How to Shuffle Cards like a Pro

Card shuffling

Shuffling with Style

Most people think of shuffling cards as a boring necessity when playing a card game. However, this doesn’t have to be the case: shuffling cards can be quite impressive if you know how to do it properly. With this in depth guide we’re going to cover how to shuffle cards properly, from the standard shuffles that you might know from playing cards at home, to more advanced shuffles that you would see in a casino.

If you follow this guide properly then you’ll know how to shuffle cards like a pro in no time.

Using a Standard Shuffle

The standard shuffle, also known as the overhand shuffle, is what most people learn very early on – however, most people do this shuffle wrong. The reason this shuffle will never be used at a Blackjack or Baccarat table is that it doesn’t mix the cards up as well as more advanced shuffles. However, if you hone your skills enough this type of shuffle will be more than good enough for your games at home. Standard Shuffle

One of the most fundamental techniques when it comes to learning how to shuffle cards is the way that you hold the cards. Your grip is vital: if you get this wrong then you won’t have control over the cards and they will, often spectacularly, end up all over the floor. In order to hold the cards properly, you need to make sure that each end of the deck is between your index finger and pinky finger. This will give you a sure grip of the cards and allow you to move them freely.

The next step is to raise roughly three quarters of the cards from the bottom of the deck and then gently drop them back down three or four at a time. You can use your thumb (of the hand holding the deck) to help control the number of cards dropped each time. If you want to mix things up a little bit more then you can alternate between putting them on the top and bottom of the deck.

As long as you carry this out slowly, you will be in full control of the cards at all times. While this is the easiest method of shuffling cards, it’s not the most effective. You wouldn’t see this method used at a brick and mortar casino or at one of the live dealer games at LeoVegas. If you’re not the most dexterous when it comes to handling cards then you can use this method for your home games, but if you want to really know how to shuffle cards like a pro then you’ll need to learn the riffle shuffle.

The Riffle Shuffle

The riffle shuffle is one of the most impressive card shuffle techniques out there. Not only does it look really cool, but it also has a great sound that grabs everyone’s attention. In order to carry out the riffle shuffle, you need to be able to split the deck almost exactly in half: before you get started you should practice doing this to make sure that you can get it pretty much right every time.

Once this skill is nailed down, you need to place both halves of the deck face down. Then, grab hold of each half with a different hand: use your middle finger and thumb to grab hold of each half. Once you have done this, you point one corner of each deck towards each other. Use your thumb on each hand to pull the corner back and upwards, gently releasing the cards to fall back down.

If you have done this correctly, and at the right speed, the cards will flick down and pile on top of one another: one from the right hand, one from the left, and so on. This will ensure that the cards are shuffled fairly and evenly.

Just like the overhand shuffle, it’s important that you practice this slowly at first until you are comfortable enough to go full speed. The actual shuffling of the cards is undoubtedly the hardest part of the riffle shuffle, but once it’s converted to muscle memory it becomes effortless.

This is the shuffle that is used at most casino tables and live dealer games. So, if you’re playing Blackjack, expect to see this shuffle quite regularly. It might take a lot of practice, but if you are able to get it down well then it’s the best way to convince your friends that you know how to shuffle cards like a pro.

In casinos the dealers will push the cards back into a single pack after concluding the riffle shuffle. They will also carry it out at least three times. This is because three is seen as the optimum number of shuffles required for the deck to be adequately shuffled and randomised before the next hand. If you want to work in a casino then this is all you need to know as far as how to shuffle cards is concerned. But if you want to impress your friends, then there is one more dazzling flourish you can learn.

The Waterfall

The waterfall is a flourish that can be carried out after a riffle shuffle has taken place. Once you have completed the riffle you will need to straighten up the deck of cards. Instead of mundanely pushing both halves of the deck together, pick them up with your three middle fingers from both hands at the underside of the deck and both thumbs on top of the deck.

Once you have the deck held tightly, it’s time to carry out the waterfall. Using your fingers, push the middle of the two halves towards your thumbs. This will create an arc with the cards: once you can’t push up anymore, let the pressure from your fingers off and create a flat surface underneath the cards using your fingers.

If you have carried out the technique correctly, then the cards will drop down onto your hands in a waterfall-like effect. This will achieve two things. Firstly, it will get all of the cards back together as a single deck. Secondly, it will look really awesome and impress all of your friends. If you can pull this off then they will definitely believe that you know how to shuffle cards like a pro.

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