Today I want to talk to you about studying poker, and more specifically, sharing my study routine with you. This is especially useful if you don’t already have one, but if you do have a study routine, maybe you can take bits and pieces of this and make improvements on yours.
The thing that we have to keep in mind is that we’re not going to become the best poker player in the world overnight, or in a week, or even in a month. It’s going to take long periods of time. Even just becoming the best poker player you can be is going to take a long period of time, but if we can break this up into week-long sprints and we can say, “Okay, this week I’m going to try this leak, the next week another, the next week another,” if we can do that and keep improving our game and decreasing our poker leaks, we’re going to become better players over time.
The way that I set this up is through a week-long time box. With that said, let’s talk about the way that that week should be breaking down.
So where should you begin?
Well, at the very beginning of the week, you want to start by choosing your topic. So choose your major focus topic for the week. That’s not to say that you’re not going to work on other things simultaneously. Say you wanted to work on squeezing this week, you’re going to also be working on things like sizing that squeeze and hand-reading preflop and setting up for preflop, all those things. Choose one major topic and understand that you will touch on other things simultaneously.
Hand reading is the lifeblood of poker. Good players are always working to assign correct ranges throughout a hand, and the best players can narrow their opponent’s range with great precision. If you are not already working to hand read better in your 6max games – you are leaving heaps of money on the table.
To help you improve your hand reading skillset faster (or refine it if you are already pretty solid at it), I put together this range building video series for you. In it, we go street-by-street through a hand at 50NL 6max dissecting ranges and breaking down the logic and framework every step of the way. And don’t get blinded by the fact that we have KK – because hand reading becomes even MORE important when that damn Ace falls on the river! Continue reading
The average poker player goes through a very similar path of progression.
They start as a fish who calls too often and folds too rarely. Then they get punished for that and eventually learn that they need to fold some of those junk hands. And then eventually they learn how to put those junk hands back into their ranges, at least sometimes, in smart spots to generate extra profit. The issue is that most TAG and Nit players are stuck in the middle – folding too often for their own good.
To help you improve your range building process I created this mini-series where we dissect a hand together – going street-by-street and action-by-action to assign precise ranges. This is the actual process I use when studying poker off-table and exactly how my brain processes information in real-time…and you will get stronger with it the more you practice assigning ranges.
Hand reading is the cornerstone of solid poker. When you know what your opponent has, it’s far easier to apply pressure, hero call correctly, and take more profitable lines. Combos and blockers are huge assets when it comes hand reading, and when you have this skill hammered down you can dissect their range with absolute precision.
Let’s start by talking about blockers. A blocker is something that is very, very useful to understand when you’re counting combos, but if you don’t either of these two terms are let’s start with quick definitions: Continue reading
Poker is a game of math. The math can range from simple things like figuring out the size of the pot to very complex things like calculating the EV of multi-street plays. But poker is also a social/psychological game where tells, psychology, and dynamics come into play. Players that approach the game solely through the social lens are just as much missing a crucial element as players that solely approach the game mathematically. Like most things, balance is required to be a well-rounded player who can thrive at any table.
While most math-based players understand the value in the social side of the game (albeit, usually not giving it the credence it deserves – myself included years ago), social-focused players tend to ignore much of math side of the game. This is normally due to the fear that the math will be too complex, too cumbersome, and maybe even too nerdy.Continue reading
Truth be told, I’m a very visual person. I’m also a very mathematically-oriented person. So being able to visualize math-based things is crucial for me when trying to learn and use something.
So when I began studying hand ranges and learning how to exploit various ranges, I created a simple model to help me visualize this stuff easier. And while many things in poker can be complex, I knew my model needed to be simple enough to use in real-time. Which is why I began visualizing poker ranges in pie charts.
Pie Charts In Poker
A pie chart is a simple circle that contains multiple pieces (and each piece looks like a piece of pie!), and when you add up all the pieces they equal 100% of the circle. So my idea was to look at the entire pie as the complete range my opponent has, and then to chunk that pie into pieces representing different kinds of hand strengths.
There are very few things in poker that are more fun than shoving. And if you are considering doing more 5bet bluff shoving preflop or semi-bluff jamming postflop, then understanding the math behind it is crucial. In this video I explain when and how to expand the math to make sure you are solving the spot correctly. If you’d rather read the script of this video, read on below. Otherwise, turn the video to 720p and enjoy easy-to-digest complicated poker math!
Hello, and welcome to today’s Quick Plays video on advanced EV in poker. We’ve done another video on basic EV, but there are many situations in poker when a basic EV formula just doesn’t quite cut it. So in this video ill show you a more complex EV formula and how to use it with an example.
The basic EV formula we worked with in the past was EV = (%W*$W)-(%L*$L). So essentially what we stand the win multiplied by how often we’ll win…minus what we stand to lose multiplied by how often we’ll lose. If this seems confusing at all, please first watch the basic EV poker video and then come back to this one. Continue reading