How to Play Poker

Poker is a card game where the players have chips that they can bet with. Each player is dealt two cards and aims to make the best five card “hand” using their own two cards and the 5 community cards. A player who makes a good hand can win the pot (all of the chips bet so far).

To play poker, a pack of cards is shuffled and passed clockwise from one player to the next until a jack appears. The player receiving the jack becomes the first dealer. Players then bluff or call bets and raise them, sometimes revealing their cards as they do so.

The more information you can collect about a hand, the better your chances of winning. Some tells are subtle and hard to notice, others more obvious. For example, a person who blinks a lot is usually bluffing; someone who puts their hands in their pockets has likely bluffed successfully; and if they shake their hands, it probably means they are nervous.

If a player doesn’t want to remain in the pot, they must put in enough money to match the total stake of all the players who have raised so far. If they don’t do this, they may be forced to fold, and lose their original stake plus the amount of any further bets. Alternatively, they can raise the amount of their bet again or drop out of the hand altogether and not compete for the pot.