I’m Back, And A Thought On Poker Pedagogy

No Limit Texas Holdem, Poker Concepts, Psychology

March 6, 2008

Sorry I’ve been dormant so long. Life interfered. I should be able to write regularly again, and I’ve got a lot of material I’m planning to post.

Just to get things started, an interesting thought about teaching poker: the hard part may not be teaching the game, but in converting that teaching into correct play. Here’s an example:

Nearly every serious or even vaguely serious poker player has read the Supersystem chapter on NL holdem. Why then, do I see at least monthly posts on RGP of the basic form “I played AQo out of position for a raise and got screwwwed!”? How can so many people read, but not understand? For those that aren’t NL-literate, despite being pretty AQo is playable only under very favorable circumstances. This point is made multiple times in Supersystem. Most of these people HAVE READ SUPERSYSTEM. If you asked them, they could probably even tell you the AQ is known as the “Doyle Brunson” because he famously refused to play it. Do you see the disconect? Even if these posters decided to play the hand in a way contrary to Doyle’s advice, they should at the very least not be surprised by a bad outcome.

My point is that there’s some major gap in poker teaching being exposed here. When advice meets preconceived notions and the desire to be in action (even bad action), the advice goes right out the window to the point of being forgotten. Makes trying to teach poker, especially to those who want to gamble, a tough proposition. I don’t have a solution, but I think it’s worthwhile acknowledging the problem. I’ll ponder it some more.

This article is part of Project Cash Game No Limit Holdem - You can find more great strategy articles there.
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