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How to Prepare for the World Series of Poker

Whether you’re planning on traveling to Vegas this summer to participate in the World Series of Poker (WSOP) or you’re grinding poker tournaments on your favorite poker app, you need to put in the prep work if you want to stand a shot at taking home the trophy. Of course, practicing and studying poker is a big part of that, but there’s plenty more that goes on behind the scenes for winning players.

Especially for a weeks-long tournament series, stamina can be a huge issue. Remember, poker tournaments are a marathon, not a spring. Here’s how you can give yourself an edge over the competition.

(Photo Credit: Poker News )

Take Care of Your Health

Poker is an exciting game, and playing poker in Vegas is even more exciting. But you can’t burn the candle at both ends. Don’t try to stay up until 3AM before you have to get up for a poker tournament the next morning at 9. Getting enough sleep and rest can be hard, but it’s crucial for maintaining focus over an extended period.

The same is true for exercise and nutrition. You can sit in a chair and eat greasy food all day, but after a day or two of this you’ll start to feel the effects. Get up for a walk or run. Eat a salad. As they say—garbage in, garbage out. In this case, the garbage coming out would be costly mistakes at the poker table.

The Winning Mindset

The mental game is huge at a big event like the WSOP. First, especially if you’re a WSOP rookie, you’re probably going to feel some nerves. It’s okay! Don’t feel like you need to get it all in with the big bluff at level one of the tournament. Instead, take a conservative approach at first to ease into it. You’ll get more comfortable as you get into the groove.

Another thing to consider is that you’re there to try to win the tournament, not just to see how far you can get. Too often, people just sit back and blind out because they’re afraid of busting out of the tournament. But the truth is that you’re not going to win the vast majority of tournaments you play, but, if you never win or at least make it to the top of the standings, then you’ll never be a profitable poker player.

Sometimes, winning is about taking risks. Make the call or fire the bluff. Remember that there’s no difference between 1000th place and 100th place if neither of them cash.


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