If you’re a big poker fan, you might well be accustomed to dominating games at home with your friends. The only problem with playing home poker games is the fact that your friends may have very different levels of skill and experience. This can leave you in a situation where, although you enjoy the company and the social side to your weekly social game, deep down you're left feeling like you need slightly more of a challenge when it comes to testing your skills and developing your own experience.
Guiding Your Friends in the Right Direction
One of the easiest ways to rectify this problem is by helping to elevate your less experienced friends up to somewhere approaching your level of play. Doing this comes with obvious risks; you might end up in a position where not only do you have to provide the beers and snacks for the evening, but you might also have to hand over your money to your “apprentices turned masters”.
However, if it’s a sustained challenge you want week in, week out with your friends, this is a good way to do it. Without a doubt the best way to educate others on the intricacies of poker is using some of the comprehensive online resources specifically aimed at raising the skill level of those who play home poker. 888poker have a handy guide that explains how to dominate home poker games. It should be an easy sell for getting friends involved, especially since one of the best tips is that two beers can help your working memory capacity!
This approach from 888 perfectly encapsulates a key point to enjoying home poker with your mates: getting that balance spot on between diligently improving skills but also having fun and relaxing at the same time.
Moving to the Next Level
Having fun at home is one thing, but you may decide that it’s time for you to move on from the confines of home poker to the wider world of live poker, a very different beast from the version of poker you might be familiar with from home. The thought of live poker can seem intimidating, especially if you haven't played poker in the bricks-and-mortar environment of a casino before, but it can be one of the most exciting forms of playing the game.
Before you enter into the world of live poker properly, make sure you look into the practical differences that this step-up in class entails so that you will be able to survive your first contact with the live poker world. The basic rules may seem the same, but the recommended strategy can be completely different. Take pre-flop raises as an example. In a home poker game, your mates might see your decision and follow suit, but in live poker games, you are more likely to see players fold straight away.
Another tip is making sure you raise in the right way. Failure to do this might leave you looking like a novice, which could see other players ganging up on you, leaving you feeling like you’re on the set of Jaws rather than in a poker game. In a home poker game, the instinct to throw your raise onto the table in a dramatic way just to gauge who is keen and who is going to be folding is one you can follow quite easily, but you just can't do that at a live poker game. In fact, you should avoid anything that might signal that you're a newbie to the other players.
Taking a few practical steps should help to ensure that the live poker environment becomes as comfortable for you as the home poker environment did previously.