Reasons Why People Play Poker

Poker players are no strangers to its many pitfalls. From wasting hours upon hours on a game only to find oneself incurring a loss, to getting frequently disconnected from a game of online poker due to poor Internet, it comes as no surprise that many players are left stressed out and frazzled after a game. In spite of these downsides, so many remain entrenched in the ways of poker. If you would like to try your hand at online poker, we have a large $2,000 referral code for you. This article will detail the many reasons poker remains an alluring activity. Keep reading to find out more!

Monetary Gain 

This is usually one of the most common reasons that come to mind, for both players and non-players of the game. Indeed, many beginner players start out with the unrealistic mindset of sitting upon heaps of money following a million-dollar tournament win. It is thus surprising that big-name players such as Doyle Brunson advocate that aspiring players and professionals alike should forsake the importance of money in a game. Materialism and consumption may be the zeitgeist of our generation, but to poker players, winnings are merely a means of measuring whether they are incurring a profit or loss for that session or season. It may be an indicator of a playerโ€™s success, but it is only one of the many reasons poker remains popular. 


While the words singer or actor usually come to mind when we think of renowned individuals, these are no longer the only paths to fame in the entertainment industry. You may be surprised to find out that poker tournaments are frequently broadcasted on TV, offering these players a good slice of the fame pie. Easy but no less appealing, winners of poker tournaments may now enjoy various forms of endorsements such as contracts with poker sites, TV or online interviews, and book contracts. Some even get the chance to participate in poker events catered to celebrities, where they can go up against big-name stars in the entertainment industry. Sounds like a dream, doesnโ€™t it?

Mental Rigour

Learning the rules of poker takes no time at all, but becoming a true expert requires years of practice and intellect. The mental rigor of poker makes it highly enticing to erudite individuals. In fact, a good number of poker stars have university degrees or have accumulated awards in other intellectually stimulating games like chess and backgammon. 

Emotional Discipline

It is easy to lose emotional control when one is up against a formidable opponent, or when one has incurred an extreme loss. It is at such moments where achieving inner peace is of the utmost importance. However, even the most professional of players lack the emotional discipline required to continue a game amicably. โ€˜Tiltโ€™ is an emotional state where annoyance and exasperation push players towards making regrettable decisionsโ€“  either becoming too aggressive or too timid. Dr. Alan Schoonmaker proposes that the reasons for losing emotional control in a game include improbable expectations, excessive pride, and miscalculating the skill level of an opponent. This is why controlling oneโ€™s emotions is essential to any poker game; doing so helps to reduce financial losses. 

The Thrill 

A game of poker can sometimes be as thrilling and dangerous as skydiving or bungee jumping. The uncertainty of poker can be particularly tempting to thrill-seekers. Compared to more risk-averse players who generally prefer to minimize bankroll fluctuations, more daring individuals have no qualms about betting big regardless of their hand or the chances of winning. Such people love to intimidate their opponents and bet beyond their capabilities. 

The Competition

What do sportsmen and poker players have in common? The answer is a competitive streak. Poker is all about competition between players, which is why so many of the biggest poker stars, such as T.J. Cloutier and Doyle Brunson have roots in competitive sports. Retiring from sports does not mean that one necessarily has to back down from competition. Instead, many ex-sportsmen and even current athletes delve into poker as a means to maintain their competitive spirit and hone their poker skills in major tournaments. 

The Comradeship

Perhaps the most meaningful part of poker, and of being human for that matter, is the relationships one has with other players. A game of poker, be it a casual one during lunch break at the office or a major live tournament, is not complete without the playful banter and ribbing between players. Many even have conversations outside of poker, about their hobbies, the latest current affairs, and the like. These are conversations that most people will gravitate towards when engaged in activities with one another. 

Undoubtedly, there are more introverted players who choose to focus only on the intricacies of the game, forgoing the precious opportunity to attain more information on other players. More importantly, they fail to understand that poker is an inherently social game, aimed at giving players an enjoyable shared experience. Rather than focusing overtly on the monetary value of poker, why not connect with other poker players at your upcoming match? Who knows, you might gain a lifelong friendship; thatโ€™s certainly worth more than all the chips you can have.ย 

Although I have covered a fair number of common reasons people play poker, this list is by no means exhaustive. I am sure there are as many reasons for playing poker (both personal and societal) as stars in the sky. That would require an in-depth investigation that is far beyond what I can cover in this article. Should this article spark your interest in gathering more information about the reasons why people play poker, feel free to do more research. It is a rather interesting topic, after all. 

In spite of potential financial woes and giving up certain aspects of oneโ€™s life, so many continue to play game after game. At best, one can be inducted into the poker hall of fame. At worst, it can spiral into severe gambling addiction. Donโ€™t fret, however, so long as you manage your finances well and know your limit, your poker journey will go smoothly.

Krystal | Sunny Sweet Days
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