Poker is a game of cards in which players place bets (in chips or cash) on their hand. The object is to have the highest hand when a showdown occurs at the end of the betting rounds. The winner is declared the winner of the “pot” which is the sum of all bets placed during one deal. There are many different poker games and rules but the basic principles are the same for most of them.

The first step is to ante up, this is where each player puts a small amount of money in the middle of the table before a hand begins. Next the dealer deals everyone a card face up and then the betting starts. If you think your hand is strong enough to win the pot you can say “raise” to add more money to the bet. If you raise, the people sitting to your left can choose to call or fold their cards.

When a hand is made it’s important not to show the other players, this allows the value of your hand to remain secret. It also allows the other players to make bets without fear of losing too much money on your hand.