Winning Poker and the Age Factor

Recently I’ve been analyzing and interviewing a lot of awfully successful online poker players. There is one thing just about all these internet players have in common, their age. High stakes players seem to be very young and it got me thinking, does age play a factor in whether younger players are better at high stakes internet poker?

The very first thought that came to mind as to why younger players are dominating high stakes internet poker is their risk tolerance. Younger players don’t truly have a grasp on what money really means. Oh God, before you guys lay the wrath down on me for that sentence hear me out. Don’t get me wrong young players understand money is a great thing to have but don’t get the full understanding of how long it takes to make $100k in the real world. Because of this they might play more freely with their earned cash and be able to turn it into even bigger sums without stressing out or feeling like they are playing out of their league.

The young guns win $10,000 and say hell I’m going to turn it into $100,000 and not worry about if I lose it. On the other hand a middle aged 9-5er understands $100k means 5 less years of working and would be less likely to risk the money.  It seems like these days you’re either a poker bonus code hunter, a fish, or a high stakes player.

High insurance costs, mortgages, multiple car loans, and baby costs are not on the minds of younger players. Playing for hundreds of thousands of dollars with that on the back of your mind doesn’t exactly free up your game. Lately a lot of high stakes players are still in college so they don’t have any too many expenses. O.K. so they do have their necessity expenses but it’s not like their family is going to starve to death if they have a bad week at the tables.

Risk aversion plays a huge factor in a lot of things. Your financial position in the stock market can sometimes be directly related to your style of poker. It’s no wonder you see so many successful high stakes poker players coming from Wall Street. JohnnyBax “Cliff Josephy” is a high stakes online poker pro I did an article on as of late. He was rated top online pro multiple times. While JohnnyBax has a wife and kids he came from the high pace world at a brokerage firm. What makes him so successful at online poker? Well he’s not as young as some of the other guys and he has a family, but buying and selling stocks has trained him to handle the ups and downs of money fluctuations. His body and mind is apt to such changes and can deal with $100k swings without going on tilt.

At the writings of this article I wrote down 10 names who people considered to be the best online poker players. Four were under the age of 21, four were under the age of 30, and only two were above 30 years of age. There were even a couple guys like Justin Bonomo who were beating high stakes poker games while still in high school.

Mental stability is one more phrase that gets thrown around a lot in high stakes poker. It’s your ability to take bad beats and not go insane. Live poker players have been known to take doses of Paxil and Xantax before tournaments to settle their nerves and reduce poker tells. “In high stakes internet poker it can become more a battle with yourself than the other players,” say a lot of high stakes internet players.

So, you’re still not convinced that age plays a factor in high stakes internet poker? Just take a look at our online poker bio section. Notice a common trait amongst the players? They either all started during high school or college and were playing big money games before the age of 21.


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Roger Shriver

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