How to start playing professional poker


Becoming a professional poker player, like any career move, is not a decision to be taken lightly. There are some basic guidelines to follow in order to begin seriously considering poker as a profession, rather than a hobby.


The most important aspect of beginning to play professionally is ensuring that you have enough money set aside to ‘bankroll’ your venture. Keep this pool of cash separate to your everyday living expenses – ensuring, of course, that you have enough money to comfortably cover your bills.

Realistically, even the best card player will have some unlucky downswings, so your pot of money needs to be sufficient to cover you through the bad times.

Time Management

Like any profession, there needs to be ample time set aside to perform your role satisfactorily. Playing an hour a day is unlikely to yield impressive enough results to making a decent living. Likewise, playing 12 hours a day, every day, is a sure-fire way to cause mental fatigue – leading to poor decisions and, ultimately, losing money. Set aside a defined amount of playing time per day, and try to stick to this.


Like many other professions; the poker landscape is constantly changing, so reading about poker theory (in both books and online forums) is essential. New and different styles are constantly evolving and it is important to stay on top of these – lest you fall victim to them.

Clearly, becoming a poker professional is not an easy task. For many, it may be better to remain in their current job, concentrating on poker in their spare time. For those who do take the plunge, be sure to adhere to the rules above.