How to Play Poker

Poker is a card game in which players place bets into a pot in order to win. The highest hand wins the pot. The game is usually played with chips of varying color and value. Typically a white chip is worth the minimum ante, while a red chip is worth five whites. Players buy in to the game for a certain amount of chips, usually at least 200.

Before the betting round begins each player gets two hole cards. The dealer then deals three cards on the board that everyone can use. This is called the flop. Once the flop is dealt, players start betting on their hands. Generally speaking, the stronger your hand is, the more you should bet.

Betting is done by saying “raise.” When the raise is made the other players must call it or fold their hand. Some players may choose to bluff, raising when they don’t have a strong hand in hopes of pushing other players out of the pot.

When the betting rounds are over it’s time for the Showdown. The player with the best 5 card poker hand wins the pot. Players with ties split the pot. The dealer also wins the pot if all players bust. Poker is a mentally intensive game, so it’s important to play only when you feel up to it. Don’t play when you’re tired or upset, and never gamble more than you are willing to lose.