Joe Navarro answers your questions: Aug. 2009



How do I know if I’m giving out major tells? I know that when I started playing live that my hands would shake with a great hand, but I think that’s under control now. (I hope anyway). I also know my heart still beats very hard in similar situations, but I don’t know if anyone can pick that up. Any suggestions in self-analyzing yourself or is this even possible? — PAUL MOLNAR VIA ANTE UP FORUM

Paul, you ask a question that everyone, including professionals, ask. Unfortunately not many people take the time to be honest with themselves. It looks like you are. Obviously if others say they can read you well then that’s a clue. I think you should assume always that someone at the table can read you. I always say “There are poker faces, but there are no poker bodies.” We, all of us, will always leak something. Try to conceal as much as you can by minimizing what you expose (face, neck, eyes, etc.). I talk about this in my book Read ’em and Reap and Phil Hellmuth has taken it to heart. One of the easiest ways to analyze yourself is to get a video camera and record yourself as you play with a few friends. Now run the video at double the speed or faster and you’ll see your tells jump out.

— Ex-FBI counterintelligence officer Joe Navarro of Tampa specialized in behavioral analysis for 25 years. He’s a star lecturer with the WSOP Academy and has penned Read ’Em and Reap, which you can find on Email Joe at and he’ll answer your questions.

Ante Up Magazine

Ante Up Magazine