Playing Poker Can Sharpen Your Mind

Share This Post

Playing Poker Can Sharpen Your Mind

While many consider poker to be a game of chance, it also involves a fair amount of skill. Throughout the many different types of poker, there are countless rules to memorize and variables to consider. So it shouldn’t come as any surprise, really, that poker can actually help to sharpen the brain’s ability to process information and numbers.

Unsurprisingly, the game has been a common choice of activity for people throughout the pandemic. Stuck indoors, and without access to social activities, many turned to poker as a way to socialize and keep their minds stimulated. But how exactly does poker accomplish the latter?

There’s a lot of math

While there’s always an element of chance in any game of poker, the best players use math to understand just what that chance is and how to navigate it. By fully understanding a pack of cards and the circumstances of any variety of poker, good players can predict with at least some degree of accuracy what cards other players have, or how likely a given card is to be dealt.

This process has something to do with memory, which we’ll touch on more below. But it is also about quick calculations on the fly. Poker cannot be “solved” with math, but it can be simplified by those who make the effort. And that effort sharpens the mind.


With or without a mathematical approach, players need to be smooth and savvy with their decisions. Essentially, all of the information at hand in any given moment needs to be processed and turned into an informed decision in real time. Careful, quick analysis of this kind is something that can be learned –– which means it’s essentially a cognitive skill one can develop through poker. And believe it or not, the decision-making process plays such a tangible role in brain activity that the brain can be witnessed going through it!


Of all the brain processes that poker demands of players, the ability to memorize and recall its numerous rules is one of the most important. Indeed, some of the first tips beginning poker players learn ultimately amount to exercises in memory. Things like learning the different varieties of the game and their respective rules, understanding what hands can be assembled and how they rank against one another, and so on all need to be stored in memory for instant recall during games

Social analysis

The social side of poker can be just as important as the math and analytical sides. Ultimately, the game is about combining your own predictions with accurate “reads” of your opponents. Picking up on subtle social skills can be difficult, especially when some people have tells that most non-poker players would never pick up on. But as you play more and you learn to take note of almost imperceptible signals, you’ll actually be improving your social intelligence. Plenty of poker players fancy themselves savvy observers of other people specifically because of their experiences at the tables.

Emotional intelligence

Poker also sharpens your emotional intelligence –– teaching you to be measured in your approach to challenges. You need to play the game without letting your opponents know just how well or how poorly you might be doing. This is a skill that improves the longer you play poker, and it may well carry over into more stoic, logic-driven reactions to everyday situations in your life.

When you consider all of this, it’s easy to see why many see poker as a sort of mental exercise. We talk a lot about fitness with regard to the body, and much less about how to give your brain a “work out.” But given all of the above, it’s interesting to consider poker as part of a cognitive regiment you can set up for yourself.


Related Articles

Tips and Tricks to Survive Your Next Medical Inspection

Tips and Tricks to Survive Your Next Medical Inspection Your first small business health inspection is likely to be in the food service sector. It...

Tips to Maintain Healthy Knees

Maintaining healthy knees requires taking several precautions. Elderly adults frequently experience knee issues. It may become difficult to walk, climb stairs, or get in and...

A Closer Look at Clinical Lab Technician Jobs in Vermont

If you’re looking for a career in healthcare, consider becoming a clinical lab technician. This job is currently in high demand in Vermont, with...

How to prepare for a health inspection

How should you prepare for an inspection? Be prepared for inspections at your restaurant by becoming more knowledgeable about the regulations and foodservice industry. Here...

What You Need to Know About Becoming a Physical Therapist

Physical therapists (PTs) are in high demand, with hospitals and clinics hiring them in large numbers at competitive salaries. If you're interested in breaking...

Simple Tips to Make Your Weekly Meal Prep Easier

Spend more quality time with your family by prepping meals, snacks and lunches ahead of time. Prepstart Lifestyle provides Meal Prep in Killeen TX...

What can I eat while taking Viagra?

Viagra works best when taken between 30 and 4 hours after administration, on an empty stomach. If you've recently eaten a large meal, skip...

Get the Winning Tactics For Cycling with this Indoor Cycling App

Cycling can be an exhilarating activity that everyone enjoys, yet few take the necessary effort to achieve success. If you want to improve your...

There are many types of public health degrees

There are many types of public health degrees that you can choose from Are you looking to make a positive impact in your career? Public...

Recent Articles

Complete Children’s Health! Receive Complete Health Care

Complete Children's Health! Receive Complete Health Care for Your Children The...

The Role Played by a Fitness Instructor in Personal Training

Finding a reputable, very proficient fitness teacher or personal trainer...

Women Book Procedures are Los Angeles Liposuction Centers

4 Common Reasons Why Women Book Procedures are Los...

Why You Need a Family Health Guide

If you've got a family, then you'll need to...

Benefits Of Health Nut Salads

Salads are an essential part of your health that...

Top Massage Techniques Explained

  There are lots of types of massage, each with...


- Advertisement -spot_img
error: Content is protected !!