One of the most appealing aspects of poker is that it seems like a relatively simple game to learn. And, on the surface, it is a simple game to learn. It is a game based on basic mathematics but it is also one that you never stop learning from. You just have to delve a little deeper under the skin.
When a player decides to start taking the game a little more seriously, they will usually purchase a number of poker books, join an online training site or go on the search for a poker training guide. Unfortunately, no such guide really exists. If it did we would either all be very rich or the games would be too tough because everyone would know how to play perfectly. And how could anybody win money from a game like that?
There are some great books available to beginners. Many of them have been written by staples of the poker world such as Doyle Brunson and Daniel Negreanu.
There are also thousands of video guides available on YouTube and these can be really helpful. They are short and concise and can provide valuable tips and strategies. But if you want to know how to play specific hands in specific situations but there is no substitute for poker experience.
And the only way to gain that kind of poker experience is to start playing as much as possible. Start small. Stick to a low limit table and really consider each move and hand that you play. You will probably fall prey to some of the common mistakes poker players make, but you will learn from them.
As you start to develop a better knowledge of the game you can take your chances in an online poker tournament. This way you get to play far more hands in a shorter period of time. And generally, the prize pools are a lot better in the online tournaments.
It is no coincidence that the better online poker players also play dozens of tables simultaneously. They do this to make money first and foremost. But this experience means some of them will play more hands in a five year period than real-world poker players do in their entire careers.
Doyle Brunson once stated that each and every day he sits at the poker tables he learns something new. Even if he is playing with the same group of players he has done for many years. One of them will look at their cards slightly differently, one will make a slightly different bet size, it could be anything, even learning something about himself.
By all means, read some of the better strategy books out there or join a training site. Better yet, find a decent poker forum and discuss various strategies with other like-minded poker players. But once you have done this take some money and play some poker in an attempt to apply your new found knowledge.
If you play enough poker you will come across similar situations day in day out. You will know exactly what to do so will rarely be left in difficult or confusing spots. As a result, your poker playing will be a much more comfortable experience.
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