As a poker enthusiast you must have noticed the popularity and respect a professional poker player gets to enjoy, apart from the bounty earned – not simply by luck but by the gaming skill acquired over time. Becoming a professional poker player, however, is not without its challenges, for the game itself demands a lot of discipline and hands-on practice to master the nuances. With the advent of the Internet, it is possible to play poker online without stepping out of one’s comfort zone. But it does limit your chances of learning the game by sharing the table with experienced players and watch them in action at a land-based poker room.
There are a few things you should know and be prepared to tackle before you hit that poker table such as:
Emotional and Physical Strain
Long hours at the poker table are quite common, especially at the big tournaments that can even go on for days. Keeping a tab on your emotional state when on a losing spree and on your physical health is an absolute must to get into the professional mindset. Poker, unlike other games, requires you to be fully invested in the game at all times, and any hand you play must be backed by sound logic. There should never be a hurried, distracted or an emotional reflex as this always tends to the tilt the scales against you. Taking a break during a game at permitted intervals provides you the time to clear your head, brush off any negative impacts, and get back to the table with renewed enthusiasm. Watch out for and tackle these challenges in the best possible manner!
Need for a Disciplined Approach
A sharp mind and timely decisions differentiate professional players from casual gamers. It is but natural for players to lose focus when tired, distracted, or under the influence of alcohol. The key here is to sit at the poker table only when you are in the right mindset to play the game. It is equally important that you set a stop-loss target and stick to it when losing money. Means there’s only so much money you can afford to lose each day, for the gaming experience to be profitable. Going on indefinitely may only lead to greater losses. Fold up when you must!
Training and Practice
Poker is more a game of honed skill rather than luck, especially if you plan to seriously pursue it. Hands-on experience is the best teacher. However, for those looking to quickly win big and quit, there are several learning options – right from videos and mobile apps to TV shows and personal coaching to suit your learning preferences. Online poker forums help share and learn techniques that can improve your gameplay.
Apart from following these online poker tips that can get you started, you need to chart out your online poker strategy as well to excel at the game.
Perfect Your Game
Getting your game reviewed periodically by a proficient trustworthy friend can help understand how others perceive your hand and how best you can improve it. Self-assessment too proves quite helpful. Either way, analysing your game can help refine your online poker strategy or come up with a new one altogether.
Study Your Opponent
Learning to study your opponent’s hand also offers great insights into the different response patterns of players, especially if you are sharing the table with a professional poker player. Also, make note of what image you create amidst other players and how it affects the course of the game.
Capitalise at the Right Time
It is a given that it’s the amateur players aka “poker fishes” who periodically fill the poker rooms with fresh funds. Your ability to identify amateur hands is bound to prove rewarding, as they are the ones likely to commit costly errors. Watch out for any weakness in the gameplay and capitalise at the right time to claim a win.
Choose the Right Table
Playing with professional poker players or regulars can prove valuable as it offers an opportunity to learn new techniques and game styles, but you may not have a chance to make real money as they are the experts. You do have a better chance of making money when pitted against amateurs as it is their mistakes that make you rich. But that turns out true only if you spot and make best use of their weaknesses. Take care to choose the right table that allows you to win and make money.
Getting yourself totally involved in the game will eventually get you there!