How can you become a better poker player? Improve your ability to focus. If you go around casinos and observe the best poker table players, you will notice that they can concentrate for long periods. Knowing about c-bets, check-raise strategy, and other similar concepts are great. However, your chances of winning will improve substantially by learning to concentrate. Practice these five tips before sitting down to your next poker table set.
1. Hide your phone
There can be many distractions. However, the biggest distraction is your phone. Observe yourself - how many times do you catch yourself checking your phone while playing poker? More tournament players are putting their phones away to give their full attention. Without their phones, they can win more by moving to the later stages of the game.
How can you do the same?
Break the attachment to your phone gradually. Pratyush Buddiga, a coach for the Upswing Tournament Master Class, broke the habit by starting his day with one hour of not using the phone. Most people reach out for their phones for fear missing out on the latest news. However, that fear will go away once you realize that no one wants to start their day with bad news.
While playing poker, turn your phone to “airplane mode” or turn it off completely. Focus instead on ranging other players when you are not in hand. Observe other players’ strategies by paying close attention to their showdowns. Instead of looking out for phone notifications and messages, seek opportunities to up your game.
Consider having the best folding poker table at home with USB chargers to keep your phone out of sight.
2. Listen to music and take a break
For some, music keeps them focused. Aside from improving your mood, music takes your attention away from your phone. Choose music that makes you feel energetic and positive.
On live poker tournaments, you need to take an average of two-hour breaks. Use this time to recharge. Improve your circulation by standing, stretching, and walking around. Your focus level will improve after the break. If you feel tense, try listening to relaxing music.
3. Pace yourself
For tournaments that take many days, it can be exhausting. The first day is when you can focus 100%. For the following days, however, you may lose track of everything.
Some poker players go on “autopilot” mode for the first few days by not paying close attention to every hand. Instead, they save their energies for the latter days of the tournament. Every poker player decides on what strategy works best for him.
If you are joining a shorter event, aim for the best by giving full attention to the game.
Successful people, from poker players to CEOs, recommend meditation to improve focus. For live players, concentrating is very important to ignore the multiple distractions in a busy casino. Meditation also reduces stress levels and improves blood circulation.
Before your poker game, try the guided meditations offered by phone apps.
Practice these five tips if you want to be the best poker player. In all areas of life, the best way to succeed is to keep your focus always.
Think that you are ready to get your very own professional poker table? Check out our list of the 9 Best Poker & Card Tables of this year.