Texas Holdem Poker

Texas Hold'em is the most popular variation of poker played today. Hold’em is a community card game where players are dealt 2 cards to start a series of betting ensues followed by a series of community cards.

Hold’em History

The game itself dates back to the early 1900s in a town called Robson, Texas (hence the name “Texas” Hold’em). The game first reached casinos in Las Vegas in 1967 but was known simply as Hold’em at the time. The Golden Nugget was the first casino in Las Vegas to offer the game.

How Texas Holdem is Played

A typical Texas Holdem hand begins with 2 players posting a small blind and big blind. These are forced bets to build a pot (the prize of the hand) and get the action going in the hand. Then, every player at the table is dealt 2 cards and players have a chance to fold, call or raise the original big blind. Once the first round of betting is complete, 3 community cards (the flop) are dealt which are shared by all remaining players in the hand. Players then combine their 2 cards with the 3 community cards to try to determine who has the best. Players can check (which means no bet), call another player’s bet, or raise the pot at this point before the next card is dealt. Once the betting is complete, a 4th community card is dealt known as the turn. Once again players have a chance to bet before seeing the last card known as the river. Once the river is dealt players can continue betting until players have either folded (decided they no longer want to continue in the hand by throwing their cards in the middle), or the betting is complete. At this point all remaining players flip over their cards, and the player with the best 5 card hand wins the pot. Players do not have to use their 2 cards. If all cards on the board make the best possible hand the pot is chopped (split evenly) amongst all players still in the hand. The best hand is decided by the poker hand rankings chart.

Texas Hold’em Strategy

Though the above may seem relatively easy, Texas Hold’em is a game of skill and requires many years to master the game. There are many poker strategy articles available on the Internet to help you learn the game, as well as poker books and more recently training sites which have players walk you through how to play a hand in video format.

For more advanced Texas Hold'em strategy, please check our Poker Strategy section.