What I Learned From My First Poker Massage

When you browse through pictures of any major poker tournament series, you’ll undoubtedly come across numerous ones featuring the pros getting massaged while they’re playing. While attending the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure back in January, I actually interviewed a poker masseuse, aiming to learn what her job was like. I’m attending my first World Series of Poker right now and there are masseuses everywhere, as befitting the world’s largest poker event.

poker massage

I promised this isn’t posed – Anthony did a wonderful job loosening up my neck

With all of that said, theoretically trying to understand the idea of a poker massage and seeing them happen in person is not the same as actually getting one yourself. Thing is, until today, I never really had a reason to avail myself of the service.

But I woke up with a terrible headache. I took a couple Tylenol. A couple hours later, they hadn’t helped.

Sitting in the WSOP Media Room, the thought struck me like a bolt of lightning – why not give a poker massage a try for the first time?

I walked down the hallway and met Anthony. Figuring that 10 minutes was all I needed, I plunked down a $20 bill and proceeded to space out as Anthony worked on getting rid of my headache.

It worked like a charm!

So, Why Do YOU Need a Poker Massage?

After reading 200 words and having gotten to this point in the blog post, you might be wondering why I chose to write about the experience and why I’m making any deal out of it whatsoever.

Here’s the reason:

Rather than play poker this morning and afternoon, I decided to dedicate a few hours to working. Working when your body is aching simply isn’t fun. In fact, it just plain stinks.

poker massage

Too often, we forget to take care of our bodies, not listening when they’re crying out in pain for us to pay better attention. Today, with poker masseuses around, I decided to pay attention and treat myself to what my body needed.

The longer I’m involved in the poker world, the more I develop a respect for the professional players who choose to make a living playing this game. Sitting at the tables for hours on end, day in and day out, is – indeed – a real grind; not just on the mind, but on the body.

While professional poker players are playing, they’re also working. The poker table is their office cubicle. Now I understand why they pay for massages. They’re not acting spoiled; they’re genuinely just trying to take care of themselves.

What about Recreational Poker Players?

I might have had the aforementioned epiphany and learned something from it, but I’m just a recreational poker player, like so many millions of other people. The lessons I learned, however, are important to remember and take to heart, and certainly applicable to non-professional poker players as well:

  • Take care of yourself and your body.
  • It’s worth paying for professional masseuse help.

Wishing all of you a headache-free session at the tables.

…and if you happen to see Anthony the next time you attend or play in a big poker event, tell him I sent you 🙂 .



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Written By.

Robbie Strazynski

Robbie founded in 2009. A veteran member of the poker media corps, in addition to writing and video presenting, Robbie has hosted multiple poker podcasts over the years, including Top Pair, the Red Chip Poker Podcast, The Orbit, and the CardsChat Podcast. In 2019, Robbie translated the autobiography of Poker Hall of Famer Eli […]



Yep, those massages are always relaxing.???Susan
I’d appreciate being able to speak with you about a different Topic having to do with Poker, & also the WSOP….You can reach me at my E-mail address.

Thanks for the inspiring article, Robbie! A massage is always great, but I’ve never looked at it like this. 😉

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