Finding the best poker training site or course for you can be difficult.
There is a myriad of sites out there claiming to offer the best services at an affordable price and some will transform your game.
But others, not so much.
Poker training helped me take my game to a new level (when playing to pay my way through university) and there are countless pros who attribute their success to a particular course or site.
So let’s try and find the training that suits you so you can potentially become the next big pro!
Factors To Consider With Online Poker Training And Courses
There are lots of factors you need to consider before signing up for training such as:
- the type of training
- the activity of their forums/community
- the quality of video and content
- how often they produce content
- how accessible the content is (i.e., downloadable for offline viewing).
Keeping that in mind, let’s break down the 11 best poker training sites currently on the market.
|Poker Training Site||Game Type||Cost|
|UpswingPoker||6max and Heads Up||$49/month|
|SplitSuitPoker||No Limit Hold'em||$497|
|AdvancedPokerTraining||No Limit Holdem||$29/month|
|PLOQuickPro||Pot Limit Omaha||$497|
|PokerWarmup||No Limit Holdem||$3/month|
|JonathanLittlePoker||No Limit Holdem||$10/month|
|DeucesCracked||6max No Limit Holdem||$29/month|
|RedChipPoker||Fullring, 6max and Heads Up||$50/month|
|MyPokerCoaching||No Limit Holdem||€59/month|
Tournaments are one of the softest game types available online and live. For this reason, many players are learning how to beat this game type.
PokerNerve is a website owned by professional tournament poker player Kelvin “Acesup” Beattie. Kelvin has been a professional poker player for more than 12 years and he has amassed over $3,000,000 in winnings along with ten triple crowns!
This experience has helped him create one of the best poker courses out there.
The flagship of PokerNerve is the Road to Success MTT Poker Course. This course offers everything needed to bring a complete novice to a top-level poker player.
Unlike other MTT training on the market, PokerNerve has built a product which is comparable to a university course.
You will start with the basics of MTT play and develop your skills all the way up to advanced topics that the pros use. Only when you have mastered one skill will you be taught the next.
Kelvin teaches the course in a step by step manner making it easy to follow, understand and improve your game.
- Module 1: Hand values, board texture, betting strategies, postflop strategies & more.
- Module 2: Stack size, assessing your opponent, playing draws, pot and implied odds, stack depth.
- Module 3: Combinatorics, preflop play, semi-bluffing, profiting from aggression, playing the blinds.
- Module 4: Bluffing, hand planning, bet sizing, multi-level thinking, isolating, using a HUD.
- Module 5: Early stage play, middle stage play, ICM and bubble play, end game, final table, heads up poker strategy.
- Module 6: Over betting, donk betting, lead betting, check-raising and 3 betting.
This course covers a huge amount of information on MTTs and in total will have over 80 hours of video content. You can find out more about the course in this short video:
If you’re looking to learn MTTs quickly, there is no better poker training site than PokerNerve.
Here is a testimonial from one of the course graduates:
PokerNerve’s MTT Course Testimonials
“2 years ago, I was struggling to beat the low stakes. Getting on the Road to Success was the best decision I ever made. It taught me the skills I needed, not just to beat the low stakes, but to go on to crush the mid & even the highest stakes available.
This summer (2017) I made the final table of the WSOP Main Event (for a cool $1.2M) & then won a €25,000 tournament at the GPC for €250k. I wouldn’t be where I am today without the Road to Success.
My ROI for the $690 investment is something over 100,000%, so I think it was a good investment 🙂
Jack – England
This course also comes with a 7-day Free Trial with one click cancellation so you can test out this tournament poker training risk-free.
Here are some examples of the teaching of Acesup and how he plays on the table:
The premium course is currently retailing at $690 (once off) and the basic at $139 but thanks to our pokernerve coupon code get 30% off (over $200 off the premium course and $40 off the basic course) using coupon code “HowToPlayPokerInfo”.
More content is continually being added to the course which comes with a price increase – so get in now to make sure you get it at the lowest price.
This is the number 1 recommended site due to its awesome content, great successes stories, and the fact that it focuses on soft tournaments. Plus there is the free trial which allows you try out the entire course with unrestricted access.
