A game of poker involves a set number of cards being dealt face down to each player, followed by a round of betting where the players place their chips into a pot – called the ‘pot’ – to bet on a winning hand. The person who has the highest ranked hand when all bets have been made wins the pot. The other players can fold, call, or raise, depending on their own hand. There are also side pots which can be won by different players based on the outcome of the main pot.

The first thing you need to understand about poker is that it is a card game of chance and deception. The better you can trick your opponents into thinking that you have something they don’t – whether it be the nuts or a big bluff – the more money you will win. You need to mix up your playing style, bluffing often as well as calling.

Reading tells (eye movements, idiosyncrasies, hand gestures etc) is one of the most important things that you can do as a poker player. A player who calls often and then suddenly raises may be holding an incredible hand! This will give you the information you need to adjust your own betting range accordingly. Another crucial skill is understanding the importance of position. A player who is in late position should generally be raising or folding rather than calling.