Learn the Basics of Poker


Poker is a card game with many variations, but all involve betting and the best hand wins. It’s a game that can be a test of, and a window into, human nature. To master the game is a lifelong endeavor, and a deeply satisfying one.

In most games, each player puts a mandatory bet into the pot (called the blind or ante) before they are dealt two cards, called hole cards that are hidden from their opponents. Once the bets are placed, a round of betting begins. At the end of the final betting round, the players reveal their hands and the player with the best five-card poker hand wins.

Learn Position

In poker, the first person to act has “position,” which means they have more information about their opponent’s actions than anyone else at the table. This gives them the ability to make more accurate value bets. It’s important to understand the importance of position because it will determine how much bluffing you can do and how effective those bluffs will be.

It’s also important to play only with money you’re willing to lose. As you get more serious about the game, you should track your wins and losses so you can see whether you’re winning or losing. A good rule of thumb is to only gamble with an amount you’re willing to lose 200 bets at the highest limit, and to never add any more to your bankroll during a session.