLO, I can’t come up with any.
There was one more reason I got really into PLO. Over the last ten years while running my No-Limit Hold’em training site, Advanced Poker Training, I’ve gotten at least 1000 emails asking for a (PLO) training site. How hard could it be, right? (Answer: Very Hard!) The result of my efforts is the new Omaha Poker Training. Although it doesn’t have quite the extensive feature set yet, the core product is a 9-max and 6-max simulator against virtual opponents who give you advice along the way. Check it out.
Creating a solid environment to play poker is just one of the many edges that can help you win - and win consistently. Your environment is integral to your results, but it’s often overlooked - even by some of the most talented players out there. No matter how good you are at the game, if you don’t feel good when you play, you’re bound to make some poor calls out of frustration. It’s like trying to run with a pebble in your shoe. Sure, you can do it for a few blocks, maybe even a couple miles, but if you’re in it for the long haul, that pebble is going to be all you can think about and it’s going to affect the quality of your run.
Here’s what you need to consider when building your ultimate space:
Making the transition from a fledging player to a regularly winning champ isn’t always seamless. A lot of people are drawn to poker by what seems like easy money. The truth is it takes a lot of hard work and time to make winning a consistent occurrence. And the truth is there is no specific timeline that will determine when you make the transition, but here are a few tips that will help you along the way…
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