Poker Etiquette with Pro Poker Online
Poker isn’t a game you play on your own, it’s a social game that’s meant to be enjoyed by all. However as you may find with all games that involve money, there are certain rules that every player should follow. In fact it’s not uncommon for other players to get quite upset at anyone who might show contempt, or complete ignorance for some of the most basic courtesy’s of the game, as this can infer that you don’t care about what happens to their money.
To ensure it’s an enjoyable experience for everyone, you should familiarise yourself with all the rules, not just those that pertain to game-play, but the rules that site “outside the rules”.
This is what we call poker etiquette.
Regardless of whether you’re playing Texas Hold ‘Em, Stud Poker or Omaha, these guidelines will dictate how every player should behave, in online and brick-and-mortar establishments.
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Wait Your Turn
Playing out of turn is something that happens every so often. Some players might find that they get caught up in the excitement of it all and the next thing they know, they are calling, folding or raising out of turn. Not only could this end up confusing the action at the table, but it also puts the player at an enormous disadvantage.
Playing from a later position allows a player the chance to act based on the decisions of the players who acted before them and playing out of turn means they are potentially losing out on some very valuable information.
Don’t Ask to See Someone’s Hole Cards
Don’t ask to see someone’s hole cards after they’ve lost a hand without a valid reason. If there is a rule in place that requires players to show their hands, it’s there to ensure that players aren’t colluding with each other, not just for players to be able to see what the opponents are holding after each and every hand.
Remember, when you ask to see another player’s hand, you are technically accusing them of cheating, so be sure to use it only when you really feel that it is warranted.
Don’t Splash the Pot
One of the biggest no-no’s in Poker is one that you might see fairly often in the movies – when a player throws a large bet right into the centre of the table, into the pot. When this happens, it’s nearly impossible to accurately determine how much a player has bet and it’s called “splashing the pot”.
Whenever you’re making a bet, be sure to stack your chips neatly in front of you so that they can be counted.
Don’t Make String Bets
A string bet occurs when a player first calls another player’s hand and then raises it, and while it might be a popular sight in movies, it’s not great poker etiquette.
A player must declare their intentions right away – that means that if you’re calling, that’s all you can do during that round. If you are raising, you must make sure that you make the amount known right away.
Being polite is a simple but effective way of ensuring that a poker game is enjoyable for everyone involved – this includes the dealer and the other players. It can be tempting to get angry and rude when you’re on a losing streak, or simply to throw another player off, but it is also more likely to get you removed from the casino.
Most casinos have rules against throwing your cards at the dealer. In some instances, this could result in a 24 hour ban simply if your cards touch the dealer’s hand. In the event that a player has an issue with another player or the dealer, it’s always a better option to speak to the floor man.
Don’t Show Your Cards Until the Showdown
It’s bad form to show your cards after you have chosen to fold, while the game is still in play, and the same can be said for talking about your hand. This is because other players can use this information to their advantage.
If, for example, you folded with a 7-2 and the flop ends up on 7-7-2, showing your cards will let other players know that it’s unlikely another player will have a full house. This will prevent other players from bluffing that hand.
No one wants to keep having to remind another player that it’s their turn to play, so make sure that you keep up with the play. Certain poker rooms are very strict about talking on your phone, so be sure that you’re aware of the rules or you might end up having your hand killed.
Be Present During the Game Play
There are few things more frustrating than having to wait for an absent player to return to a game over and over again. When a player plays for 5 minutes only to disappear for another 20, it slows down the action of the game and it generally breads ill will among the other players. If you must leave for short periods of time, don’t make it a habit.
Let the Players Play
If you are not in the hand, don’t get involved in the hand. You might hear a player asking someone else how many chips they have left. In this instance, the player asking might not be wondering how many chips the other player has at all. These questions could be used to explore tells and if you’re jumping in to answer the questions, it could end up messing with their plan.
There are certain times when poker etiquette isn’t black and white. You might find that in some instances, you’re required to act simply because your conscience tells you to and at other times, you keep quite because it could negatively impact your play.
A great example of this is when you see more than you should at a poker table, such as another player’s cards. If you see a player’s card because of something the dealer has done, it’s considered good poker etiquette to let them know. In this case, it will be deemed a flash card.
There are other instances where you might see a player’s cards because of their own actions. In this instance, it is up to the player to decide what action to take – many would likely keep it to themselves.
Being a good poker player is about more than just knowing how to play the game – it is also about being a good sport about it. Understanding poker etiquette will not only help you to foster better feelings at the next game, but it might also prevent you from being banned from some of your favourite poker establishments.