Cognitive Benefits of Playing Poker


Poker is a card game in which players compete to form the highest-ranking hand. The aim is to win the pot at the end of each betting round, which consists of the total amount of bets placed by all players.

While many people play poker purely for fun, there are also those who take it seriously and aim to become professional players. Some even go as far as to compete in major tournaments in Las Vegas. Whether you’re an amateur or a pro, you can gain a host of cognitive benefits from this game.


Because of the many decisions that poker players must make during a game, it can help improve your decision-making skills. You learn to weigh the risks and rewards of each move, which can be applied in other aspects of your life. You also develop a better understanding of probability and statistics, which can be useful in other activities.

Emotional control

Poker can be a stressful game, and it’s important to remain in control of your emotions during the game. It’s easy for stress and anger to boil over, and if you allow them to, it can affect your performance. It’s therefore crucial to be able to control your emotions, and one way of doing this is by practicing self-examination and reflecting on your decisions.

Another skill that poker can teach you is how to read other players. While this is something that can be developed in general, it’s particularly valuable when playing poker. This is because it teaches you to observe things like their body language and their tells.