Joining unusual-size ring games is a very good tournament practice. The quantity of your practice depends on the type of tournament you are interested in.
Practicing for multi-table tournaments
All multi-table tourneys are terminated with short-handed games. If you prefer to be prepared for it, you should first practice in short-handed ring-game conditions. Multi-table tourneys alone don’t provide sufficient chances to practice short-hand games, however, because you allocate the vast majority of your time at full games. After you, at last, make it entirely to the end, and table size begins to shrink, your mudah54 online level of skill becomes critical. Completing just one position up at the standings may mean as much as double your prize money.
For that reason, if nothing else, I suggest you practice a lot with head’s-up and short-handed play. If the stakes are high enough, you get nervous enough and thinking “Oh nice, now I’m a head’s up. I have no idea how I should play, and five grants are at stake.”
If you face a long drought without winning prize money in multi-table tournaments, you should consider occasionally brushing up your shorthanded skill through ring tables (because the drought implies you haven’t seen short-handed games in some time).
Preparing for single-table tournaments
If you prefer to play single-table on-demand tourneys, you should first practice on unusual-size games, because these tournaments move from full game to short game quickly. If you play comfortably and have a bit of luck on your side, you may quickly go from a full game to short-handed to head up, so you have to make sure you are ready to play at all levels.
After you systematically enjoy success in single-table tournaments, you don’t have to return and keep playing the ring game variants. And if you find yourself continuously losing at a certain level in the tourney, even if you are in the prize money, you should find a ring game of the size you are having trouble with and brush up your skill again. For example, if you are always busting out of no-limit tourneys in second place, play a few head’s-up ring games.