Monday, December 14, 2009

Missives From A Pretend Professional Poker Player - Part 1. Volume

With a lot more time to work with, I've been trying to give more thought to how I approach online poker.

I decided to try to adopt more of a professional approach. Not that I want to be a pro, but this seems as good an opportunity as any for some experimentation.

The first thing I gave some thought to was volume. Hands per month, hours to play, etc.

Not having any great knowledge of how online pros operate, I've previously been staggered by some of the numbers people quote for stats such as hands per month.

Yet with just a few weeks experience it seems to me their volumes are not such a hard goal to achieve. Previously I'd thought all these guys had to be sixteen-tabling for twenty hours a day.

My goals started out much more modestly. Whereas a 'normal' job might entail an eight hour working day, I figured that eight hours of online poker five days a week would melt my brain, so instead I targeted two two-hour sessions per day for Monday to Friday, with the weekend left to my whims. Maybe trying a few tournaments, instead of more cash play.

My next task was to decide where to play. As it happens, Full Tilt runs an afternoon (UK time)happy hour, and another evening happy hour when the deep-stack tables are heavily populated, so I made them my first hunting ground.

Initial results were pleasantly surprising. Six tabling seems to be my limit, which I think is a fair compromise between volume and thinking. There are people playing lots more than that but many are short-stackers who are constantly in push or fold mode.

With that set-up two hours seems to fairly whizz past, and I'd been averaging around 440 hands per hour. Which scales up to ~40,000 per month if I were doing it as a part-time job with no weekend play.

Given that a lot of the online pros play six-max rather than full-ring, and don't all get beyond 100k per month, there seems to be some slacking going on!

Of course it's all new to me, so I can imagine that, like most jobs, there's an element of familiarity breeding boredom over time.

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