While a couple of decades ago, you could count female poker players on two hands, nowadays women have become equal contenders for the big prizes at reputable poker tournaments. Women have started taking interest in poker several years ago and frankly, their participation will surely increase the social acceptance of the game.
Women like Jennifer Tilly, Cyndy Violette or Barbara Enright are not only winning one important championships after another, but they are also changing the way poker is played at the same time. Perhaps this is why the male poker players have started to take the great ladies in poker more seriously.
The female’s biological role and poker
It is said that women have a greater intuition and are better at reading nonverbal language than men. Before you dismiss the aforementioned statement as urban folklore, take note that over three decades of research on the topic indicates the female superiority at reading non-verbal cues. And, the ability to detect and interpret nonverbal language doesn’t apply only to poker; it’s actually universal across cultures.
The women’s ability to identify and decode nonverbal language has developed due to one of the most important biological roles, namely bringing up babies. For at least one year, the mother needs to dedicate herself entirely to the newborn who communicates all his/her needs nonverbally. While a mother can easily figure out the reason why her baby is crying – he’s hungry, he needs a diaper change, he’s scared, so on and so forth – most fathers are clueless and don’t know what to do in these situations.
Oh, you’re talking about the female intuition…
Even though is widely used, the concept of female intuition is often misunderstood. The female intuition doesn’t imply that women posses the supernatural power of reading your thoughts. Moreover, it doesn’t give women the ability to anticipate your next move at the unconscious level and act accordingly. In reality, the so-called female intuition refers to the ability to read people better. Using this capacity at the poker table, when the ability to read your opponent is critical for your next move, women gain an edge over the male players.
Women don’t engage in testosterone-driven behaviors
In addition to their ability to spot subtle changes in behavior, women don’t exhibit and are not aroused by verbal taunting, aggressive eyeballing and other testosterone-driven behaviors. Partially, this is one of the explanations to why you see more male criminals than female criminals.
Why does it matter you ask? Well, for starters all professional poker players know just how damaging the aggressive play can be at a table with high stakes. Allowing your negative emotions to get the best of you means you are agreeing to an emotional hijacking. The rollercoaster of negative emotions has the ability to throw the best player off tilt, as many of you witness on televised tournaments more than once.
Not countering the aggressive behaviors and ignoring taunts means you are able to remain focused and you save all your energy to play poker. In other words, refraining from engaging in aggressive behaviors is what makes you a better player and a more successful competitor.