In the game of bridge a balanced hand (or balanced distribution) denotes a hand containing no singleton or void and at most one doubleton. As a bridgehand contains thirteen cards, only three hand patterns can be classified as balanced: 4-3-3-3, 4-4-3-2 and 5-3-3-2. The hand patterns 5-4-2-2 and 6-3-2-2 that are generally classified as a two suiter and a single suiter respectively, are often also referred to as semi-balanced.
In natural bidding systems, balanced hands are either opened with a notrump bid, or rebid in notrump.
In the Netherlands a bidding system called Saaie klaver ("Boring club") that reserves the 1♣ opening for all balanced hands (boring hands), has gained some popularity.
- Francis, Henry G., Editor-in-Chief; Truscott, Alan F., Executive Editor; Francis, Dorthy A., Editor, Fifth Edition (1994). The Official Encyclopedia of Bridge (5th ed.). Memphis, TN: American Contract Bridge League. ISBN 0-943855-48-9. LCCN 96188639.