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Online Poker Primer

Online Poker Primer

Online Poker is a fun pastime. If you get good at it, you can even make some extra pocket change. But, to have the best online poker experience, I recommend you take some time and spend a little money. Now, I am no professional, but I can get you going in the right direction.

You need to develop a basic sense for what good poker is all about. You do this by reading some books, and watching videos. After you have the basics under your belt, you should get some software and start playing. There are several pieces of software which enhance your ability to play great poker. I’ll show you each of these.

Early on, it is helpful to get on board with some online training. The Poker Training Network will put you in touch with local players, instructional videos, and simulations which will improve your game. However, you also need to read several books.

Purchase these books and read them in this order:

  1. Harrington on Hold’em: Expert Strategy for No Limit Tournaments, Vol. 1: Strategic Play by Dan Harrington.
  2. Harrington on Hold’em: Expert Strategy for No Limit Tournaments, Vol. 2: Endgame by Dan Harrington.
  3. Harrington on Hold’em: Expert Strategy for No Limit Tournaments, Vol. 3: The Workbook by Dan Harrington.
  4. Sit ‘n Go Strategy by Collin Moshman.

Now, you are ready to play in tournaments. You know the value of starting hands, and understand the concept of tournament poker. So, time to sign-up at a poker site. Before you do, understand the concept of the rake and rakeback.

The rake is a percentage of every pot or tournament entry fee paid directly to the poker site. This is one of the ways they make money. Rakeback is when a player receives a percentage of the rack back for their own use. You get rakeback by using a rakeback site. So, do not sign up at any poker site without doing it through a rakeback site. I use Rake Update. Visit that site and follow their instructions. You’ll be set up in now time.

To play tournaments well, you need a little help. Tournament Indicator (TI) has all the tools you need to help you ensure your profitability. Buy and install TI. Now, log in to your poker site, find a tournament ($2 +.25-nine man sit n go) and register. When the tournament starts, start up TI and play your first tournament. I realize you don’t know all about TI yet, but after the next step, you will. I just want you to get your feet wet.

Go to pokersitandgoreport.com and sign up for Marty’s free videos. As each one comes out, watch them and you’ll learn how to apply the concepts learned in your reading and to use your new software. These tournaments teach you the discipline needed to excel in multi-table tournaments and cash games. I highly recommend you join the forum at tournamentindicatorforum.com. Now, its time to take on the next type of poker: The Cash Game.

The cards may be the same, but cash games are a different animal. To succeed, you should purchase these books:

  1. Harrington on Cash Games (How to Win at No-Limit Hold’em Money Games) Vol. 1 by Dan Harrington.
  2. Harrington on Cash Games, (How to Win at No-Limit Hold’em Money Games) Vol. 2 by Dan Harrington.
  3. Professional No-Limit Hold’em: Volume I by Ed Miller, Sunny Mehta, and Matt Flynn.
  4. Small Stakes No-Limit Hold’em by Ed Miller, Sunny Mehta, and Matt Flynn.

The last two books are serious professional level books. They will make your head spin. I reread them about every other month. Now, you need a different piece of software that handles cash games: Holdem Indicator. Buy it and never play without it. Sometimes, you’ll find yourself wanting to call, but HI will remind you why it is such a bad call. This is indispensible.

By this time, you may find you need more help fixing your play. I highly recommend you buy Holdem Manager. This software is a database engine that tracks your play and your opponents play. You can use its tools to find your leaks and plug them up.

I cannot end this article without saying something about bankroll management. Your bankroll is what you use to play poker with. If you do not take care of it, you will have a zero bankroll and you will not be able to play poker. What is the point? You manage your bankroll by playing in games that fit your bankroll. You need a bankroll of at least 30 times the buy-in for any game. This is because of variance. There will be times when you play everything perfect and a poor player will draw out on you. That is variance. You get your money in good, but a suck out happens. You will find yourself on losing streaks. Don’t panic! If you are playing the right stakes with the right bankroll, you’ll be able to sustain the variance. So, to play in $2.25 tournaments, you need $67.50. To play .01/.02 Cash games, you need $60.

I hope this little guide helps you get going in the right direction. Below, I have put all the links in a list to help make it easier for you.

See you at the tables,

Mario

LINKS

Training:

Poker Training Network

RakeBack:

Rake Update

Software:

Books:

  1. Harrington on Hold’em: Expert Strategy for No Limit Tournaments, Vol. 1: Strategic Play by Dan Harrington.
  2. Harrington on Hold’em: Expert Strategy for No Limit Tournaments, Vol. 2: Endgame by Dan Harrington.
  3. Harrington on Hold’em: Expert Strategy for No Limit Tournaments, Vol. 3: The Workbook by Dan Harrington.
  4. Sit ‘n Go Strategy by Collin Moshman.
  5. Harrington on Cash Games (How to Win at No-Limit Hold’em Money Games) Vol. 1 by Dan Harrington.
  6. Harrington on Cash Games, (How to Win at No-Limit Hold’em Money Games) Vol. 2 by Dan Harrington.
  7. Professional No-Limit Hold’em: Volume I by Ed Miller, Sunny Mehta, and Matt Flynn.
  8. Small Stakes No-Limit Hold’em by Ed Miller, Sunny Mehta, and Matt Flynn.

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