The Basics of Poker


Poker is a game of chance, but it also teaches players a lot about decision-making.

The cards are dealt clockwise around the table and players must ante a small amount of money before the cards are dealt (in our games, it’s usually a nickel). Once the initial betting rounds are over, the highest hand wins the pot.

In a draw poker game, each player receives five face-down cards. After betting, each player can discard up to three of his cards and take new ones from the deck.

A player may also “check” in a draw or stud poker game, meaning that he will not bet but will remain in the hand. If another player raises, all other players must call or fold.

Straights: A straight is 5 cards in order, such as 4-5-6-7-8 or AKQJT. When two straights have the same value, they split the pot.

Full Houses: A full house is a pair of cards plus an additional card. The highest full house wins the pot.

Low Cards: A low card is a card of lower rank than the ace. For example, a low card is a Jack or a King.

High Cards: A high card is a card of higher rank than the ace. For example, an ace is either high or low, but is usually high.

Poker is a social game with many rules and variations. It is best played with a group of people who know how to play the game. It is a lot of fun, but you should be careful about letting your emotions get the better of you.