Poker Terms

Poker A to Z

Act – Term used to describe the point where it is the turn of a player to either fold, check, bet or raise.

Add On – An add on is used within a poker tournament situation and means that players who are still active within the tournament are able to by a set amount of chips for an addition amount of money.

Advertise – The term advertise is used to describe when a player tries to inform players that they are holding a hand that is stronger than they are really holding. The use of advertising is most commonly used when a player is looking to make a bluff with the idea of scaring their opponents out of the hand.

Advertising Budget – This is a term that is used when giving a name to an amount of chips that a bluffing player is willing to invest in their attempts to bluff their opponents.

All In – A name given to a play made by a player where they stake all of their remaining chips on the hand that they are holding. This is considered to be the strongest indication that you are holding a winning hand but is becoming more and more frequently used to aid a players bluffing play.

Ante – An ante is a name that refers to a forced bid that all players have to place before they will be considered to be active within a hand. The ante is taken from the players account before cards are dealt and before the blinds are placed.

Backdoor – The term backdoor is given when a player requires the turn and the river card to empower their hand into a possible winning hand.

Backer – A backer is a person who sponsors a player to enter into a poker tournament with a view to take a share of the players winnings should they place in the paying final positions.

Bad Beat – A bad beat is a name that is used to describe a hand that you lose after luck goes against you. A number of online poker rooms offer a new jackpot variation where they actually reward players with a large amount of money if they are subject to a bad beat.

Bankroll – This is the name for an amount of funds that a poker player has to their disposal. The ultimate aim of poker playing is to increase this by as much over your initial investment as
possible.

Bellybuster – Bellybuster is another name for an inside straight draw. This means that a player is awaiting a card in order to make up their full strength hand and the value of the card is inside
the cards that they have already possess in their hand.

Bet – A bet is when a player wagers an amount of chips into the central pot to signal their hand strength.

Bicycle – A bicycle is a term that is used to describe a straight that is made up of A-2-3-4-5. This hand makes up the best possible hand in Low Ball games.

Blind – A blind is the name given to a forced bet that 2 players have to place before the dealer commences the game. The players who have to place the blinds are determined by the place of the dealer button and increase in value.

Boxed Card – A card that have been held within the deck during a shuffle by the dealer and becomes exposed as the dealer removes cards from the top of the deck are referred to as boxed cards. These cards are ignored and placed into the dead card pile meaning that the card will
not be active in that game.

Bring In – A bring in bet is a forced bet that is used in the stud variation of poker. The bet is a small bet that the player who has the lowest ranked exposed card has to place. They are given the option of either placing a bring in bet or a complete bet.

Broadway – Name given to an ace high straight. The ace high straight would be made up of A-K-Q-J-T.

Bubble – The bubble is a name given to a player who is eliminated in the last non-paying placing within a poker tournament. The loss of the bubble means that all players who are still
remaining within the tournament will finish with a cash prize.

Burn – The term burn means to kill a card. This means that the card will not remain active within the game. These cards are generally hidden from the view of the players so that no player knows the value of the card otherwise that would influence the game. The only exception to the card not been known by the players is if the card was a boxed card.

Bust – The term bust has a duel meaning. One meaning is used to name a hand that has failed to hit a card that they need to empower the hand. The secondary meaning would be that a player is eliminated from a tournament or poker game.

Button – The button is an indicator for which player is considered to be the phantom dealer. This button is used to signal which players are to be included in the blinds. When a player is on the
button they are considered to be in the best position to play the game from because they get to see the majority of the table act before they have to decided how they want to proceed.

Buy In – A buy in is an amount of money that is charged to enter into a poker tournament or game in order for the player to be considered active in the game. The money collected from the buy in fees are used to create a final prize pool to reward players who reach the paying
positions.

Call – Name given to an amount of chips that are placed that are equal to either the blinds or a bet that has been made by another player. This action signals that you wish to remain active in the hand.

Cap – A cap is a limit to the amount that a poker player may bet, bring to a ring table game or the amount of betting rounds that are allowed within a game.

Catch – Duel meaning term that can either reference to a player who is receiving an influx of strong hands or when a player hits a card to alter the outcome of a game.

Chase – If a player was to chase a card they would be looking to stay within a hand even though the possibility of hitting the card that they require.

Chase Card – A card that a player needs to chase in order to alter their hand. An example of this would be if a player was holding a set of 7’s, they chase card would be the final 7 that is available in the deck.