Upswingpoker is among the new breed of well-designed poker training sites with modern poker content.
This website was started by Doug Polk and Ryan Fee – for those of you who have never heard of Doug he is a high stakes crusher who has become a poker superstar in the last few years.
Here are some of their main poker coaching products:
Upswing Poker Lab
The Upswing Poker Lab is a No-Limit Holdem membership training course that is updated each month with in-depth theory modules.
This poker training is getting awesome reviews as it has everything required to bring you from a complete beginner poker player, up to a very high level. The only requirement for starting with the lab is that you know the rules of the game (this course starts at the very basics).
Upswing have created a comprehensive guide that brings together a combination of the skills that both Doug and Ryan have both gained over countless hours studying in the lab and on the felt crushing the highest stakes possible both live and online.
The course is broken down into 6 Modules which you should work through in this order:
- Lab Core Strategy
- Advanced Lab Strategies
- Live Poker
- Plays And Explains
The advanced strategies cover some high-level concepts such as overbetting (one of my favourite strategies) and aggressive 4betting, that (if correctly implemented) will take your poker game to a new level.
Pros of UpswingPoker Lab:
- 42 modules that cover a huge variety of poker situations
- 79 Doug Polk theory videos which go into great detail and teaches how to apply on the table.
- Lot’s of hand charts to form the foundation of your poker game
- The private Upswing Poker Facebook page for asking the Pros (or other members) questions – this is very valuable and great if you are looking to find like-minded people to learn with.
- Fresh content added regularly
However, my favourite part of the lab is the hand range viewer which tells you exactly which hands you should be playing for basically every starting hand situation:
This takes the guesswork out of your preflop game and gives you a really solid base to work from. If you are new to poker or haven’t seen ranges like this before, you will see huge leaps in your game just by following these charts.
If you would like to learn more, I walk through the upswing poker lab in a LOT more detail in my video review here:
Get $25 off the Upswing Lab (monthly, semi-annual or annual) using Upswing Poker coupon code “playpoker2”.
Heads Up No Limit Mastery
If you are a heads up player, Heads Up No Limit Mastery priced at $999 may be something you will want to check out – particularly if you are playing small stakes poker (100nl or higher). You can read more about the program at our heads up mastery review.
The Hand Reading Lab
If you are truly dedicated to improving your hand reading skills, you can look no further than SplitSuit’s flagship course The Hand Reading Lab – one of my favourite pieces of training content.
Being able to read a players hand is one of the most important skills in poker and translates no matter if you’re playing heads up, 6max or full-ring, live or online. This skill is comprehensively developed from the ground up in The Hand Reading Lab course.
The lab is a step by step system which teaches you how to put your opponent on the correct range at the right times so you can bluff more effectively, value bet more thinly and increase your overall win rate.
The course contains 27 videos which begin with the Law of The Three Ls for reading hands: Linear, Logic and Learning which help you put a structure around the hand reading process.
Other videos cover important concepts such as:
- the shapes of ranges,
- playing in 3bet and 4bet pots
- exploiting capped ranges
- flopzilla training
- lots of great examples plus more.
Here is the full course content:
You are guaranteed to see huge advances in your hand reading ability if you put in the time with this course.
This poker course is focused primarily at $1/$2 and $2/$5 live but I would recommend this course to anyone who is serious about poker, no matter their game type.
Bonuses included with the course include:
- $60 value Hand Reading webinar
- $35 Hand Reading Live Tags
- $25 Flopzilla licence
- $40 value custom flopzilla ranges
You can find out more about the HRL in the video below and pick it up here for $497 with a 30-day money-back guarantee. Note: content can be downloaded but you forfeit your right to the 30-day money back guarantee.
If you sign up to the HRL today through the link below, you will get a free 2.5 hour webinar on “playing vs unknowns” absolutely free. Just email me at email@example.com with your receipt and I will send it across 🙂
Splitsuit’s work is always top drawer and to see a sample of his content you should definitely check out the SplitSuit blog or all of his premium content here.
AdvancedPokerTraining is a cool tool which isn’t like many of the other training sites out there – it’s a live poker training experience. (We take a more detailed look at this site in our Advanced Poker Training review here.)
