Each one of us have our own ways of refreshing ourselves. It could be a walk in the park. It could be some time spent in caring for the less fortunate. It could even be the weekly get-together to play poker with your buddies.In my opinion, a once a week poker game does much to rejuvenate you after a long hard week. Sure, if you play badly, you may end up losing a lot of money. But that is only if you do not play your cards well. The astute poker player is aware of the luck factor and only puts forward an amount that he can afford to lose.Every seasoned poker player is aware of what the odds are prior to the commencement of the game. How much is he willing to risk? That is the question that will decide his fortunes. Plunging headlong into a poker game with a bunch of professionals without having an action plan is not advisable. Jumping into the fray unprepared is risky. It is easy to call poker a game of luck, and nothing else. Yes, you might win if Lady Luck is shining over you. If you are dealt bad cards, you might have no chance of winning the game at the very outset. Then again, a poker champ trains himself to play better than the others even with his bad cards.Poker is a gambling game of strategy. You must keep an acute eye on your opponents. In that sense it is like chess. However, poker rooms also require you to don the mantle of an actor. You have to fool your opponents into a sense of false security. Make them feel like they are in charge of the game even while you hold the royal flush. The sense of suspense in a poker game is one of the factors that separate the winners. If you are cool and calculating even when the game gets really stressful, you could well be the winner who rakes in all the moolah.When it comes to card games, poker is one of the most popular. It does allow you to stretch your mental muscles by literally giving it a run for your money. Being a poker champ, therefore, does not come easy. To become a poker champ, you have to admit that practice is the only way. Make sure you thoroughly study the rules before you challenge anyone to a serious game. Try your hand at some poker games online to get a feel of playing against real opponents. At first, you might find yourself on the losing side more often than you would like. Do not get dissuaded. Keep playing and you might soon turn pro.