How to Read Poker Hands


Poker is a game of chance and risk. It is played in many different variations including Hold ’Em, Stud, Draw and Badugi. But the basic mechanics are the same: Players put in a blind or ante bet and then get dealt cards that they keep hidden from their opponents. The aim of the game is to make a five card poker hand using two of your own cards and three of the community cards on the table.

The first round of betting is called the flop. During this stage the third community card is revealed. If you have a strong poker hand you should bet aggressively at it to force weaker hands out of the pot. If you have a weak poker hand then you should fold.

There are a lot of poker books written by pros that suggest you should only play the very best hands such as a high pair (aces, kings, queens, jacks or tens) or a straight or flush. This is a good strategy if you’re playing to win but if you want to have fun then play what you feel like.

The more you play poker the better you’ll become at reading other players. A lot of poker reads don’t come from subtle physical tells, but instead from patterns in a player’s betting behavior. For example if you see a player calling every bet in early position then they likely have a strong poker hand.

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