How to Play Texas Holdem

Texas Hold’em is one of the most popular forms of gambling to date. This is primarily due to the commercialization of the game. Everywhere you look; there are advertisements for online poker rooms and television shows featuring Hold’em tournaments. The World Series of Poker (WSOP) has greatly expanded over the past decade.

Texas Hold’em is a fairly simple game to learn. There are two types of Texas Hold’em games:

  • Limit
  • No-limit

Limit Hold’em games have arranged betting rounds with an incremental and maximum bet. On the other hand, No-limit Hold’em has some structured betting with no increments or maximum bet. This is the most popular form of Texas Hold’em for tournaments. Both types can be found at online poker rooms.

What differentiates the pros from the amateurs is their ability to not “go on tilt.” This occurs when players make long-shot bets to attempt to catch-up. In the end, this will cost more than simply stopping play.

The game begins with the player in the small blind posting half a bet and the big blind posting a full bet. These are considered an ante. The small blind is directly to the left of the button and the big blind is to the left of the small blind. The button moves to the next person after each hand.

Next, two cards are dealt to each player. These are known as a starting hand or whole cards. After the starting hand is distributed, bettors can make their first wager. The player sitting to the left of the big blind makes the first move with the option to call, raise or fold. Players may take action until everyone has had a chance to bet. The competitor in the big blind can check (if no one else has raised), fold or raise.

Three community cards are then dealt face-up into the middle of the table (the flop). Another betting round ensues starting with the first active player to the left of the button either checking or wagering. After betting commences, an additional card is dealt face up into the community cards. Another betting round occurs with the first active player to the left of the button taking action. This is known as the turn. The final card is dealt face-up with another betting round (the river).

Any players still left in the hand show their cards (known as the showdown). The person with the best five-card hand (two whole cards and three community cards) wins the pot. In the chance there is a tie, the pot is split evenly.

Texas Hold’em is an easy game to learn but extremely difficult to master. The best way to be a winning player is by experiencing many different hands and reading Hold’em books about strategy. The most important idea to remember is always play your hands the same way regardless if you are winning or losing.

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