Poker is a game of cards where players wager over a series of betting rounds before a showdown. Each player is dealt five cards and uses their own pair of cards along with the community cards to make the best poker hand. Each player also places a bet, or “ante,” before the deal and can raise their bet after the first round of betting. The player with the best hand wins the pot.

If you have a strong hand and want to increase its value, you need to make other people fold in earlier rounds. This requires you to study your opponents and make assumptions about their cards based on their previous behavior.

In early position, you’re first to act after the first three community cards are dealt — this is known as the flop. In late position, you’re last to act. This is an advantage as it lets you see how your opponents will react before making a decision.

If you’re in late position, you can make a larger bet to scare off other players with weak hands. You should also try to avoid calling re-raises with a weak or marginal hand, as this will only waste your chips and allow the aggressor to take control of the pot. Practice and watch the game to develop quick instincts. You can also find a mentor or join an online poker community to help you improve your game. These communities can also help you preserve your bankroll until you’re strong enough to play in bigger games.