Way of the Poker Warrior

Way of the Poker Warrior

Master Paul Hoppe has been a teacher and respected senior of mine since the late 1990s.  His flawless technique and effortless sparring skill cannot be mistaken for anything other than countless hours of practice and disciplined mental training.

Recently, he completed a 28-day Grindathon, during which he played poker, then recorded a Hand of the Day video and a video blog every day. He made $30,000 in profits and raised $3,000 for cancer and autism charities.

Although I know nothing about poker or Texas Holdem, I took away a tremendous amount of wisdom from his book “Way of the Poker Warrior”.  After 13 years in the martial arts, I feel I’ve learned techniques to acquire success thanks to our common teacher, Grandmaster Suk Jun Kim.  Reading Master Hoppe’s book illuminated the parallels between mastery of Taekwon-Do and mastery of just about anything else.  In this case, it is poker.

Take this little quote:

Few players want to spend hours grinding out the minutiae. They don’t have the discipline to put the work in. These players are giving you an opportunity. If you consistently grind out these details of the game until you know this information cold, you will have a concrete edge on your opponents.

A warrior realizes and respects that he is in a competition, and Master Hoppe showed me that victory is reserved for those who create advantages for themselves.  In each chapter, he parallels a lesson learned from Taekwon-Do with a poker hand won or lost due to the application of the concept.

If you love to play Texas Holdem or any other poker game and have a few tricks or a few rules you play by, this book will give you what you need to get your game level way, way up.  Master Hoppe shows you how to train yourself, how to prepare for competition, how to lose, and how to improve, improve, improve.

Recently, I blew a demonstration by failing to break boards on the first attempt.  Taking a cue from Master Hoppe, I decided to “Go to the Video Tape”.  Taking time to objectively review my mistakes with honesty is something I never considered until I read this book.  The lessons I learned were so powerful, I felt obliged to write an article complete with pictures lest I forget these lessons ever again.  Learning from our mistakes is an essential part of success.

I jokingly told Master Hoppe that he should start a series for everything from Way of the Housekeeping Warrior to Way of the Computer Programming Warrior and apply the formulas he lays out to each skill.  The concepts and practical examples explained in this book are bound to make you more than a better poker player, more than a better martial artist, they will make you better at EVERYTHING.

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