Xuan Liu, Helping Bridge the Gender Equality Gap in Poker

Reduced rate poker coaching is just one of the ways poker professional Xuan Liu is helping to support women in poker.

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In a recent tweet, poker pro Xuan Liu announced that she is offering anyone “identifying as a women” half price on her poker coaching fees.
World Poker Tour

In a recent tweet, poker pro Xuan Liu announced that she is offering anyone “identifying as a women” half price on her poker coaching fees.

Feeling a “strong sense of duty to support women in the game,” Liu is taking pro-active steps to encourage women to hone their skills and improve their game by offering affordable coaching.

Liu is a prominent woman within the poker industry, amassing more than $1.6 million in winnings from live tournaments and over $600,000 in online tournaments, according to the Hendon Mob database.

Liu was also recently selected in the Global Poker League draft by the Montreal Nationals.

She has been a rising star on the poker circuit for several years, making her a perfect choice for women poker players who are looking for a coach to inspire them with real life experiences.

MAKING POKER INCLUSIVE

Liu is also taking an active role in changing how we value women in poker (and in society in general).

Liu’s tweets about the importance of connecting with women in terms other than the clothes they wear also struck me as relevant, as it ties back in to the Women in Poker topic that was discussed at the American Poker Conference.

It was stated at the beginning of the discussion that women only make up 4% of all live tournaments and only 9-11% of the online community. The panel then discussed how to make poker more inclusive for women and how to remove the potential barriers that stop more women from playing poker.

At the time of watching, it struck me that the industry still has a long way to go to tackle gender equality if we are still addressing women in terms of what they wear.

Sarah Herring from PokerNews, who moderated the event, commented in turn about each of the panelists clothes. Herring gave a “shout out” to Allison Hollander for wearing a business suit, Liv Boeree’s “snake pants” got a mention and Cate Hall’s hair colour of course, did not go unnoticed.

Would those same comments have been made to a male panel?

For the record, I am all for women supporting and complimenting each other, both on a professional and personal level. And I too love the business suit, snake pants and Cate’s hair, but fundamentally these comments seemed out of place in this context and counterproductive to the discussion.

How can poker stop being categorized as misogynistic when this is how we prefix our gender diversity debate?

Women supporting other women and learning new ways of communicating with each other is a good place to start, and it is great to see Xuan Liu share this message to her 15K + twitter followers.

March 15, 2016
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