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How To Play Poker

Poker has been a favorite American card game for well over a century, but it has especially taken off ever since amateur Chris Moneymaker won the World Series of Poker several years ago. Since then, many players who have never played before now want to know how to play poker, and specifically, how to play Texas Hold ‘Em.

Learning how to play poker is not difficult. Aside from many web sites explaining the game, or the little instructions cards that come with new card decks, just ask around. One of the best ways to learn how to play poker is to start a home game with a bunch of friends or co-workers. Many times these people will love the idea of playing a weekly game just to hang out, have fun, and you might be surprised how many of them wanted to learn the game, but were too embarrassed to ask.

Another thing to keep in mind while learning how to play poker, especially if you are playing Texas Hold ‘Em, is that the basic game and basic rules might be really simple to catch onto, but the challenge and depth comes from learning the math, learning various poker strategies, and understanding the nuances of the game—lessons that come from playing and studying hand after hand after hand. Like so many other things in life, poker is best learned by playing, but make sure to study your hands as you play.

Don’t be embarrassed if you have problems early on. With almost every poker game, and with Texas Hold ‘Em specifically, there are enough little nuances and situational strategies that experienced players can usually even overcome bad luck to beat new players. Don’t get flustered if this happens to you. Pay attention to how better players play, grab a book written by a pro, watch the tournaments on ESPN. There are hundreds of little things you can do to make sure that you learn how to play poker the right way. Most important, remember to have fun!