Whether small, large, male, female, young or old, poker is a universal game that is for everyone. Today, we can count over 100 million players worldwide, a figure in perpetual expansion. This huge popularity is in part due to the advent of the internet, rapid connections, fast computers and mobile devices. Gamers can also learn through videos that can easily be found online and hone their skills quickly as the internet permits endless gameplay and access to boundless information.
Some online and live poker players have now become famous at a very young age; these include names such as Chris Moorman, Annette Obrestad, Mike “Timex” McDonald, Yevgeniy Timoshenko, and James Akenhead, to name a few. Amongst these, we find gamers who first encountered success online, such as Annette Obrestad who won more than $800,000 in just 18 months at just 19-20 years of age while playing on sites like Pokerstars, UltimateBet and Full Tilt Poker.
Can I make a profession at online poker?
The answer is obviously yes, as long as you are ready to put the effort and the dedication. After all, earning money happens to be the main reason why many players are getting into this game. However, even if it is sometimes possible to qualify for a major tournament (EPT, WSOP, etc) for just a few dollars, keep in mind that there are many more losers than winners at online poker.
But if you are to earn a living at poker, this means that you must behave like a pro. The rules to develop as an online pro player are the same as playing live: Learning, Discipline and Practice. This means that you must read poker books, keep track of your performance, play within your budget, know when to leave the table (please ignore the temptation to play that extra hand to ‘recuperate’ your lost bets; this is a trap that rarely works,) make sure the game remains fun and play, play, play. Remember that pro players will play tens of thousands of hands per month and many players hit and surpass the million hand mark per year. Poker is the center of their life and they spend the majority of every waking moment involved in some direct activity related to the game. In terms of transitioning from your day job to online poker, we would suggest you first play seriously on your spare time and built your career gradually as you gain confidence and acquire more knowledge.
What is required to play online poker?
The technology required is actually quite minimal, as poker software, with some exception, are not excessively resource intensive. Even an old computer of the 2000s will do. Not to mention that today, it is possible to play from your mobile devices (smartphones and Android tablets, iPhone and iPad.) Playing poker on an iPhone has never been easier.
How much money do I need?
The required amounts are lower than you would expect, especially as you will still find a bonus to double your starting capital or even take the money offered. Annette Obrestad, for example, says she never wagered any of her own money, choosing instead to use welcome bonuses. After some hands with play money, people usually deposit between $10 and $50 for starters, sometimes up to $100. This is usually enough to play for a while. The important thing is to play tables that fit your budget.
3 Quick tips for successful pro gaming
- Have a healthy lifestyle. You should treat poker like a sport. Remember that your mind must be razor sharp. A good poker player is a rested and healthy player. Refrain from drinking too much alcohol, and cultivate healthy lifestyle habits such as a balanced diet, regular exercise and proper nights of sleep.
- Don’t confuse playing the online pokies at Pokies Palace in Australia with poker games, as these are a completely different form of gambling.
- Play on weekends. Most amateurs (a therefore bad players) have daytime jobs and have little time or energy during the week to play.
- Play during prime time. Most poker players live in wealthy western countries such as the US, Canada, Germany, the UK and France. You want to be playing with as many bad players as possible.