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Is Poker Gambling?

Is Poker Gambling?

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People who enjoy playing card games like poker with friends or competitively may wonder if poker is considered a form of gambling.

We're here to help!

The short answer is yes, playing a game of poker that involves the winning or losing of money, poker chips that represent money, or items with monetary value is considered gambling by definition.

Yes, even though there is a lot of skill involved in poker, it is still considered gambling. As such, many casinos now offer poker as a featured game.

Poker and online poker are legal in many states, but not all. 

It's important to check the local laws in your state to be sure that you're not violating the law and practicing illegal gambling.

But don't worry, we won't rat you out.  We know that playing poker for money is the best way to play the game.


Why Do People Gamble For Money When Playing Poker?


Poker is an exciting game that has existed since the early 1800s. What makes poker so exciting--whether it's stud poker, draw poker or Texas Hold 'em--is the element of winning money for your victory.

Risk makes things exciting and worth playing.

For games like poker, the risk of losing money and the chance of winning money enriches the gaming experience.

If you've ever played poker without money being involved, you know what I'm talking about. Poker is kind of boring if you're not betting on something.

It's Only a Gambling Problem If You're Losing Shirt


Can Poker Be Played Without Money?


If you're morally opposed to gambling or simply don't want to risk losing money, there are ways to play poker without money.

One way to play poker without money is to assign "money values" to each chip, give each player the same number of chips, and play the game with the poker chips as you normally would but not have the chips represent real money.

You can use fake money to play poker for fun. You can assign the chip values to be a nickel, a dime, a quarter, 50 cents and 1 dollar.

Think of playing Monopoly. It's a game of skill that involves fake money, but it can be fun and competitive even though nobody loses or gains any real money at the end.

For example, each player gets "$10 worth" of chips. They would bet and play the poker game as if the chips represented real money. The winner of the game would be the person who won all of the chips by the end. However, no real money was won or lost.

Even though there isn't any real money involved, the skill and luck concepts are the same, and a person can still boast their victory over the other players.

Someone may be sore that they lost, but in this version of poker, at least they didn't have to go home with an empty wallet.

Because there was no money or items of monetary value won or lost in this particular game of poker, it is not considered gambling.

Poker is only considered gambling when there is an exchange of money or items of monetary value being won or lost.

Beyond using fake money, other forms of poker are exciting that don't involve money.

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Strip Poker


For adults, strip poker can be an exciting, erotic, romantic and intimate way to play the game.

Strip poker can be played with just two people for something a bit more intimate, or, if you're living on the edge, it can be played with multiple people or couples.

Instead of using money, the players wager articles of clothing as their form of currency.

If they lose the hand, they must remove an article of their clothing.

Men who are winning at strip poker against a woman whom they find attractive or are in a marriage or relationship with get to watch her slowly undress with every poker hand he wins.

There is a sense of power and glory involved that men crave.

As heterosexual men enjoy watching women undressing, the game is exciting and arousing for them.

Strip poker is also enjoyable because the person who is losing may have fun and be aroused too.



The Bottom Line


While playing poker with money is commonly practiced and the most popular and exciting way to play the game, it is still considered gambling.

Yes, playing poker with money is gambling.

However, there are other ways to play poker that do not involve money and are not considered gambling.

So whatever your favorite poker game is, have fun and enjoy!

And remember, it's only a gambling problem if you're losing!

On a serious note, if you feel you have a gambling problem, the National Council on Problem Gambling can help you.

Thanks for stopping by! Before you go, check out our Premium Line of Poker Shirts!

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