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It’s that time of year again! Time to start thinking about buying gifts for those near and dear to you. Given how the last year has gone, you know your poker playing friends and family are desperate for a little poker love.
You know who they are. She’s your sister who takes every vacation in Las Vegas and got vaccinated this year just to play the WSOP. Or maybe he’s your dad who is up late playing on PokerStars every night. Now you’ve got to wrap your mind around finding them a gift. Poker Pilgrims would like to help you out with suggestions for great poker gifts for the player in your life. In these tough times, don’t they deserve a little something special to help them get back into the swing of the game?
Great Poker Gifts
- A book to curl up with would be at the top of our list of poker gifts. Which book, you ask? Here are some of our favorites:
For the Beginner: We love Phil Gordon’s Little Book series, starting with The Little Green Book: Lessons and Teachings in No Limit Texas Hold Em
The Tournament Player: Arnold Snyder’s Poker Tournament Formula is a must read for any player who wants to get serious about tournament poker.
For the Cash Player: Harrington gives some good solid advice in Cash Games (How to Win in No-Limit Hold ‘Em Money Games) Vol. I that still holds up today.
For the Experienced Player who wants to enhance their play: We love Peak Poker Performance by Dr. Patricia Cardner and Jonathan Little from D&B Poker which covers the mental and physical aspects of being ready to play your best game. If only we could do a better job of following their advice!
For anyone looking for a great poker read: Mike Sexton’s Life’s a Gamble by Mike Sexton from D&B Poker Sadly, we lost Mike Sexton last year. His kind and measured approach to the game are much needed and notable in their absence. His life story is both fascinating and inspirational.
For other poker strategy books that we recommend, check out our post on Best Poker Books for Learning Poker Strategy. And if you just want a really good poker story, we offer our 5 Best Poker Reads. My personal favorite will always be Positively Fifth Street. But Maria Konnikova’s book, The Biggest Bluff debuted last year and would make a great gift book as well.
- A set of beautiful and durable playing cards is a great poker gift to enhance the home game: We love these Copag Cards and use them heavily at our own kitchen table. In fact, we end up buying a new set of these yearly so that we always have fresh decks.
- The Best Poker Training We Have Found
- Why We Love the World Series of Poker
- Daniel Negreanu’s Master Class
- A subscription to a poker training site to help them brush up their skills. We are admittedly biased here, as Advanced Poker Training pays us to work (and blog) for their site. However, we can honestly tell you that their approach to training is the best that we’ve seen. Rather than just offering a series of videos and articles about how other people play poker, APT invites you to play your preferred game (tournament, cash, sit n go, whatever’s your poison). They then analyze your play and send out a weekly plan with practice exercises and advice. A membership at APT is one of our favorite poker gifts to give. We have also found Daniel Negreanu’s Masterclass in poker to be very helpful in advancing our thoughts about the game.
- A fun poker t shirt: There are a variety of t-shirts out there. However, we have created a few shirts for our own personal use, that you are welcome to gift to your loved one. Search us at Spiral of Doom Ts on Amazon to see more.
- If you’ve got real money to burn, every poker player’s secret dream is a buy in to The WSOP Main Event for a mere $10,000. If that is a bit out of reach, perhaps a buy in to a smaller event at a card room near you.
- If you are a tournament player like us, you need to have your stuff with you for those long days at the poker table. We love these backpacks so much that we have bought three (one for each of us and one for my daughter). With a padded laptop section and room for snacks, phones, chargers and anything else you might desire, this backpack has you covered.
We hope that our list of great poker gifts for your favorite player has been helpful. I know that I would love to get any of the above (hint, hint Paul).
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