Masterclass to help your poker focus

5 Ways MasterClass Can Help Your Poker Game

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Anyone who knows me is aware that I’m a big fan of MasterClass. MasterClass is a streaming platform where anyone can learn from the world’s best. Members get unlimited access to over 180 instructors across a wide variety of categories with an annual membership. We have previously reviewed Daniel Negreanu’s MasterClass, which we strongly recommend for anyone looking to up their poker game. But MasterClass is not a poker training platform. Rather, it contains a whole world of content, allowing you to learn everything from acting, to cooking, to organic gardening techniques.

However, MasterClass offers classes on several topics that can notably improve your poker performance. Succeeding at poker isn’t just about being a skilled poker player. You have to have the right mindset when you sit down at the poker table. And you have to be ready to play. What does “ready to play” mean? It means being healthy, rested, and focused. And MasterClass can help you with all of that. Here’s how:

Masterclass to help your poker focus

Get a Good Night’s Sleep

If you are going to play your best poker, you have to be well-rested. If you are tired, you won’t be able to focus. You will go on tilt more easily, and you will be distracted from your game. MasterClass offers a wonderful session on sleep. Neuroscience professor Matthew Walker teaches us how sleep works, how to optimize our sleep, and what to avoid if we are seeking a better night of sleep. Follow his tips, and you will reap the benefits the next time you sit down to a lengthy session at the poker table.

MasterClass on Eating for Optimum Health

Eating typical poker room fare is not putting our bodies or our brains in an optimal state. Fueling our bodies in a healthy way will elicit our best performance both physically and mentally. But, Daniel Negreanu and Chewy Lichtenberger aside, most poker players don’t even think about eating in a manner that maximizes their abilities. Conversely, there are a million diets out there, some healthier than others. Separating the fads from the outright scams and the truly healthy sustainable approaches is very challenging. Understanding, core healthy eating practices is critical to long-range health.

Toward that end, Michael Pollan developed one of my favorite MasterClass sessions. He lays out some basic food rules and explains how to eat more healthily, ethically, and sustainably. Pollan has spent decades thinking about our relationship to food and how to optimize our use of food as fuel for our bodies. He boiled all of this research down into three simple rules: eat (real) food, not too much, and mostly plants. In this MasterClass, Pollan explains not only the whys and hows for our personal benefit but also how these practices better the world we live in.

Developing Mental Strength

Poker players obviously need to display mental strength and focus to succeed at the table. Nothing derails a generally skilled player more than the inability to concentrate or having emotional issues flaring up midsession. At Masterclass, fitness instructor Robin Arzon will help you develop key cognitive and personal strengths that you can carry into your next poker session. With lessons on hustle, overcoming mental blocks, and finding your purpose, this class will give you the tools to reinvent not just your poker game, but yourself.

Exercise Self-Discipline

Like mental strength, self-discipline is key to poker success. Borrowing some tricks from the sports world, racing champion Lewis Hamilton teaches self-discipline. He shows the way to prepare your mind, body, and spirit for victory. This MasterClass covers everything from mental preparation to dealing with failure. It is an excellent companion to Robin Arzon’s MasterClass. The two together will help you optimize your mental game, and buffer yourself against the inevitable ups and downs of the game.

Mindfulness Meditation

Finally, if you are struggling with focus at the poker table, a little mindfulness meditation might do the trick. A number of top poker players advocate mindfulness meditation. You will find discussions of it in books and writings by Tommy Angelo, Tricia Cardner, and (yes) Daniel Negreanu. Cardner’s book with Jonathan Little Peak Poker Performance has an excellent discussion on the topic.

On MasterClass Jon Kabat-Zinn, long recognized as a top Western mindfulness expert, will lead you on a journey to incorporate mindfulness into your everyday life. Learning to be mindful will allow you to slow your thoughts down, help you focus on gathering data at the table, and prevent you from going on tilt. Kabat-Zinn’s classes offer an A to Z on meditation, including the body of science behind its benefits and actual meditation practices that you can execute in your own home. Several top poker players, most notably Andrew “LuckyChewy” Lichtenberger, have had great success incorporating mindful meditation into their personal and poker preparation.


These are just five MasterClass series that I have found helpful in my own poker practice. I have taken all of the classes listed above, and gained from each of them. My poker game is better for the things I have learned. Aside from these, the Daniel Negreanu class is also excellent. Beyond poker, there are so many more fun classes to explore. I have taken classes on screenwriting with Aaron Sorkin, Wilderness tips with Jessie Krebs, and even conservation with Dr. Jane Goodall. I have learned from each of these experts and had a lot of fun along the way!

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