Check – A signal that a player i happy to proceed with the hand without making any further bet. This play could be used in a number of ways, either to show strength through a check raise or weakness to continue the game without having to stake anymore into the central pot.

Check Raise – A check raise is a play that involves a player checking the action to another player in the hope that there will be a bet placed into the pot. Once the action comes back round to the player they will then place a raise into the pot. This is used to signal great strength.

Cold Call – A name given to a situation where a player decides that they want to call the wager in order to remain within the game but by doing so they are are calling more than one bet. This
could be that the big blind is raised and then the player calls the bet, so in theory the player is calling the big blind plus the further raise.

Come Hand – A hand that needs at least one addition card to become strong enough to win the hand.

Community Cards – The name given to the cards that the dealer places into the center of the poker table for all active players to use to empower their hand into the strongest possible hand.

Complete – The name of a bet that is used in the stud poker variants. The bet is double the amount of the bring in bet and means that the player is willing to offer a full stake rather than the full amount of the bet.

Cracked – Term used to describe when a certain hand is beaten. Use of the term tends to be used only with strong hands such as pocket aces.

Dead Hand – A name given to a hand that fails to present an opportunity to win a hand after having an initial chance. The term tends to be used with hands that have fallen foul to the cards that are placed onto the community board. A great example of this would be a low pocket pair that has seen five over cards placed onto the community board.

Dealer – The name of the person who deals the cards for the game and does not feature within the game in any other way.

Dealing Twice – This is an agreement that has to be made between the active players so that the game alters in its framework. Should this be agreed by all players, the dealer would split the
central pot and deal the turn and river for one half of the pot. Once the winner has been decided and paid out the dealer will then deal a new turn and river card for the second half of the pot.

Door Card – Term used in stud poker games to describe the third card that the dealer gives to a player. This card is dealt exposed face up on the table revealing its value to all at the table.
Named door card as this opens the door to players being able to extract information on possible hand strength. Also the name given to the first card on the flop when playing Texas Hold’em poker.

Draw – Name of a poker variant game where players discard some of the cards that they have within their hand that is initially dealt at the start of the game. The players then draw cards from the deck.

Drawing Dead – A term used to describe when a player is in possession of a hand that can’t win the hand regardless of the cards that are still to be dealt.

Family Pot – A name that is used when describing a pot where all or most of the players seated at the poker table are active.

Fixed Limit – A betting structure that is used across a number of poker variants that are indicated as limit poker. This means that players can only stake the amount that is set by the level of
stakes that they have opted to play.

Flat Call – When a player just calls a bet when a raise would be seen as a more appropriate play.

Flop – The name given to the cards that the dealer reveals after the first round of betting concludes and the cards make up the first three cards that are placed onto the community board.

Fold – Name given to the play that sees a player lay down their cards to signal that they no longer want to participate in the currently active game.

Forced Bet – This is an amount of chips that have to placed into the central pot by a player in order to be part of the game. There are a number of reasons that a player might have to place a forced bet into the pot such as antes or when they are within the blind locations.

Freeroll – A style of poker tournament that offers tournament style game play to players without the need for the players to invest any funds into buy in. These tournaments tend to offer a low level prize pool.

Freeze Out – A style of poker tournament structure that means that once a player is eliminated they are eliminated from the tournament completely so that they can’t buy back into the
tournament. The game will be played until the final player has all of the chips.

Gut Shot – Another name given to a hand that is close to creating a straight where the remaining card needed is a value of the cards that is a number within the values the player already holds within their hand.

Heads Up – Term given to the section of a game where two players go head to head over a hand.

Hi Lo – Another variant of poker that alters the way that the game is played. The highest and lowest hand shares the central pot so there are two winners of the pot in the game.

Hole Cards – The name given to the two cards that are dealt to a player by the dealer and that remain hidden and faced down on the table.

Isolate – A term that refers to a tactic that is used to single out one player.

Jackpot – A prize fund that is offered by either the casino or online poker room that is rewarded once a player successfully completes a challenge that they set. An example of this would be
the Bad Beat Jackpot offered by a number of online poker rooms and casinos where
they reward players who suffer a bad beat above a set hand strength.

Kicker – The name given to the card that a player has in their hand that does accompanies a card that offers value into a hand. This is the card that will determine if the player wins a hand should their strong card be equaled by another player.

Limp – A name given to a bet that is placed that only equals the value of the big blind. This is a tactic that is used to try to see another card at the cheapest possible price.

