What Are The Types of Poker Hands & Their Ranking?

By Patrick Banks

Posted 2 years agoOTHER

Seven-Card Stud, Omaha Hi-Lo, and Texas Hold’em poker are some of the most well-known variations of the card game Poker, which has been played in tournaments and online since its inception in the early nineteenth century and has since grown to become a major cultural influence. 

Over the course of poker’s history, which began in the early nineteenth century and continues to this day, the game has evolved into several distinct variations, which are now played in tournaments and online.

There are seven distinct types of hands, despite the fact that there are over 2.5 million unique combinations possible with five cards. Because you may conceive of them as a hierarchy, they are referred to as hand rankings. 

A girl with two aces in her hand playing poker 

 Types of Poker Hands 

  • High card hand 

This rung on the ladder is the lowest possible one. A high card hand, also known as a no pair hand, is one in which all five cards have distinct card rankings, do not share the same suit, and are not consecutive. In addition, the cards in the hand are not in any particular order. 

A high card hand is the least coordinated of our hand rankings, and as a result, it has the lowest value since it is weaker than every one of the other nine hand ranks. Although this may seem like a lot to keep in mind, the fundamental concept behind this is really very straightforward. 

If two players are tied for first place with a high hand, how can the winner be decided? To decide who wins, look at which player has the highest-ranking card. If one player has an Ace and their opponent has a Queen as their top card, the player with the Ace wins with what is known as “Ace high.” 

  • One pair hand 

The next hand to look at is the one-pair hand. Hands with one pair consist of a single pair together with three additional unpaired cards, such as, and account for 42% of all conceivable combinations of cards. In the event that both players enter the showdown with a pair, the winner is determined by the hand that contains the higher pair. If both hands include the same pair, the winner is determined by the hand that contains the highest card that is not paired.

  • Two pairs 

What’s better than a single set? Why, of course, you need two pairs. Because the hand that wins a showdown with two pairs is the one that has the higher pair, our example hand would triumph over the hand consisting of 99TTQ. In poker the first hand is referred to as “Jacks Up,” and in this scenario, it is superior to “Tens Up,” which is the name of the second hand.

  • Trip Aces

Now we’re heading into the territory of hands that aren’t seen very often. When a card is picked at random from a standard deck, the chance of getting three of a type is just one in every 47 times. You may have guessed that these hands consist of three cards of the same rank along with two other unpaired cards. 

The hand that we will use as an example is commonly referred to as “trip Aces” or “a set of Aces,” and it is superior to the hand that we will use as a comparison, which is QQQK9 (“trip Queens” or “a set of Queens”) because Aces have a higher rank than Queens. It is essential to keep in mind that the other two cards in the hand must be unpaired in order for the hand to qualify as a full house. If these cards are paired, the hand does not qualify as a full house.

  • Straights 

Straights are the first combination of hands in poker sequence that call for the usage of all five cards in a player’s hand. A hand is considered to be straight when all five cards in it are distinct from one another and sequential in rank. However, there is a stipulation that the cards cannot all be of the same suit. 

In the context of this discussion, the hand might be referred to as “a straight to the 7.” The A-2-3-4-5 straight, commonly known as “the wheel,” is the worst conceivable straight, while the T-J-Q-K-A straight, also known as “Broadway,” is the finest possible straight. 

Both of these straights go directly to the ace. Keep in mind that the only way for an ace to contribute to a straight in a hand is if it acts as a bookend for the straight; wrap-around straights, such as KQA23, are not legal in poker. An interesting truth is that if you take off all of the 5’s and T’s from a deck of cards, it is no longer feasible to make a straight with the cards that are left!

Blackjack cards on red table 

  • Full house 

A hand that consists of a three of a kind and a pair is said to have a full house, which is often referred to as a full boat. One frequent method of characterising our example hand is as having a “full house” with “kings full of nines.” Because the full house with the higher-ranking three of a kind always beats the full house with the lower-ranking three of a kind, regardless of the rank of the paired component, the example hand beats in QQQAA a showdown. This ranking rubric is similar to the one that determines the ranking of hands that contain two pairs.

  • Straight flush 

The fabled poker hand known as the straight flush is one that is shown in movies and works of fiction far more often than it really happens in real life. The majority of poker sequence  players will spend their whole careers without ever catching a glimpse of anything like this. It should not be too difficult to understand: in order for a hand to be considered a straight flush, it must include both a straight and a flush, as the previous example demonstrates. 

The highest possible hand in the game of poker is called a royal flush, and it consists of the cards T, J, Q, K, and A in any order and ending with an Ace. If you find yourself holding a royal flush, you may be confident in the knowledge that no other hand is better than yours, and you can proceed to place your bets without hesitation.

About the author Patrick Banks

Patrick is a Berlin-based dating advisor, motivational speaker, a huge fitness and vegan diet enthusiast and the main editor at Wingman Magazine, specialised in men's health. His ultimate goal is to share with men around the world his passion for self-development and to help them to become the greatest version of themselves. He believes a healthy body and successful social interactions are two main keys to happiness.