How to Be Respectful and Courteous at the Poker Table

Whether playing poker as a hobby, as part of a club, or at the professional level, players are expected to be courteous and respectful to all. Soft play will result in penalties, and may include chip forfeiture or disqualification. Examples of such violations include persistent delay of the game, unnecessarily touching another player’s person or cards, repeatedly acting out of turn, maintaining poor card or chip visibility and countability, betting out of reach of the dealer, offensive hygiene, and excessive chatter.

If a player is not at his or her seat for the initial deal, that hand is dead and he or she is not entitled to any chips. Players who are out of their seats may be moved to an empty table by a staff member. The same rule applies for tournament and satellite seats.

When a player is holding a strong poker hand, they should consider betting in order to encourage their opponents to call bets and give them information about their opponent’s hand strength. This will also raise the value of the pot. However, it is important to protect your hand. If a player has an obvious mark on their cards, the hands are considered dead and must be mucked.