Have you been invited to play poker for the first time? Are you heading to Vegas and interested in sitting down at a poker table to have the experience? Are you interested in designing the ultimate games room in your home, but don’t want to get embarrassed by your poker-loving buddies? No matter what your situation, if you are new to poker, the game can seem daunting. In order to help you dive into the game of poker, we have listed the main poker terms you need to know in order to understand the game and fit in at your first table.
Blind (Big and Small)
The big blind is the amount of chips the second player to the left of the dealer has to bet. It is equivalent to one complete first round bet. The small blind is the number of chips the player to the immediate left of the dealer has to bet. It is equal to half of one complete first round bet. It makes the pot worth playing for before the action begins.
An ante is similar to a blind, but everyone has to contribute a number of chips before a hand commences. Like the blinds, an ante can give the pot value at the start. If you don’t like your cards, you can fold and refuse to ante up (see below).
The button marks the position of the dealer. The button rotates clockwise each time the dealer shuffles for a new hand. The button is the most advantageous positions because the dealer acts last in a betting round.
When you call, you are committing to contributing the minimum amount of chips necessary to continue playing your hand. When you call, you are matching the current bet on the table.
If there have been no bets so far in the current round, and you don’t want to make a bet, it’s called a check. If someone after you makes a bet, you will have an opportunity to call, raise or fold.
If you give up on your current hand and don’t want to call or raise in order to keep playing, you fold. You usually fold when your hand is too weak to compete against the other players’ cards.
If you wager any amount over the minimum amount needed to call, you are making a raise. This forces other players to either fold or put in more chips in order to continue playing their hand.
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