So, you’ve decided to venture into the world of Razz Poker, have you? Well, buckle up, because this is going to be a wild ride! Razz, also known as Seven Card Stud Low, is a game that’s as thrilling as it is challenging. But don’t worry, dear reader, I’ve got your back. In this beginner’s guide, we’ll explore everything you need to know to get started with Razz. And who knows? By the end of this article, you might just be ready to take on the pros!

Introduction to Razz

First things first, what exactly is Razz? It’s a form of poker where the goal is to have the lowest hand possible. Sounds simple, right? Well, not so fast! Razz is a game of skill, strategy, and a little bit of luck. It’s like the rebellious cousin of traditional poker games, and it’s not for the faint of heart.


But why play Razz? Why not stick to the tried-and-true Texas Hold’em or Omaha? Well, my friend, variety is the spice of life, and Razz offers a unique challenge that is both rewarding and fun. Plus, it’s a great way to show off your poker prowess and impress your friends. So, are you ready to dive in? Let’s get started!

Razz hand with 2 2 4 5 showing

The Rules of Razz

Understanding the rules of Razz is crucial to your success. So, let’s break it down, step by step:

Objective:      The goal is to have the lowest five-card hand out of the seven cards dealt to you.

Card Values:  Aces are low, and face cards are high. The perfect hand is A-2-3-4-5.

Play:             Each player is dealt three cards to start, two face down and one face up. There is then a round of betting. After the betting round, all the players still in the hand are dealth another face up card which is followed by another round of betting. This pattern continues until everyone has a total of 4 face up cards. Following the round of betting after receiving the 4th face up card, everyone gets dealt 1 more card face down for a total of 3 face down cards and 4 face up. There is one last round of betting followed by the showdown. 

Betting:        Like other poker games, Razz includes betting rounds where players can bet, check, call, raise, or fold.

Winning:         The player with the lowest five-card hand wins the pot.

Hand Rankings: For Razz, straights and flushes don’t count. That’s right friend, if you’re sitting with a straight flush to the 5, you have the best hand in the game. But watch out for pairs. Even a pair of 2’s will lose to a King-high straight flush!

Easy enough, right? But wait, there’s more to it than that. Let’s dive into some strategy!

Strategies for Success

Now that you know the rules, it’s time to talk strategy. How do you win at Razz? What are the secrets of the pros? Let’s explore:

Starting Hands: Choosing the right starting hand is crucial. Look for low cards and avoid pairs. Ideally, you want 3 cards of different ranks and no face cards. If you have three-of-a-kind, you definitely want to fold.

Reading Opponents: Pay attention to your opponents’ face-up cards and betting patterns. What are they telling you?

Bluffing: Yes, bluffing is a part of Razz too! But be careful, it’s a double-edged sword.

Patience: Razz is a game of patience and discipline. Don’t rush, and don’t chase bad hands.

Remember, practice makes perfect. The more you play, the better you’ll become. So, grab a deck of cards and start practicing!

poker game in progress between two people

Common Mistakes

As a beginner, you’re bound to make mistakes. But fear not! Here are some common pitfalls and how to avoid them:

Overvaluing Hands: Just because you have a low hand doesn’t mean it’s a winning hand. Be selective.

Ignoring Opponents: Don’t get so caught up in your own hand that you ignore what’s happening around you.

Playing Too Many Hands: It’s tempting to play every hand, but patience is key. Wait for the right opportunity.

By avoiding these common mistakes, you’ll be well on your way to Razz success. Keep learning, keep practicing, and most importantly, have fun!

Ready to Razzle-Dazzle?

So there you have it, a beginner’s guide to Razz. From the rules and strategies to common mistakes and how to avoid them, you now have the tools you need to succeed. But remember, Razz is a journey, not a destination. Keep learning, keep growing, and most importantly, keep playing.


Are you ready to razzle-dazzle at the poker table? I bet you are! So grab a deck of cards, gather some friends, and let the games begin. Happy playing, and may the lowest hand win!