The Basics of Poker


Poker is a card game that requires both skill and psychology. It is often thought to be a game of chance, but there is a lot of strategy involved as well. The divide between break-even beginner players and big-time winners is not nearly as wide as people think, and it often only takes a few small adjustments for someone to start winning at a much faster rate.

When playing poker you are going to need a good bankroll – both for every session and over the long term. It is also important to learn how to read other players and watch for tells. Tells are little things that give away a player’s emotions or nervousness and can help you read their strategy. This includes fiddling with chips or wearing a ring, as well as the way they play their hands.

If you want to bet the same amount as the person to your right, then say “call” or “I call” and place your bet in front of you. If you don’t have a strong hand, then say “fold” or “I fold” and turn your cards into the dealer face down.

The highest hand wins, unless two players have the same pair and then it is determined by their kickers (the other three cards in their hands). In that case, the player with the higher kicker wins. If you don’t have a pair, then you have a high card and the winner is determined by your kicker.