Home » Skills » How to Shuffle Playing Cards: The Basics of Shuffling a Deck of Cards

How to Shuffle Playing Cards: The Basics of Shuffling a Deck of Cards

As a card game player, one of the most basic skills that you should learn is card shuffling.

Most people can shuffle cards with little to no difficulty but there are those that just don’t have the gift of handling playing cards. 

If you are someone who’s the latter, it can be problematic or even downright embarrassing if you’re tasked with shuffling cards during home games or self-dealt games.

When you’re someone who can’t shuffle cards to save your life, it’s never too late to learn. 

So grab a deck of playing cards and practice your card shuffling.

In this post, we’ve written a quick guide on how to shuffle playing cards. We have discussed the different ways to shuffle cards so you’ll be card sharp in no time.

How to Shuffle Playing Cards

There are many different ways to shuffle playing cards and despite how hard they look, they’re actually quite easy to perform.

The Overhand Shuffle

The overhand technique is a shuffling method that is mostly used by beginners so this is a good starting point. It looks very open and casual but this should help you get the job done.

  • Hold the deck in a horizontal manner using your dominant hand. Put the pinky, ring and middle finger on the side of the cards, while the thumb is placed on the other side. The index finger is used to secure the top side.
  • Place the bottom part of the cards in your other hand’s palm. Make sure that the deck is aligned.
  • Lift about half of the deck from the back portion and place it on the front side by moving away from your other hand’s thumb. Lift the back portion again and place it on the front side. Do this repeatedly until the cards are all squared up.

The key here is to shuffle the cards with a light touch. If you have grip the cards too firmly, you will be unable to release the cards easily. Keep doing this until you’re comfortable and able to shuffle quickly.

Hindu Shuffle

Not sure why it’s called the Hindu Shuffle but we can only assume that this technique has originated from India.  Again, this is a very simple method but looks a lot more polished than the overhand.

  • Using your thumb and middle finger, hold both ends of the deck horizontally. The index finger can be used to hold the top of the cards for support.
  • Transfer the deck to the palm of your other hand. Hold the deck in a way that the pinky, ring and middle fingers lightly grip the other side, thumb on the other end. The index finger is used to support the top part of the deck.
  • Situate your free hand above the deck-holding hand. Pull some cards off the top of the deck using your free hand. Around 10 or so cards should do.
  • Pull out more cards again from the bottom hand and stack them on top of your first batch of cards drawn. Repeat this step until all cards from the bottom hand are transferred to the top hand.

Again, just keep practicing and you’ll be able to do this shuffle quickly. If you can do this quickly, you’ll look like a professional dealer.

Riffle Shuffle

This is another simple shuffling method and is often used in casinos and poker rooms. This is a great method to learn as it’s unlikely to expose the cards to the players.

  • Split the deck into two halves. Using your thumb and middle finger, hold the top and bottom part of the deck and split the deck.
  • Using both hands, grip both halves of the deck. You can do this by positioning your thumb on the top end of the deck while using your middle finger to support the other end. You can also use your pinky finger to support the back edge of both halves.
  • Bend each half of the deck by using your thumbs and hands. The index finger is used to put pressure on the middle of the deck so it bends inwards.
  • Using your thumbs, riffle the two packets together. While putting the pressure in the middle and the other end of the deck, place both packets together by its edges. Then, slowly release the edges of each packet and the cards should riffle neatly with each other. Repeat if necessary.

Shuffle Cards Like a Pro

And that’s how to shuffle playing cards and looking like a pro.

Although these are just basic card shuffling techniques, they can really make you look sharp with enough practice.

So what’s your favorite card shuffling technique? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments!

Leave a Comment