Poker glossary: learn the terminology of the pros

Poker, like any other professional game, has its own terminology and numerous technical terms to define certain aspects and moves of the game. It is important to handle them with ease, especially in the early stages of learning, when the amateur player has the enthusiasm and desire to learn, but fails to understand certain aspects of the lesson.

In this sense, it is essential to master poker terms and all those that are part of the so-called professional poker glossary. But what is the real purpose of mastering professional terminology?

The truth is that it is very convenient for the mind to start working with its own glossary. In poker, mental agility is fundamental and knowing what each term refers to is essential to ensure the mental agility needed to aspire to victory.

The importance of applying a word to every aspect of the game

If there is one good thing about English, it is that it has a very specific vocabulary and it is very easy to apply one-word terms to aspects that in other languages would take two sentences to explain.

Therefore, it is vital that the player who aspires to professionalize his game knows the specific terminology inside out. A glossary in poker, physical or mental, is essential to ensure that the player is able to read it correctly during the game.

During the learning phase, which can last for years and in which it is necessary to practice and practice for hours, it is essential to know at least some of the most basic poker terms to be able to situate oneself as soon as possible in the game.

Just as it happens with babies, who only learn to speak as they listen to others, an amateur player can only become fluent in the poker glossary if he repeatedly listens to professionals speaking the jargon of the poker elite.

Human language is mimetic, it is capable of imitating signals from its surroundings, such as accents or tonalities, to better fit in with the environment. This mechanism of human integration can be of help in trying to relate words to the aspects to which they refer, and that allows to retain in memory their meaning. This, for a novice poker player, can be fundamental to be able to handle with fluency one day the typical poker terms.

Live broadcasts, televised events and more

Aside from having the willpower and discipline to play consistently to improve your game, you also need to make an effort to watch poker events on television and listen to the commentators. The best way to learn is to hear the best people talk about it live, and in this sense both broadcasts on streaming platforms and live poker events can be a golden opportunity for you to start building your own poker dictionary.

Keep in mind that televised broadcasts can not only help you to integrate certain poker terms into your regular vocabulary, but also allow you to have a kind of unique showcase to observe aspects that during a poker game you can't even contemplate, such as nervous tics, ways to reveal a bluff or other aspects related to body language.

They are also very useful for making poker a much more visual game, which is helped by certain on-screen indications where some of the most common poker terms can be seen. Bankroll, stack, preflop, outrun, play off, variance tells are just a few of the many poker glossary words that are often heard and read on live broadcasts.

Specialized poker terminology: the most common concepts

Some words that you might find in a poker dictionary are easily recognizable because they even have their own meaning within the idioms of popular culture, but others are only used in very specific situations and only acquire meaning in a very specific context.

In order for you to learn to handle specialized terminology like a pro, we have included some of the most important aspects that you may have overlooked and that are important for you to know if you are in the process of training.


All-in means all-in. All the chips a player has in his possession, bet in a single move. If we translate it literally from English, it means "all in" (it would be all in the pot, which is what it refers to).


It is a term used when talking about a straight completed using the turn and river cards. It is related to the expression "runner-runner", which is used when one wants to say that a hand has been obtained thanks to having tied the right cards both on the turn and on the river.


In Spanish, the word "paralizar" is used a lot to refer to this anglicism, usually to say that "the deck has been paralyzed". Cripple the deck is something that happens when a player has some cards and in the community cards the other missing cards of the same suit come out.

For example, if in the community cards there are two kings and a player has among his cards two kings, it is said that the deck has stalled because no one else can aspire to match him. Although it is not among the best known, it is one of the most important terms in the poker dictionary.


It is the dealer, the one who deals the cards to the players and links the hands with the community hands. In online poker games, the dealer can be automatic or manual. Normally, players who want to practice or play at a good pace usually set the dealer to automatic, an option that is not available in face-to-face poker.


Only the most novice players will not know what the flop is. The flop is one of the most common poker terms because it is used in practically every game. It refers to the three community cards together, placed face up.

For this reason, the play that precedes the revelation of these three cards is called preflop, another of the basic concepts of any self-respecting poker glossary.


A kicker is an unpaired card that has been used solely to determine the best of two nearly equivalent hands. The kicker is of paramount importance in Hold'em games, as it can define the player with the best hand on many occasions.

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