Loose – A term that is used when trying to describe a players approach to a game. The characteristics of a loose player would be that they play a lot of hands and bet aggressively while playing.

Maniac – A name given to a type of player who seems to play any hand that they are dealt, playing them aggressively and trying to bluff when they are not holding a hand that will place within the winning ranks. These players are hard to play against but are perfect targets for tight/aggressive players.

Misdeal – Name that is used to describe when a dealer makes a mistake while dealing out the hole cards to players at the table. When this happens the dealer will declare a misdeal and the cards will be returned, shuffled and then the hand started again.

Monster – Commonly used in contention with the phrase Monster Hand which means that you have a powerful hand that you are hoping to win a large pot with.

Move in – Another name for an All In play that is made by a player, where the player stakes all of their remaining stack on the current hand.

Muck – Term used to name the process of when a player discards of their hands and fails to reveal them to anyone.

No Limit – Name of a poker game structure where players don’t have any limits on the number of chips that they can wager into the pot. The no limit game of poker is the structure of game that offers some of the biggest central pots in poker history.

Nurse – A player who is protecting and maintaining a small poker chip stack while in a tournament style game in order to try to hold onto their tournament life while other players in the tournament get eliminated, placing them higher within the final standings and hopefully within the paid positions.

Nuts – Term that is used to describe the best possible hand that a player could be holding at that moment in the game. Players who are holding the nuts hand tend to slow play their opponents with a hope that they will come against a player who raises the stakes so that they can counter their play and increase their winnings.

Offsuit – Name given to cards that are not of the same card suit. An example would be that an ace of clubs would be offsuit from king of diamonds.

Opener – The first player to act in a hand is referred to as the opener.

Outs – The number of cards that a player has still within the deck that can empower their hand into a possible winning hand. The number of outs that a player has available within a hand will alter the pot odds that each player carries as they look to decide whether they are willing to continue within a hand.

Over Call – Term used to describe when a player calls after another player has already called.

Over Card – Name given to a card within a players hand that is of higher value then the cards shown on the community board.

Over Pair – Name given to a players pocket pairs that offer a greater value than a pair that features on the community board.

Paint – Name given to the King – Queen – Jack cards. Named because of the design on each of the cards.

Pay Off – Name that refers to when a player makes the decision to make a call on the final round of betting even though they feel that they might be beaten.

Play the Board – Term that means that a player is using the 5 cards that are placed on the community board.

Pocket – Used to name the cards that players are dealt by the dealer at the start of a hand that remain hidden from the view of opponents. Another word for this term would be private.

Position – Name that is used in reference to when a player acts. This is dictated by the rotation of the dealer button. The later the position the better that it is considered for the player
to make an informed decision as to how to approach the hand.

Posting – Term used to replace the term of placing. A player needs to post a blind before the game can become active.

Pot Limit – Betting structure where the players betting stakes are limited to a maximum of the value of the central pot.

Pot Odds – Name given to the percentages that players have to try to work out to ensure that they have a high chance of creating a winning hand.

Protect – Term used to describe when a player alters their play to try to increase or maintain their chip count.

Qualifier – Name given to a set of requirements that need to be met to be able to qualify within a hand or to enter into a tournament.

Rag – Name given to a low card card that partners an ace. An example of this would be a card to the value of 6 or lower that is unsuited.

Rail Bird – Another name for a spectator who is watching from behind the rails.

Rainbow – A term used in the poker variant Texas Hold’em where the flop offers cards of different suits so that there is no possibility of players having a flush.

Raise – A bet that is used to signal hand strength and increase the central pot.

Rake – The amount of money that is taken either by the casino or online poker room from each hand. The amount that the casino or poker room take is dependent on the size of the central pot at the time of the hand coming to an end.

Read – The ability of being able to take information from a player and to create an expectation of what your opponent is holding within their hand. This can help a player to successfully
win a hand either by having a better hand or by being able to play a successful bluff.

Re-buy – A term used when a player enters a tournament and gets eliminated. Certain tournaments offer a re-buy that means that players can buy into the tournament again at the original buy in cost.

Represent – Term used for when a player tries to be deceptive towards their opponents by acting in a way that would give their opponents the impression that they are in possession of a strong hand.

Ring Game – The name given to a game that operates normal casino rules and the chips that are taken to the table symbolize real money rather than when a player is given an amount of chips for a small amount of buy in.

River – Name given to the final card that is dealt by the dealer and placed onto the community board. This card has been known to make or break a huge amount of hands in Texas Hold’em where the term is used.

