Aug 09, 2017
Fedor Holz Reveals Keys to Poker Success to Forbes
By RTR Dennis
Just 24 years old, Fedor Holz already has a poker resume that other players strive for decades to achieve. Holz has $23.35 million in live tournament winnings and counting. This is more than any other German and it ranks 6th all time.
Obviously every player would love to get into the mind of Holz and know how he plays. This is especially the case when considering that Holz has amassed a fortune and won several prestigious tourney titles in just 5 years. And he recently opened up to Forbes about one important key to his poker profits, which we'll cover below.
Holz's Network is a Major Reason for His Poker Success
The German poker prodigy said that his passion and intensity have helped him immensely in poker. In fact, Forbes writer Darren Heitner states that Holz mentioned this over and over.
Of course, many great poker pros are passionate about the game. So what else fuels Holz’s success?
He describes his network as being another major aspect to his success.
"The key factor for me is my network," Holz explained. "I think that just the idea of you sharing your research with others that can profit from it, and them sharing it with you, is so exponentially better if you have the right people around you compared to being on your own.
“I spend a lot of time on forums and chatting with people and getting different inputs. All of us started on lower stakes and it's amazing to see how we now play the highest stakes worldwide and travel together as well."
He added that his core network is comprised of Steffen Sontheimer, Rainer Kempe, and Koray Aldemir. These three pros are great to bounce poker concepts off of because the trio has combined for as many winnings as Holz.
How did Holz Develop His Network?
The 2016 WSOP One Drop High Roller champion explained that he initially developed his network through poker forums, and now continues to chat with them through Skype.
"The network mostly developed through forums," said Holz. "Skype is basically the base of poker players, where they chat and where it all started. Blogs were also a big thing in poker. You blog about your process, ask each other about strategy and get in touch with people who you think are smart."
Discussing poker strategy with his network has helped Holz build his poker winnings. In turn, he no longer has to worry about money and is free to do what he likes.
"It's kind of sad that a lot of conversations you have people put themselves under you in some way," he explained. "I'm a pretty intimate person, so I have my close friends and it doesn't really have an impact for me. The huge thing that changed for me is the freedom. I really enjoy being free in what I do."
Holz is Now Working on His Business
One problem that plagued Holz early in his poker career was his travel schedule. The 24-year-old took around 200 flights per year in both 2015 and '16. This also meant that he never stayed in one spot for over a week and was constantly grinding in poker.
But going back to the freedom he's earned through his poker success, Holz is now able to slow down on his travel schedule. And he's using his extra time to start a non-poker business.
Holz's startup is a mobile app that helps people improve their mindset when trying to achieve success in a variety of arenas. Dubbed Primed Mind, this app can help people with everything from getting better sleep to starting their day off on the right foot.
"Basically the idea is to have an umbrella company that is like challenging this learning approach that we took in poker," Holz said. "The first product is Primed Mind, a mindset coaching app. It's been a huge part of my own success.
“I've been using it for about two years now. As you know, my last two years have been quite a trip. You're more focused, more in the zone. We have like 100 tapes in the app and every tape is specifically structured for a different situation."
The obvious goal with Primed Mind is to reach beyond the poker audience. But Holz also believes that his product can apply to poker pros too. After all, this game is far more than just luck and involves a great deal of skill.
"I think it's highly comparable to trading," Holz said. "People have a better understanding of how [trading stocks] works because it has existed longer and people are more familiar with it. You have to get used to quick, strong swings, but over time skill wins."
Live Poker will still be on Holz's Agenda
Despite the fact that he's working on the Primed Mind app, Holz also plans to play more live poker tournaments in the future. And he's optimistic about the future of the live game.
"I think live poker is the main thing that should be focused on," he said. "There's way more to be done there."
Given that he's still winning tournament titles today, it would be wise for Holz to continue playing poker until his Primed Mind app takes off. Speaking of which, he already has over 20,000 downloads within the first two months of releasing the app.