While training you play hands against AI opponents allowing you to get real-time advice and feedback on your game.
Additionally, you can quick fold hands which you don’t plan on playing meaning the game moves FAST. This means you can condense your training into a very short amount of time.
The other feature of this training style is that it allows you to work specifically on the weakest part of your game. For example, if you have trouble exploiting weak passive players, set the game to include weak passive players and learn how to beat them quickly.
Are you unable to deal with extremely aggressive players? You can adjust the players on the table to work on that too.
When you start up a game you will be faced with this screen which allows you to adjust the game to however you want:
Then you can move onto the table where you can start learning:
You can also get hold of weekly reports which tell you the weakest parts of your game and areas you need to focus.
You can try out this training for free by signing up here – however, the majority of the choices are locked unless you upgrade to a premium account.
With a premium account you have the following options:
- Game choices of: Fullring, 6max, heads-up (cash or SNG), single table tournaments or multi-table tournaments.
- Difficulty choices of: Easy to very hard
- Blind levels $1/$2 to $500/$1000
- Player mixes of passive to aggressive or unknown
- Rotated positions or fixed
- Various hand types
As a result, you can target any part of your game that needs work, play many hands quickly and get real-time feedback on your choices – it is an extremely fast way to improve your game.
And don’t think the bots on the table are terrible, the hardest settings are very difficult.
The premium account costs $29 per month with discounts for upfront payments of semi-annual ($119) and annual ($199) when using the AdvancedPokerTraining coupon code “HOWTOPLAY“ (25% discount). You should definitely try before buying which you can do with a free account using the link below.
Check out more details on AdvancedPokerTraining in their video below:
TournamentPokerEdge has been around since 2010 so they are well versed in MTT training. They have some awesome pros who crush at the tables and a cheap price point for access to training.
TournamentPokerEdge is slightly different to PokerNerve. This is a more traditional training site which produces videos on various topics in no particular order. PokerNerve, on the other hand, has a complete course which will take you from a beginner to an advanced level of skill in MTTs. Although, the material TournamentPokerEdge produces is top notch.
You can stream or download the videos for online use with TournamentPokerEdge.
Notable Pro players: Casey “bigdogpckt5s” Jarzabek, Jonathan Wein, Ryan “HITTHEPANDA” Franklin, Tim “TTwist” Kelly, Shaun “Cougars4444” Hendrickson.
TournamentPokerEdge releases new videos almost every weekday which includes: live sweats, theory videos and general play. They also offer tournament poker strategy articles, pro blogs and a member forum in which the pros are VERY active and a tournament strategy podcast.
Cost: $39 per month or $299 yearly with no signup fee.
Focus: Exclusively multi-table tournaments
Stakes: All MTT stakes
Pros of TPE:
- Videos almost every single day
- No sign-up fee
- Forum with frequently answered questions
- Video release rate is over 1 per day
Cons of TPE:
- Not the website for you if you want to learn anything but tournament poker
- Style of teaching with “unorganised database” of videos is outdated.
Here is a walk-through of the site from a few years back:
When signing up for your first month, make sure that you use tournament poker edge coupon code “GREENCHIP” to get $10 off.
The majority of the training I recommend on this page is NLHE based for one reason: NLHE is the most popular game of poker and hence is the type of training that most players are trying to find. However, there is a new game in town and that is PLO (Pot Limit Omaha).
Omaha in some ways is similar to Holdem – there are the flop turn and river community cards so it will be familiar to a traditional NLHE player – but it plays very differently. Since you are dealt 4 cards preflop, you have 6 combinations of 2 card hands possible in your holdings (in other words you have 6 hands at the same time). This means equities run closes together than Holdem and makes Omaha more of a drawing game in comparison to Holdem.
A lot of Holdem players are moving over to Omaha because there:
- The regs aren’t as skilled as Holdem
- There is a lot of fish and hence money to be made in Omaha
- The game is a lot more exciting
So we need some training for Omaha in this list of poker courses and training 🙂
If you are just are interested in learning PLO we recommend you start off with PLO QuickPro Stats. Here is John to describe what PLOQuick stats is all about:
This book costs $19 on Amazon, but you can get an awesome deal where you grab it for just the shipping costs. You can check that deal out here.
