Holdem can be played by 2-10 players. A standard 52-card deck is used.

Before anything else, a disc known as the button is placed in front of one of the players. This disc represents the dealer position and will change from player to player in a clockwise direction after each game. Whoever is the dealer will be the last to act.

Now two players make obligatory bets called “blinds.” The player on the dealer’s immediate left, called “small blind,” posts half the lowest bet allowed on the table, e.g. $5 if the minimum is $10. The player to their left, called “big blind,” posts the full lowest bet allowed.

All bets are placed in the center of the table and is referred to as the “pot.”

The dealer (could be the button or a real dealer) deals two face-down cards to every player. At this point, you look at your cards.

Still moving clockwise, every player must now act on the bet. Players can a) call, b) fold and c) raise.

  1. a) Call. You can make the same bet as the big blind with a call. b) Fold. If you don’t want to play, you can fold. You can play again in the next hand or game. c) Raise. With a raise, you make a larger bet than the big blind. This would require all players who haven’t folded to act on the new bet. Again, they can call, fold or re-raise.

(NOTE: A raise must be at least twice the size of the big blind bet. Whether you can raise more than that amount or not depends on the betting structure of the Holdem game you play poker online. Players can re-raise up to three times if there is a betting cap.)

The Flop

When players have either called or folded, the first three community cards are dealt. This is the flop.

Players bet again starting with the small blind. Now the options are: a) bet, b) fold, c) call, d) raise or e) check. A check is a pass. A player can check if no one placed a bet before them and not go broke in poker.

Next, the fourth community card is unveiled. This is the turn, followed by a third betting round. Then the fifth and last community card is dealt, the river. After one more betting round, there is a showdown if more than one player is left.

All remaining players now have two personal cards and two community cards. In Texas Holdem poker rules, you can combine these cards in anyway to produce the best ranking five-card poker hand.

If two or more hands tie, the kickers are used to break the tie.

The dealer declares the winner.

Betting Limits

Holdem comes in three varieties based on betting systems:

  1. a) Fixed Limit b) Pot Limit c) No Limit
  2. a) Fixed Limit. Bets have a lower and higher required limit, such as $10-$20. In the first two betting rounds, bets and raises can be made at $10 increments. In the last two betting rounds, they are made in $20 increments. Betting is limited to one bet and three raises per round.
  3. b) Pot Limit. The minimum raise is twice the last bet/raise. The maximum is whatever is the amount of money in the pot.
  4. c) No Limit. Players here can bet all their chips at any time in the game.


If a player does not have enough chips to make a bet, they can opt to bet all their chips. This is acceptable since they have no more chips to wager.

These are the basic Texas Holdem poker rules.