How to Improve Your Poker Hands


Poker is a game of chance and psychology (though there’s a lot less skill when nothing is at stake), but it also requires a great deal of discipline and focus. Successful players manage their bankrolls carefully, stay focused and patient, and find profitable games. They are also committed to learning and improving their skills.

One of the most important skills is knowing how to read other players. There are entire books and articles devoted to this topic, but the key is not just to pick up on physical tells, it’s to learn how to think like your opponents. Learn their tendencies, how they treat their chips and cards, their mood shifts, etc.

Another vital skill is understanding the relative strengths of your hands. A strong hand is usually defined as one of the following:

It’s essential to remember that poker is a game based on the situation. Your hand is only good or bad in relation to what your opponent is holding. For example, if you hold A-K and your opponent holds J-J on the flop, your kings are losers 82% of the time. It’s also crucial to play the player, not the cards. Learn how to adjust your strategy based on the other players at the table, and make sure to always have a reason for every call, fold, or raise. The best players have an analytical approach and are constantly evaluating their results and tweaking their strategy.