Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Anyone want some coaching?

I miss poker! I would love to take on a student or two for some in-depth coaching.

I'm quite unusual as a coach, which I think makes me quite valuable; I'll bring a different point of view to your game both at and away from the table. Here's an example of the sort of coaching package I've offered in the past:

6 one-hour lessons for $900 ($150/hr)

Lesson 1: Getting to know you. This is not just a lesson for me to get to know you, but also for you to get to know yourself. We talk about what you are trying to get out of poker, what strengths you can play to, what weaknesses you can avoid, etc. We will also talk about ways to improve strengths or decrease weaknesses through cognition, meditation, diet, socializing, etc. etc. etc. I have played poker for a long time and read a lot of books, watched a lot of videos, written a lot of blog posts, reviewed a lot of hands. This is a chance for us to get to know each other by talking about how you are unique as a player and what we can think of that would be the best way to develop you to be better.

Lesson 2: The bare bones of poker game theory. In this lesson I go over a game where you can only have the nuts, a bluffcatcher, or a bluff, there is only one street to play, there is only one pot-sized bet left, and there is only one opponent who similarly only has the nuts, a bluffcatcher, or a bluff. Talking about this simple situation and comparing it to the more complicated game of NLHE easily fills an hour. All further lessons seek to apply the basic building-blocks learned here to different aspects of NLHE.

Lesson 3: Preflop math. We talk about how to work out [i]balanced[/i] three-betting, four-betting, and five-betting strategies, and how to play [i]balanced[/i] styles against shortstackers. We also talk about why this balanced style will beat an unbalanced style.

Lesson 4: Postflop math. We talk about how to play a balanced postflop style. This goes far beyond simple equations like when semi-bluffing is +EV, focusing on how balanced ranges change on each street, what hands you are used to bluff with, when a balanced game-plan calls for an overbet (or underbet), and so on.

Lesson 5: Exploitation. We talk about how to adjust away from our balanced game-plan to punish unbalanced opponents. Now that we've gone into great detail about what exactly balance is for our own game and why being balanced works we turn that inside-out and focus on recognizing how our opponents are not balanced and how we can make it so that their strategy doesn't. This lesson will cover questions like "what % 3bet do I start 4bet bluffing against?" and "how do I adjust against opponents with unusual cbet %s or sizings?"

Lesson 6: Practice and wind-down. We go back to retouch on the parts of the coaching that you had the most trouble with, look over some of your hands, maybe do a little sweating if you want it. This is basically an open space which we can decide the best use for as we get a feel for each other and how our coach-student relationship works.

As far as the general coaching philosophy/experience blurb, I've had four formal students in the past, but the vast majority of my experience as a coach comes from informal interactions with friends and forum members. Ironically, the last time I gave coaching was to my own coach, GoMukYaSelf, an extremely successful high-stakes cash game player who, as a much less math-based player, got a lot out of my quick overview of basic game theory and rigid balance, and out of the massive preflop equities graph that I sent him to accompany it.

As a poker player overall I do not consider myself especially remarkable, although I am certainly extremely successful and was playing as high as $10/20 online regularly while putting in massive midstakes volume earlier this year (see the videos earlier in this blog if you'd like to see more). As a student of practical application of poker game theory however I consider myself to likely be in the top 100 in the world, and as such I believe my coaching would be beneficial to players of all skill levels; even those who play higher stakes with higher winrates than me.

If you're interested please e-mail me at sflavall@gmail.com or contact me at s.flavall on skype. If you play lower stakes and the $150/hr is above your bankroll but you'd really like coaching get in touch anyway and we can try to work something out.

No comments:

Post a Comment