Rock – A player who plays very tight and tries to maintain their chip stacks as they wait for their power hands that are made up of high pocket pairs and high paint cards.

Rolled Up – Term used within Stud Poker to describe when a player is dealt a set or three of a kind within the first three cards that you are dealt by the dealer.

Runner – Term used to describe when a player managed to get two cards that they need to empower their hand on the final two cards to be dealt onto the community board in a game of Texas Hold’em.

Rush – Name that describes a run of good hands or good luck that a player might experience.

Satellite – A style of tournament that offers a first place prize of entry into a bigger tournament.

Scare Card – A card that is deal into play by the dealer that has the potential to be used to give the impression that you are holding a hand that contains that card. The name is given as this could lead to opponents folding is they feel their hand has now become less superior.

School – A term used to make a player feel smaller as it pays reference to a player having their weaknesses exposed and used to an opponents advantage.

Scoop – Term used to describe when a player wins a fullĀ  pot. This is common during Hi Low games where the pot is often split.

Semi Bluffing – A play where a player holds a hand that carries a small amount of strength but is played as if it were a hand that was stronger so that their opponents would believe that their hand is better than it is and so could offer the scare factor. The reason this is a semi bluff is that the player is playing a bluff but their hand does carry some value so they have that strength to fall back on should they get a call.

Set – Name for three of a kind.

Shootout – Tournament structure where players are placed onto tables and maintain to play on that table until there is only one player remaining and they possess all of the active chips on the table. The players are then reseated with other winning players to fight it out for the prize pool.

Side Pot – A pot that is created in case one of the active players can not match the bets of other players. The remaining funds are placed into a side pot that are contested by only players who can have placed into the side pot.

Slow Play – A style of play that means a player plays their hand as if it was of a lesser value that it really is in the hope that an opponent takes the lead to raise the betting stakes.

Streets – Name given to the cards as they are dealt. The cards are named by how they were dealt from the deck so the river card would be called 5th street as it is the 5th card to be dealt onto the community board.

String Raise – A violation of how a player makes a raise, meaning that they act in more than one motion.

Stuck – Used to describe when a player is losing in a frustrating way.

Suck Out – Name given to when a card that has entered into a pot significantly behind in terms of pot odds gets a lucky card that gives the player the stronger hand and they win the pot.

Suited Connectors – Name give to cards that are held within a players hole cards that are of the same suit and one value apart. An example of this would be a 7 and 8 of diamonds.

Table Stakes – The amount that the table has set for the size of the blinds. These set the minimum bets that players can place.

Tell – Name given to signs that players give off to their opponents while they are playing that could offer some form of information into the hand that the player is holding. Skilled players are able to offer fake tells in order to make their opponents think that they are picking up on information that they can use when in fact the player is bluffing with their body language.

Tight – This is a description of how a poker player might approach a game, a player who is tight will be less willing to make bluffs and make plays with hands that they feel are weak. These players tend to wait for power hands before they are willing to engage in a betting war with other players.

Tilt – A term used to describe when a player takes a loss of a hand badly and begins to lose their poker playing mentality causing them to lose focus and so causing them to make poor poker plays that will dent their chip stack.

Tournament – A poker style of game that offers a higher amount of players than a ring game and includes a higher prize pool due to the charge of entry that the hosting company charge for players to enter into them. These are the most publicized poker games in the world to date as they make great television viewing.

Turn – Name given to the 4th card that is dealt onto the community board. Also known as 4th street.

Underdog – Name given to a player who the chances of them winning the poker game are stacked against them. That could be that they are an amateur player who is playing against a professional.

Under the Gun – Term that is used to describe the player who is the first to act in a new game. This is considered to be the worst place to make plays from because all of the other players are to act after this player and so they get no indication of how many players are going to be active within the game.

Value – There are two meanings to this term. The first meaning is the strength of the hand that a player is holding. The higher the value of their hand the higher it is seen in the poker hand rankings. The second meaning for the term is when a player plays a hand that has a slight chance of winning the hand but only slightly higher than the possibility of the hand falling to a higher strength hand.

Variance – Name that describes how a poker player alters their playing strategy. The key to being a successful and profitable poker player is to offer a lot of variance, making you a player who is hard to read and so you are able to keep the mystery factor that players start games with. While you have a sense of mystery surrounding you, players are less likely to make a bluff towards you.

Walk – Name given to when a poker player wins a pot without being contested by any player. An example is that all players fold while you are seated in the big blind.