Becoming a better player

News RSS / Annette 15 / 28 November 2008 / 6 Comments

There were a few follow up forum questions from my last post so I've tried to answer some of them below.


From the very beginning I have always been good at managing money. I think I can say that I have never risked more than 5 per cent of my bankroll on any tournament except when I started with $9 and had no choice lol and that was when I was taking shots. I've always stuck to the '100 buy-ins rule' for freezeouts and it's been working really well. I've never been tempted to play high stakes cash and don't think I will for a while.


As for bad runs, we all know they suck and there are different ways of handling it. Some take breaks, some play through it and some ban themselves for a month to not play lol. I guess I've been more of the play it through type because one of my biggest strengths is that I play my A-game 99 per cent of the time I'm at the tables.

No matter how bad I'm running, I rarely tilt if at all. That's just something you have got to work on I guess. Being hard on yourself and stop crying if you take a beat, well, it won't get you anywhere. If complaining makes you feel better, then by all means... go ahead. However, other people won't feel sorry for you. More often than not, you'll just end up feeling even worse if you start whining because you use all your energy on focusing on the bad stuff that you forget about everything good that happens. You then start going around in circles that you can't get out of until you luckbox your way to a tournament win and get your confidence back.

It takes a lot of stamina and discipline to become a good poker player, but that's something that you can learn if you have the right mindset to do it :)

Getting better

I have been my own teacher since I started playing poker. I'm very honest with myself, and I always question the plays I make and try to think of other ways to play hands and so on. I have always felt like the only person that will help you get better is yourself because you know your game best. You know your strengths and weaknesses that other people won't know. So the only thing I would be discussing with other people is mostly what you can do to get better at certain scenarios and situations in general, not just single hands.

Most people have problems doing this by themselves though and feel they learn better by watching other people play or watching videos etc. I obviously do all that stuff as well and always have, but it's more because I want to understand how my opponents think and not how they play, so that I can easily adjust to the same type of players next time I meet them.

Being a fish

I was splashing around for quite some time. My first year, all I played was 6-max sng's ranging from $1-20 and sme normal ones $20-50. I didn't start getting into tournaments until my bankroll was about $4k. I only played the really small ones and just ground them out. I have never had a score that has doubled my bankroll except for the WSOPE win, and that should tell you a lot. It's not all about getting that one big score and living off that. There are other way to success in this game, and it's been an important part of my learning process no doubt.

To the people who often ask 'When should you move up and take shots?' I think it's a simple answer. When you know that you can beat your current level, and you have confidence that you are good enough to beat the higher ones. This should reflect in your bankroll meaning that you can do as you wish and not feel uncomfortable with it. If your bankroll can't afford to take that hit, you are simply wrong and need to keep grinding until you know.


Related Articles
I Love Poker - Annette Obrestad
Importance of bankroll management - Poker Articles
Has anyone seen my bankroll? - Pud's Poker (Blog)
Bankroll Management (Stop Losses) - Marcus Bateman
Become a better player - Betfair Poker Articles


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    Comments (6)

    1. Dray | 01 December 2008

      "It's not all about getting that one big score and living off that."

      This is probably the best advice in the whole column. But damn, that one big score would be so nice. :)

    2. Ramaraider | 08 December 2008

      Great article! So true.

      I've been following the same path ever since I lost my job and have been playing fulltime. My game has gone up and my bankroll. Thanks

    3. Don't Ask | 16 December 2008

      Played against you several times online recently. You're a hyperaggressive card-catching donk.

      You won't last.

    4. Danny W. from U.S.A. | 17 December 2008

      Heyyyyyyyyyyyyy "Don't Ask": One too many bad beats, huh? :)

    5. I_am_asking | 03 January 2009

      Right on Danny. I think "Don't ask" forgot to read Annette's blog before he layed against her :) I love you Annette. You are gorgeous, sweet and smart. I wish you the best in the future. I just started playing poker. Mainly cash games. Up and down and up and down so far. Still learning I guess.

    6. custom poker tables | 03 January 2009

      Great post. Sound advices! Nevermind Don't Ask, he's one of them haters. Keep up the remarkable articles!

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