For more advanced training, PLOQuickPro’s flagship online training comes in the form of their Win$1K. This course is designed specifically for new or transitioning NLHE players.
There are over 15 hours of hours of carefully crafted exams, PDF’s, slide shows and detailed hand history review and this curriculum shows you how to build a complete framework of PLO theory.
I just jumped into the course and not having known much about PLO (played a couple times before compared to 1000’s of hours of NLHE), I was extremely satisfied with the content.
The first module is designed to draw parallels between NLHE and PLO so that transitioning players can immediately grasp the adjustments you need to make when playing PLO. After watching the first module I jumped into a game and felt I had a much better idea of my overall strategy and the adjustments I needed to make.
There are four video modules which can be broken down into the following lessons:
Module 1: The core PLO concepts, the counter-intuitive approach, creating profitable postflop scenarios
Module 2: Opening ranges, 3betting, 4betting, blind play
Module 3: Board textures, cbetting, default lines, bluffing
Module 4: Turning the corner, Crossing the river, game management
If you have ever thought about trying PLO, this is the course you need to get you up to speed on the game. This is exactly the training a Holdem player needs to transition to Omaha quickly and if you play anything but the 2 or 5nl, this course will pay for itself in no time. You can pick the course up for $497 or 6 payments of $97.
Here is an example of the owner of PLOQuickPro reviewing a hand history so you can check out his style:
You can learn more about PLOQuickPro and the Win$1k course here.
PokerWarmUp.com is a training type applicable to all poker games. This training site teaches you how to warm up and cool down before and after your game. Just like a professional golfer would warm-up before he plays a big tournament, a professional poker player should warm-up too (or even casual player who wants to improve).
The warm-ups are designed to help you stay in the ‘zone’ while on the table. For anyone not familiar with the zone, it’s the most profitable state you can play poker where every decision you make seems to be on the money. Otherwise known as a ‘flow state’.
The three main reasons to warm-up according to the PokerWarmUp.com is:
- Allows you to sink into the action prior to hitting the tables
- Lowers the chance of Tilt!
- Improves your poker study as you play
Pokerwarmup.com helps create a structure around your play and study by defining and setting SMART (Significant, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant & Time Orientated) goals. This ensure that every session you know what you should be working on and has the additional benefit of keeping you motivated to work on your game.
This isn’t a general warm-up – you can set the goals and leaks to suit your own. Define and input your own leaks into pokerwarmup.com which allows you to track and work on them over time. The types of leaks you can define could be technical, mind, concentration & focus and distractions around the table.
You can also make use of their session timer – I would use this to make sure I take short breaks every hour to keep my mind fresh.
The premium version of the PokerWarmUp starts at $3 per month or you can grab it for $30 for the year.
Join the PokerWarmUp today and add some structure to your poker game.
JonathanLittlePoker.com is a website run by Jonathan Little (no surprise there 🙂 ) who has amassed over $6.5 million in live tournament earnings. Jonathan is well known in the poker industry and has released many products over the course of his career like his best selling poker book Excelling at No-Limit Hold’em.
You can check out his training site Float The Turn monthly training membership for $10 per month (the cheapest around) and get the following
- Members get INSTANT ACCESS to over 730 online Hold’em training videos.
- Access to a new training video approximately every 4 days.
- Also, members get to attend at least 2 live coaching webinars EVERY MONTH with Jonathan Little or one of the Float The Turn coaches.
You can get all of Jonathan Little Secrets in a 6-hour video series where he plays multiple $11 180-person sit-n-goes and wins over $1700 in just over 6 hours. This is a good choice for someone playing small stakes tournaments and wants to pick up lots of great tips for cheap at only $67. Check out Jonathan Little Secrets here.
Some of his other great products are as follows:
- Jonathan Little’s €2000 Buy-In Barcelona EPT Event Review: In this 2-hour and 44-minute webinar, Jonathan Little reviews his €2000 buy-in Barcelona EPT event tournament where he came in 7th place and won €29,000 (approximately $39,000) ($97).
