Poker is a card game played by two or more players. It is played from a standard pack of 52 cards (some games add a few wild cards or jokers). Cards are ranked from high to low, Ace, King, Queen, Jack and 10, 9 and 8 being lower than 6, 5, 4 and 3. The highest hand wins the pot at the end of the betting round.

Each player has two private cards which are not revealed to the other players. A round of betting starts after each player receives his/her cards. Each player must place a bet equal to or higher than the total contribution of the player before him in the pot. These bets are called blinds.

After the flop, another card is dealt to each player. A second round of betting starts after each player receives this new card.

During this stage it is usually wise to either fold or raise. Limping is usually a mistake because you are giving your opponents a chance to improve their hands while you are still sitting there with a weak one. If you have a strong pre-flop hand, raise it to price all the weaker hands out of the pot. This way, you can maximise the value of your final hand. You can also bluff during this phase. You have to know when it is appropriate though because you can easily lose a lot of money with a bad bluff.