Poker is a card game, typically played with a deck of cards and chips. The game has many variations, but all involve a dealer and players betting on their hands.
The best hand wins if both of its cards are the same rank (pair, flush, straight, etc). If two or more hands are tied, the highest card breaks them.
Almost every poker player will have a story about a bad beat they’ve suffered, which can be embarrassing and frustrating to revisit. However, it’s important to understand that these bad beats aren’t always the result of bad strategy and can be a learning opportunity.
How to read your opponents
When you’re new to poker, it can be tempting to get tunnel vision when looking at your own hand. You want to focus on the strength of your hand and what you might hit on the board, but don’t forget about how your opponent bets too!
The act of playing your strong hands passively, such as checking and calling, instead of aggressively, such as betting and raising, is a common strategy. It can be a good way to conceal your hand strength and increase your chances of winning.
While it’s sometimes helpful to play your strong hands passively, it’s also a very dangerous strategy. This is because weak players can exploit it by betting and bluffing too much, which can lead to a lot of lost money in the long run.