If you think asking other poker players for tips on how to play better will help you improve your poker playing skills, think again. Online poker forums may seem like a veritable font of information that you can use to your advantage in the game, but in reality, it is not. It might be a good place to get some insight on the game as a beginner but it is not a place that you should visit if you’re aiming to win consistently in this game.
Why do we think online poker forums are not all they are purported to be when it comes to improving your game? Here are some reasons:
Questionable and sometimes misleading advice – Remember that when you ask questions on these forums that you’re asking people you might be playing against for tips and answers to your questions. It’s like two businessmen talking with each other and asking how to increase revenues when you are in direct competition with each other. Some players on these forums may be well meaning but how do you tell one from the other? This is why trying to improve your game using poker forums is not a good idea.
There are almost no real experts on them – Let’s be real. If you were on top of your game and are considered one of the biggest players in poker, would you spend any time on these forums yourself? The likely answer is no. There is a reason why the poker greats are great at what they do and that is they spend their time elsewhere, not on poker forums. They spend time perfecting their craft, resting, and keeping abreast of their latest competitors. They are also highly unlikely to spill the beans on how they are so good at what they do since that would give their competitors and future players an advantage over them.
These simply eat up your time – If you want to improve your game, don’t waste your time asking others how to do this. Do it yourself. In order to improve, you need to play, you need to practice. If you spend a lot of time on these forums, you simple waste play time on something that can’t actually help you that much to begin with. If your aim is to do better on the game, then you should be playing the game and not reading how other players play it.
Learn to play the game the right way – There is only one way for you to improve in the game of poker and that is to equip yourself with the tools for it. The right information from well-known poker books, practice, practice, and still more practice is what you need when you aim to become really good at this game. No amount of hanging out on poker forums and asking questions of other players like you who are starting up will help you improve your game. It all comes with playing, learning from the right resources, and playing some more.
Upside of Online Poker Forums
While these forums are not considered a great avenue for becoming a fantastic poker player, they do serve a purpose. For one, it unifies players like you under one “roof”, so to speak. It is a great place for you to meet like-minded individuals who love the game and are also learning to play it, just like you. It’s a great place to talk about your poker fails, poker funny stories, and for getting insight on some great poker places online.
In short, these poker forums are great for socializing. You should be aware by now that poker isn’t a team sport so it’s definitely a rather lonely game. Finding others in the same boat as you can help ease some of that loneliness and can even give you access to people who can become real friends.
Poker forums are also great fonts of information for getting leads on certain up-and-coming players, great poker books and guides to read, and finding a few people to practice playing with. It is a great place to find all of these but not for getting real advice on how to improve your game and how to become one of the greatest poker players around.
The Takeaway from All This
At the end of the day, learning how to play poker really well is something that you cannot relegate to others. It is something you have to do on your own and something that you need to figure out without input from players who are also trying to claw their way up the poker playing ladder. Forums are great for a lot of things but not for giving you the kind of input you need to become a consistent winner on the tables.
You can sign up to any of the poker forums that you find provided that you know what your purpose is for signing up. Getting information on the basics, meeting new friends, getting in on the latest gaming gossip, and other inconsequential reasons are okay. Signing up to learn how to become a great poker player however is unrealistic. All you will get is misguided and neophyte advice from people just like you and that is not going to be helpful.
Another thing you have to remember before signing up is to find the right forums to sign up for. Not all forums have the same kind of people signing up on them. There are some who are simply there to mess with their future competitors. There are others who are totally clueless when they become members. The best forums and the ones you should try to look for are those that have listings for poker books, lists of places where you can learn how to play, and those that answer beginner questions truthfully.
Other poker forums are just a waste of time and should be avoided, if you can. It’s also a good idea to limit your visits to the forums you are a member on to once a week and to stay within the safer topics that are mentioned above. If you gravitate towards rather dubious topics like Tricks and Tips on How to Win, or something like that, steer clear. Always remember, poker is a solitary game that pits other players against other players and no one will ever want to show their hand, so to speak, simply because they want to be helpful.