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# More practice drills for blackjack

26 December 2015

As I said in a previous article, you should do some drills continually to maintain your skill as an elite blackjack player. When it comes to blackjack, there are some drills designed to obtain a specific skill, others are for improving proficiency and still others should be used as a type of warm-up drill just before playing.

Pro bowlers, baseball players, and golfers all do a lot of practice before the real event. You should do the same before playing blackjack. Here are some more drills to help build proficiency and speed.

Drill 4: Single-Card Deck Countdown

Since you are counting down a balanced deck (I’m using the Hi-Opt I as an example) that should start and end the deck with a zero. You also want to know the value of the 52nd card before you flip it over. For example, if your count is minus-1, the last card must be a low card (plus-1) to bring the deck back to zero. Do not shuffle if you are incorrect. Count down the same deck again until you get it right.

Drill 5: Two-Card Recognition Drill

You will quickly learn to speed up your counting if you practice turning over two cards at once. That is similar to what you will see in a casino. Continue to do the running count and try to estimate what the final two cards are before you turn them up. This should help build your speed.

You want to be able to go through the entire deck within 30 seconds. That will allow you to play against any dealer, anywhere, anytime.

Drill 6: Increasing Your Counting Speed

To help increase your speed while counting cards, consider this technique. Instead of mentally saying “plus 1" or “plus 5 only say “1” or “5”. Use the number only when in the plus or positive count. On the other hand while in the minus or negative count state “mi-1” or “mi-5.” This way your are using only one syllable to say “mi” instead of two syllables with “mi-nus.” Do the same thing when saying “zero”. Silently say “Z” instead of “ze-ro.”

The idea is to use one syllable instead of two. This technique will greatly increase your counting speed. Remember, you are trying to count down a full 52-card deck in 30 seconds or less.

Bet-You Didn’t Know

• Many players know the red \$5 chips are called “nickels.” The green ones are “quarters” and “blacks” are \$100s. What about “yellows” and “chocolates”? They are the \$1,000 and \$5,000 valued chips respectively.

• The first written record mentioning modern appearing dice was found in a 2,000-year-old Indian Sanskrit (classical language of India) manuscript.

• It was in 1993 that Americans for the first time made more trips to casinos than to major league ballparks.

• In the first year of operation, 2004, Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville at the Flamingo Hotel-Casino in Las Vegas served over 988,000 margaritas.

• Prize fights prior to 1900 were fought bare-knuckled, and often lasted up to more than a hundred rounds.

• The dome on Monticello, President Thomas Jefferson’s home, concealed a billiards room. In Jefferson’s day, billiards was illegal in Virginia.

• The name “Airport” was first coined in Atlantic City, New Jersey in 1919 to designate its first airfield, Bader Field, which was accessible from both air and water.
Recent Articles
Best of John Marchel
John Marchel
John Marchel is an author, speaker, teacher and player -- what John plays are casino games. He’s been a casino player for over 25 years and has played successfully in Europe, Panama, the Caribbean, Canada, Atlantic City, Las Vegas, on Indian reservations, cruise ships and in over 350 casinos throughout the US. He is also the author of six books about gambling, and has written numerous magazine articles and is currently a columnist for three gambling magazines and one internet magazine.

Since 1988 John has combined his experience as a manager, teacher and player to present seminars and lectures about gambling. In addition, John has had an Internet website since 1995 that offers books, special reports and tips about gambling. He also publishes a monthly Internet gambling newsletter. The newsletter keeps subscribers alert to trends, information and winning techniques that allows them to be more successful when visiting casinos.

#### John Marchel Websites:

johnmarchelgambling.com

#### Books by John Marchel:

KISS Guide to Gambling
John Marchel
John Marchel is an author, speaker, teacher and player -- what John plays are casino games. He’s been a casino player for over 25 years and has played successfully in Europe, Panama, the Caribbean, Canada, Atlantic City, Las Vegas, on Indian reservations, cruise ships and in over 350 casinos throughout the US. He is also the author of six books about gambling, and has written numerous magazine articles and is currently a columnist for three gambling magazines and one internet magazine.

Since 1988 John has combined his experience as a manager, teacher and player to present seminars and lectures about gambling. In addition, John has had an Internet website since 1995 that offers books, special reports and tips about gambling. He also publishes a monthly Internet gambling newsletter. The newsletter keeps subscribers alert to trends, information and winning techniques that allows them to be more successful when visiting casinos.

#### John Marchel Websites:

johnmarchelgambling.com

#### Books by John Marchel:

KISS Guide to Gambling