How to Pressure Your Opponents in Poker

If you want to be a successful poker player it’s important to have good fundamentals. But you also need to be able to read other players and put pressure on them. This is what separates a good player from a great one.

In the beginning, it’s a good idea to start at lower stakes, so you can experiment with strategies without putting too much money on the line. It’s also helpful to keep a log of your play, both good and bad, to identify leaks in your strategy and opportunities for improvement.

Once everyone has their hole cards there is a round of betting that starts with the player to the left of the dealer. The betting is initiated by 2 mandatory bets that go into the pot, called “blinds.” These blinds help create an incentive for players to continue to play their hand.

After the first betting round is complete the dealer deals 3 more community cards face up on the board, this is called the flop. Then there is another round of betting where players decide if they want to call raises or fold their hands. If only 1 player remains with a high ranked hand when all players reveal their hands then that player wins the pot (all of the bets made during the hand).

Pay attention to your opponents, try to figure out what their tendencies are and how they are playing their hand. Watch for subtle physical poker tells like shaking hands and placing a hand over the mouth to conceal a smile, as well as their betting patterns.

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