Gaming / GamblingStories

Learn These Poker Terms Before You Play

A comprehensive list of poker terminology

If you want to play poker in Las Vegas, it’s a good idea to become familiar with some poker terms before you hit the table.

Here are some of the most common terms that you should learn.


This term is used when a player wants to give up on the hand and surrender their cards.


This is the act of betting all your chips at once.


A call is a bet equal to a player’s previous bet. A player who frequently calls without folding or raising their bet is referred to as a calling station.


This can refer to the player’s turn to play or the number of bets in the pot. The term lot of action refers to a pot with frequent bets.


Also known as catching a runner, this is where a poker player makes a hand on the river or turn.


This is playing a hand that isn’t good but can improve given the board. If it’s impossible for a player to hit the hand they were aiming at, it is referred to as drawing dead.


This is the highest card on the board. For example, if you have 10 to 9 and the flop happens to be 6-4-2, then you have nothing yet but two overcards.


A flop with three different suits. Rainbow also shows that a flush isn t possible yet.


These are cards that are not used within the hand. They help determine the player with a better hand, especially if the cards are identical. For example, if you might have a pair of kings with an ace kicker.


This can refer to a pile of folded and burned cards during a hand. In some cases, it can also refer to players folding.

Heads Up

If only two players contest a pot, it is known as head up. Showdown can be a heads up but is the remaining two players at the table.

Community Cards

Also known as the board, these are cards in the center of the table. They are shared by all players in community poker.

Bad Beat

Bad luck in poker.


This refers to the strongest hand possible. The nut can change during the course of the game.


The first three community cards as a group are known as the flop, the fourth card is known as the turn, and the final card is known as the river.

Four of a Kind

Also referred to as quads, this is a hand with four of the same cards.

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