How to Play Poker


Poker is a card game played between players and in which the winner is the player with the highest ranking hand. Players place an ante and bet during each round of betting. The dealer shuffles the cards and deals them face down to each active player, who then places a bet of at least an established minimum amount. The first person to the left of the button makes a bet and subsequent players may call or raise this bet, depending on their cards and the overall strength of their hands.

After each player has placed a bet the next round of betting begins with the flop, which reveals 3 community cards. If you have a strong pocket pair like kings or queens the flop is unlikely to ruin your hand, but if you are holding a weaker hand an ace on the flop can easily wipe you out of a win.

When you play at a table you must remember to keep your cards in front of you at all times and to not reveal them to other players, even when it is your turn to act. To add money to the pot you can say “raise” and players will either call this new bet or fold. You can also say “sit out” if you need a break from the hand, but try to do so only once per hand so that it doesn’t disrupt the flow of play for the other players at the table.