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Poker Etiquette - How Do You Behave at the Poker Table?

Poker Quotes

It's not whether you won or lost, but how many bad-beat stories you were able to tell.
Grantland Rice, Sportswriter

After many online poker players feel they have attained a significant knowledge base and seek to up the ante, they start heading out to the card rooms and casinos. While competing online has decided advantages, there is nothing that truly compares to the live experience where you are locked in combat with your colleagues in a battle of wits.

In order to save yourself the embarrassment of committing a huge faux paux while you are learning the ropes in a new environment, check out these common errors many beginners make when they transition to a live playing experience and it is not because they don’t know the rules of the game itself.

String Betting.

This occurs when a player places his wager and switches between their chips to the pot to fulfill the transaction. For instance, if a player states he or she is plunking down $50, if the individual does not put all their chips in the pot at one time, that is a string bet. This is considered a no-no, because subsequent players might not be clear on what the actual amount of the bet was and place his or her bet based on incorrect information. Always be loud and clear about your actions and place all your chips in the pot in one motion.

Showing Your Hand.

When you are playing online within the confines of your own home, you are only interacting with a computer. There is no one there at the table competing for the same cards, or scrutinizing you for confidence or weakness in your hand. In live play you have to be on your toes every second and not show one whit of emotion despite the churning in your stomach. This is a tremendous part of the live game and may take some time playing with others in this environment to adapt to. Look at your colleagues instead of the cards when they are laid down on the table.

Strike at the Appropriate Moment.

This can’t occur while playing online. You are prompted and are playing against the programming software. Some people take their time before throwing their chips in the pile or some people may strike quickly, but one thing is definite. You must always pay close attention to every word and movement to be prepared for when it is your turn. Remember, everyone else at the table is trying to make you feel uncomfortable and catch you off guard.

Don’t Be Pulling Those Cards From the Table.

If you move those cards in any direction or can’t contain yourself to pull up a corner just for a quick peek, one of your fellow players, or maybe even all of them, will notice. They are constantly surveying your actions so don’t supply them with the opportunity to accuse you of moving cards with in the midst of a hand.