Poker Lingo: A Beginner’s Guide to Playing Poker

Poker is a game of luck and skill, but mostly luck. It requires hours of studying the odds and common poker lingo to play well.

If you’re new to poker or just want a refresher on common poker lingo, this guide will teach you everything that you need to know!

All-In

All-in is a common term used in poker. When you are all-in, it means that you bet everything on the table and have no more chips to place on the table after your first bet is placed.

Blinds

Blinds are common in poker and can be a great way to add more money into the pot when you’re not confident in your hand. When it is time for blind bets at the start of each round, usually one small bet is forced. Most common poker games use the blinds to ensure that players are still placing money or chips on the table, even if they don’t have a good hand at the time.

Call or Check

If you are not confident in your hand, but don’t want to lose any money yet, the call is a common poker term used. This means that you will match the bet placed on the table just at this time. Checking also allows players to wait for better cards without spending money on initial bets. Keep in mind that the common rule in poker is that if no one has bet, players can check without having to worry about losing money.

Flop or Turn

The flop and turn are common terms used when playing poker. The original deal will have two cards, and the flop is the first three cards dealt after being dealt with two cards at once. The turn then happens when a fourth card is placed on to the table by dealing it in conjunction with another card that wasn’t revealed before.

Fourth Street

Fourth street is common poker lingo that refers to the fourth card dealt after being dealt with two cards at once. This usually happens when it’s time for a second deal and players need another three cards each before revealing their hands.

The turn then happens when a fourth card is placed on to the table by dealing it in conjunction with another card that wasn’t revealed before.

Fold/Folding/Cancelling

If you don’t think that your hand will win against other players’ hands on the table, folding is common poker lingo used. This means that a player gives up and quits playing because they do not feel confident in their cards or hand at this time. Cancelling is common in poker as well, which means that a player decides not to continue playing.

Ante

Ante is common poker lingo used in games that require players to place an initial bet before they can be dealt cards. This usually happens during a common hand and does not count as one of the bets made by all players for this round. If you do not have the necessary amount of chips or money to place on the table, you can always opt-out by folding.

Backdoor

Backdoor is common poker lingo used for when a player makes it into the next round by having less chips than most players at that point. This usually happens when players with stronger hands stay in longer than others and can be common among new poker players.

Bad Beat

Bad beat is common poker lingo used when a player who has won multiple hands in the past loses to another player. This common term is common among experienced players who know that getting lucky is common in poker.

Big Slick or Big Chick

When a player has two ace cards and a king in their hand, this common poker term is used. Big Slick or Big Chick refers to how players hold on to these cards when playing poker. This common term is usually common among new players because it could be a good hand or a bad one depending on what cards are dealt next.

Calling Station

Calling Station refers to a player who calls too many bets without betting themselves or raising. These common players are common among new poker players because they feel confident in their cards but won’t bet themselves into the game.

Check-Raise

A poker term that happens when a player checks and another one bets to encourage the original player to bet as well. This poker term is usually common among experienced players who know that checking and raising can be a good strategy to take over the game.

Dime Store

Usually, a dime store is common poker lingo used when players don’t have high-quality cards. This term is common among experienced players who know that the value of their hand will decrease if they don’t have high-value cards.

Drawing Dead

When a player has no way of winning, they are said to be drawing dead in common poker lingo.

Face Card

Face Card refers to a jack, queen or king. When someone says that they have three of the same type of cards in one hand, they are said to have a “pair of face cards” or common poker lingo.

Gutshot

Gutshot refers to a straight that could be made by either the last card in your hand or one of the first two.

Inside Straight

An inside straight common poker term is when a player needs one card in the middle to complete their straight.

Jackpot

Jackpot refers to a common poker term that happens when players get dealt consecutive hands. This common situation can be good or bad for the player, depending on what cards are dealt next.

Kicker

Kicker is used when a player’s hand does not have any pairs but has a high-value card. For example, if you have an ace and a king in your hand, the poker term “kicker” is used.

Lead

When a player leads, they are placing the first bet or common poker term for that round of poker.

Muck

Muck is used when players discard their cards in the game. When a player mucks their cards, it means that they are throwing their cards away.

Nuts/Nuts Flush/Nut Straight/Nut Full House

The “best possible hand” usually consisting of a straight or flush with all high-ranked cards.

Odds/odds on

Odds refers to how likely it is that someone will win. To get “odds on” means that the player with higher odds of winning will be able to win more money than someone else.

Over Card

Over Cards is when a player has more high-valued cards than another person in the game. For example, if someone has a pair of kings and another player has two pairs (kings and queens), common poker lingo would be used to say that the person with two pairs has over cards.

Poker Hand Rankings

A common poker lingo used to describe what hands are good and which hands are bad.

Poker Chips

The common poker term used to describe what a player uses as their bet in poker.

Pot

Pot is common poker lingo used to describe the game’s winnings. Players can wager their bets (or common poker terms) in the common poker lingo “pot” and whoever wins can take everything.

Pushing

If a player pushes, it means that they are putting all of their chips in the “pot” to bet.

Rags/Ragged

Rags common poker lingo is used when a player’s cards are of low value.

Rake

The term used to describe how much money a casino takes from the players.