Six Back Poker Rules

Six Back Poker is a fun variation of Five Card Draw poker. The game is very similar to Five Card Draw except each player is dealt six cards instead of five. During the drawing round, each player gets one less card than they discard so that everyone ends up with five cards.

The additional card adds a little excitement to the game because it makes stronger hands slightly more likely in this version of Five Card Draw. Other than that, the rules of the two games are identical. It’s an easy way to add some spice to the game without changing everything up or resorting to wild cards.

Game Play

Six Back Poker begins with each player paying an ante into the pot. The ante is just a small bet that is usually equal in size to about 10% the size of the lower betting limit. For example, in a $1/$2 game, the antes would be $0.10.

After the antes have been paid, each player is dealt six cards face down. The player to the left of the dealer receives the first card, and then the deal proceeds clockwise around the table with each player receiving one card at a time until all the players have six cards.

First Betting Round

Once everyone has six cards, there is a betting round that begins with the player to the left of the dealer. This person may check or bet, and then the action continues clockwise around the table. If a player bets or raises, the other players must either call, raise, or fold.

All bets made in the first betting round are made in increments of the lower betting limit. In a $1/$2 game, all bets and raises would be placed in increments of $1.


The drawing round is where Six Back differs from Five Card Draw. Each player must discard one, two, three, or four cards and receive new cards in turn. The dealer will then give each player one less card than was discarded so that each player ends up with five cards.

Second Betting Round

The second betting round plays similarly to the first betting round except all bets in this round are now placed in increments of the upper betting limit. The betting begins with the first remaining player to the left of the dealer.


If there are two or more players remaining after the last betting round, a showdown is held to determine the winner. The remaining players reveal their cards and the player with the best five card poker hand wins the pot.

Note about the Dealer

The position of the dealer should move one seat to the left at the beginning of each hand. In games that use a full time dealer, a small disc called the “dealer’s button” can be used to represent the position of the dealer at the table. This is done because it gives each player at the table a chance to act first and last during the betting rounds.