- Jonathan Little’s Extreme Video Vault: Get access to over 40 hours of 1-on-1 training from Jonathan Little as he coaches his students ($197)
- Jonathan Little’s WSOP Coaching Videos: Jonathan Little teaches you basically everything he knows to be successful at the WSOP. You’ll get over 10 hours of training videos where you’ll learn how to play deep stacked, how to play short stacked, and general tips for success ($197).
DeucesCracked was formed during the poker boom era of 2007 poker and being ten years old now has a wealth of knowledge on poker of all kinds. Although it is chiefly focused on 6max you can find great information on almost all poker games types:
- No Limit Texas Hold’Em
- Limit Texas Hold’Em
- Pot Limit Omaha
- 2-7 Triple Draw
- Stud Hi
- Stud 8-or-Better
I was a member of deuces cracked for almost three years, and it really helped me take my game to the next level.
Cost: $29 per month or buy six months for a discounted $147.90
Focus: Cash games, mostly 6max.
Stakes: All stakes although videos will help micro and small stakes mostly.
Notable Pro Players: pr1nnyraid, KRANTZ, BalugaWhale, WiltOnTilt, Joe Tall
Favourite content: Real Life Micro Grinder
- 7-day free trial
- Active forums where you can ask questions and get answers from the pros
- More than 3000 videos in a huge archive
- You can get a big reduction in price by buying a 6-month sub
- No sign-up fee
- Simple pricing structure
- Lack of tournament & sit and go videos
- Low publishing frequency
- Some content out of date
RedChipPoker is a new training website, co-founded by Doug Hall and James ‘Splitsuit’ Sweeney, designed to help you play smarter poker. With a sleek website design and great free content, you know what to expect with their paid poker coaching videos and other content.
You can get plenty of free information from Redchip poker just by following their Twitter and Facebook pages.
Here is some of the content you can find at Redchip Poker:
Live $1/$2 NL Crash Course
The $1/$2 NL crash course is designed to teach you the basics of beating the low limit brick and mortar games you will find in your local casino. It covers the following topics in detail:
- C-Betting, 3-Betting & Aggression
- Hand Reading & Range Building
- Pain Thresholds & Bet Sizing
- Pre-Flop & Post-Flop Planning
- Exploiting Weak & Unstudied Players
- Game Theory Optimal Strategies
- Bluffing & Barreling
- Mental Game & more…
The MTT crash course will help take you from beginner to competent level tournament player covering the most important concepts which lead to tournament success.
- Constructing & Reading Ranges
- 3-Betting & Applied Aggression
- Stealing & Re-Stealing
- Leveraging Stack Size
- Early, Middle and Late-Stage Play
- Independent Chip Modelling
- Mental Resilience & more…
- Push/Fold Charts
- Short Stack Play
- STTs & Bounty Tournaments
You can check out the MTT crash course here for $39.
Redchip Pro Membership
For anyone wanting to take their game to the next level by becoming part of a community of like-minded people who will help you study and crush your current games.
Here is what you get:
- 7-day free trial
- Over 200 training videos from over a dozen elite coaches.
- 100+ hours of content with new videos added every week.
- Huge variety of training videos for any level of player, cash and tournament, live and online.
- Personal video recommendations for your games & interests.
- Learn with the friendliest coaches and community in poker.
MyPokerCoaching is an up and coming Hold’em training site run by Tadas Peckaitis, aimed at improving your poker game to help you win more on the tables. He offers a great set of courses for free which you can pick up at this how to win at poker blog post – I’d highly recommend you check this poker coaching site out!
Cost: €59 per month
Focus: No Limit Holdem
Stakes: Small Stakes
Pros of MyPokerCoaching
- Hands-on coaching with database analysis, leak finder video and unexploitable preflop poker course.
- Personalised coaching programs.
- Video coaching programs covering a range of topics.
- Free poker book which has some great tips no matter your poker experience
Bonus: Paid Training Which Is Now Free – DragTheBar
DragTheBar is a free poker training site which was set up by Dusty “Leatherass” Schmidt.
This site was one of the best poker resources and the produced some excellent content particularly back in the initial training boom.
Since then, they have been bought by a number of poker rooms (most recently Americas Card Room) and have made all their content freely available.
DragTheBars’s goal is to make poker training free to everyone which is great for anyone wanting to get started improving their poker game at no cost. They cater to cash games, tournaments sit and goes and also discuss the mental game of poker.
