Poker is a card game played with a standard deck of 52 cards, though some variant games use multiple packs or add jokers. Cards are ranked from high to low (Ace, King, Queen, Jack) and there are four suits (spades, hearts, diamonds and clubs). A winning hand contains five cards. The best five-card poker hand wins the pot, which is the amount of money all players have put into play for that round.

Some poker games include blind bets that happen before each player receives their cards. These bets may be in addition to, or replace, the ante. If a player does not call the blind bet, they can drop out of the round.

After the betting interval, players reveal their hands. The best hand wins the pot. If there is a tie between two or more players, the highest card breaks the tie.

Learn to read your opponents. Very conservative players often fold early, only staying in a hand when they have good cards. They are easy to spot and can be bluffed into folding by more aggressive players.

A good poker player knows how to manage risk. Just learned this skill as a young options trader, and has found it useful in poker. “I like to take risks in lower-stakes situations,” she says, “and some of them will fail.” But it’s important to build your comfort level with risk-taking, she explains, because the odds of winning a hand decrease from round to round, and you want to be ready to change course when your chances are slim.