Poker is a card game where players bet chips or cash into the middle of the table (the pot) when it’s their turn. The player with the highest hand wins. Before the game starts players must ante something (the amount varies by the game) to get dealt cards. Once everyone has their cards the dealer puts three community cards on the board that anyone can use (called the flop). Once betting is complete the dealer will put another card face-up that you can use in your hand (called the turn) and then the final betting round takes place.
A good poker player knows how to read other players and watch for “tells.” Tells are the little habits of a person that tell others what they are holding. For example, if someone who normally calls a lot of hands raises the bet a lot on the flop it is a good indication they have a very strong hand.
The main thing to remember is to be patient and stick with your strategy. New players will always lose a few hands in the beginning, but it’s important not to get discouraged. Just keep playing and learning more about the game and you will be able to improve your winning percentage over time.
It is also helpful to start at the lowest limits. This will allow you to play versus weaker players and learn more about the game without risking too much money.