The current coaches include:
- Hunter Bick – Aka “BeachJustice”
- Owen Gaines – Aka “QTip” And “MamaCoolJ”
- Paul Ratchford – Aka “Vulcans”, Paul Hoppe – Aka “GiantBuddha”
- Nathan Williams – Aka “Blackrain79”
- Katie Dozier – Aka “Hotjenny314”
- Plus many more.
However, there are a number of issues with the DragTheBar:
- As a new player, it is difficult if not impossible to know which videos to watch or learn next when the content isn’t organised into a course or series format. There are over 1500 videos dating all the way back to 2009 so one could easily get lost in all of this poker content. There are content filters but they still return an overwhelming amount of content.
- In order to watch the videos, you have to turn on flash player. Apple moved away from flash as early as 2010 and Google sees flash as a ‘major hindrance’ for good design and web usability. It’s unclear why they are still using flash player in 2018.
- Overall the site is little clunky, loads slowly and need some tender love and care.
It’s a shame that the issues above haven’t been resolved as DTB used to be one of the best training sites on the market. It could easily be brought back to its former glory if some time and effort was put into developing the site.
Despite these issues, I would still recommend that you check out what DragTheBar has to offer as it is completely free and a good way to get started with your poker development journey. All you have to do is register in order to view the full videos.
As a first step, I would check out the two-part series: mental game at the micros by Nathan Williams.
Other Training Sites
Here are some of the other sites which didn’t make it into the list:
- PokerSchoolOnline – was previously a paid training site but has since been taken over by PokerStars.com which has made this a free to access. The only prerequisite is that you have to set up a PokerStars account in order to access the training material.
- Grinderschool – provides online strategy for low stakes players and have over 2500 videos. They have recently been taken over by PartTimePoker which has allows these videos become free to access.
- Cardrunners – Used to be one of the main training sites along with DeucesCracked. However, they have been bought out by Max Value Software and all production of training content has ceased.
- PokerInABox – A site run by poker pro Mike Gano which provides free poker strategy in the form of poker articles and videos. They also have some low cost paid products targeted at specific parts of your game such as cbetting, blind play and 3betting. I have yet to check this content out in detail.
- Gripsed Poker – A well-designed training site that has lots of free content (particularly on youtube) and paid training courses. We plan to do a more detail review of this site soon.
- RunItOnce – This is a very popular training site which we will be reviewing in more detail very soon. It includes some of the toughest poker pro instructors such Phil Galfond and Ben Sulsky (AKA Sauce123).
- HeadsUpSNG – They have a range of products focused on hyper turbos, sit and goes, and heads up sit and goes including HUDs, video packs and software.
- SITnGOGRINDERS – This sells video packs on Sit ‘n’ Go play but isn’t active on any social media platforms, podcasts or youtube. I cannot vouch for their content (as I haven’t checked it out) but due to the lack of activity, I would tend to avoid this site.
- PokerStrategy.com – A free strategy site which has over 8 million members including videos an strategy articles. Covers all game types and is a good place to start if you an absolute beginner.
- BlueFirePoker – Another old site which has ceased to produce new content.
- IveyLeauge – A site headed by Phil Ivey which has ceased creating new content since April 2017. Although they are still accepting signups, is not recommended that you join due to the lack of new content.
- CrushLivePoker – The main training site dedicated to live poker. This is another site we will be reviewing in more detail soon.
Closing Words On Online Poker Training Sites
So there are the 11 best poker training sites 2018 by HowToPlayPokerInfo. This is by no means an exhaustive list, and there could be other great sites out there that I missed.
Training sites come and go, such as Poker VT which shut down in 2015 and now CardRunners, so it is important to keep up to date on the sites on the market. So if there are any that you think should be on this list, make sure you let me know below.
Only starting out with poker and not ready for the investment of a poker website? Check out our poker cheat sheet page which will tell you everything you need to know to get started with Texas Holdem.
Good luck with finding the most suitable poker training for you!
Note: HowToPlayPokerInfo may earn an affiliate commission if you sign up to one of the poker training sites through one of the links above (at no extra cost to you).