An Education at Live Poker Games

For many online players and others new to the live poker setting, the temptation can be to emulate the top players of the game by strapping on a pair of headphones to focus on the action, but there are many things that are missed in this practice. The single biggest difference between the online and live forms of the game is the interaction between the players and there can be much gained from simply paying attention to what is said during and in between the actual hands being played. Understanding this difference can lead to a different kind of education that can be found with online poker.

In terms of an advantage against opponents, listening to the table talk definitely has its merits. Many players will openly discuss their strategies about previous poker hands and even say what cards they had. By paying attention, an astute live player can build up a wealth of knowledge about how a person plays, information that can later be used against them in playing situations. In addition, when sitting at a new table filled with unknown players, the table talk will often give an indication of a player's experience as well as their skill level. However, the real benefits of table talk are not related to the game at hand at all.

At a typical poker table, the players will come from a wide variety of backgrounds and those that are not professional players will often have another occupation. In talking to players and being genuinely interested in their lives, a player may be able to build connections that help their life even when outside the table. An example would be a car salesman that plays poker during his off time. By talking to him, not only can a player maybe get a deal when they are ready to buy a new car, but they may also get some inside industry information about which models are the best and which represent the best value purchase. The best situation is a live player that frequently finds themselves playing against the same core group of players. It is true that poker is a game of psychological warfare, but there are definite advantages to talking to other players. Playing on a large online poker room such as PokerStars can be a great start to build up a poker education. With so many people playing, you can easily find a game to match your abilities and build up your skill levels.

For a beginning or bad player that will likely represent a professional player's main source of income, keeping them at the table is never a bad idea. As these types of players often sit down as much for the social aspect of poker as for the action of the game, engaging in casual conversation is a great way to keep them at the table for longer periods of time instead of wandering to the next blackjack or roulette table. The essential key is that it does not need to be approached as some kind of trick, but rather a fun way to be more personable with opponents that also increases a professional player's rate of return on their investment. In the game of live poker, too many players make the mistake of not finding out who their opponents are. This can be remedied with nothing more than a simple conversation.