Texas Holdem Poker Rules – Official Rules Of No Limit Texas Holdem

The first step in your quest to become a world famous poker star is to learn the rules. A hold ‘em hand can be broken up into 6 distinct steps:

  1. Setup
  2. Preflop
  3. Flop
  4. Turn
  5. River
  6. Showdown

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This step is just getting everything set up to play the hand. The dealer is different every hand – the responsibility moves clockwise around the table from player to player. The dealer of each hand doesn’t usually deal the cards himself; it’s just a position that’s marked by a disc that says “dealer’s button” on it. The players can pass the deck around each hand and deal from it, but usually there’s a full time dealer who takes care of that. From now on, when I refer to the “dealer” I mean the guy who has the dealer’s button that hand, not actually the card handler.

The guy immediately to the left of the dealer each hand is called the “small blind.” Before even a single card is dealt, this guy has to ante up an amount of money equal to half of the minimum bet. In a .25/.50 no-limit Texas Holdem game, the small blind would pay .25.

The guy immediately to the left of the small blind is called the “big blind.” He has to ante up an amount of money equal to one minimum bet. Using the previous example, the big blind would pay .50.

So before anything has happened, we’ve got a dealer in place along with two blinds. The small blind has a quarter in the pot; the big blind has fifty cents in the pot.


The players will now be dealt two cards face down. These are called the “hole cards.”

After everyone gets their cards, a round of betting begins.

The guy to the left of the big blind begins this betting round. He decides if he wants to stay in and see the flop or fold. If he decides to stay in, he has to call the minimum (1 big blind) or raise any amount he wishes. If he decides to raise, all the other players who want to stay in the hand must call that amount, fold their hands, or raise it. They no longer get the cheap option.

The action moves clockwise around the table to the button and then the small blind and, at last, the big blind.

If nobody has raised, the small blind only has to pay an additional half a blind and the big blind can see the flop simply by checking.


Now that the preflop betting has concluded, the top card on the deck is discarded (this is called the “burn card” and it is discarded to prevent cheating). Three cards are then dealt face up on the table.

These three cards are the flop.

Another round of betting begins, this time it starts with the person directly to the left of the dealer (this person was the small blind preflop but now he acts first). He can either check or bet.

If the first person to act didn’t bet, the next guy can either check or bet, and so on.

If the first person had bet, the next person could either fold, call the bet, or raise it.

This betting round goes around to the dealer who gets to act last.


After the flop betting comes the turn card. First another card is burned off the top of the deck then one more card is dealt face up next to the flop. Another betting round takes place just like the flop.


One more card is burned off the top of the deck and the final card is dealt face up next to the turn. There is one last round of betting just like the turn.

Whoever has stayed in this far will then show down their poker hands. The poker hands can consist of any combination of their two hole cards and the five community cards. A player can use two hole cards and three community cards, one hole card and two community cards, or use zero hole cards and just play whatever the board is showing.

The best poker hand wins the pot.

Now that sure was easy right?

If you think you have the rules down, It might do you good to practice some. You can play for free or real money at Full Tilt Poker. Full Tilt is the poker room I suggest for all new players. It is easy to use and set up an account and they offer a $600 bonus if you want to play for real money! Click here to visit Full Tilt Poker. Have fun!