Poker is a card game played by two or more players. The object of the game is to win money by placing chips in a pile called the pot. To do this, you must have a good poker hand or make a bet to compete with other players. You can also make side pots in which you place a smaller amount of money for the chance to win more.

Poker teaches you to be logical in thinking about the game and how to play it. You need a lot of mental energy to play well and the more you practice, the better you get. It is believed that regular poker play can help delay neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s.

In poker, you must learn how to read other people. You can do this by studying their body language and how they react in certain situations. This will help you understand what type of player they are and how to play against them.

You must be able to change your strategy quickly and accurately to match your opponent’s actions. For example, if the guy to your right starts raising and re-raising every time they have a strong hand, you need a plan B to stop them.

Having the ability to change your strategy quickly is an important skill in any game, but it’s especially critical when playing poker. This can help you avoid making bad decisions under pressure. It also helps you improve your resilience, which can benefit you in other areas of life.