Mental Coach Jared Tendler: How to Constantly Improve in Poker

Mental Coach Jared Tendler: How to Constantly Improve in Poker

12-09-2014, 08:55

In this short poker theory lesson Tendler explains why constantly improving your poker game is of paramount importance plus a few easy ways to make sure you're on the right track.

By Jared Tendler

If you’re not improving, you’re falling behind.

If you’re falling behind, winrate/ROI drops, variance increases, and you risk becoming just another player complaining about running bad who really should be complaining about the state of their game.

I know you want to improve but how committed are you to actually taking the steps to make it happen?

Is improving your game a habit that you do constantly? How effective are you at it?

These are questions you need to be asking yourself. If the answers aren’t, 1) yes, and 2) very effective, then learning to learn, or learning how to improve is a skill that you need to, well, learn.

Playing Poker Teaches You How to Learn

As it turns out, playing poker is one of the best ways to learn.

Recent research has proven that taking tests help you to learn. The exams we took in school weren’t just to determine how much we knew, they also helped cement that knowledge and make us better at learning other things in the future.

Jared Tendler

Playing poker is a test. Every time you take that test, you need to prove that you know more than the last time you took it.

How you do that is, of course, easier said than done. Here are a few suggestions.

Assess the full range of your game, from your A-game to your very worst. Then, when you read articles, watch videos, post hands, and get coaching you'll already know which areas of your game need the most work.

You may not know what you need to know, but at least you'll know what you still need to learn.

Develop a proven warm-up that clears your mind of outside distractions and readies you to play your best.

On days that are super hard, for any reason – whether it's tilt, bad variance, fear, exhasution – make sure you avoid making your worst tactical or mental mistakes. Period.

Rest. Yes, rest is productive for many reasons. An important one is that you need rest in order to train skills to the level of instinct.

If you’re not improving, you’re falling behind.

Jared Tendler is a mental game coach to some of the most successful poker players in the world. You can learn more about his approach to poker psychology in his books The Mental Game of Poker 1 & 2.