AJ Rudolph in-depth interview: Teaching women to play poker!

We spoke with AJ Rudolph, Director of Education for the women’s group Poker Power and Vice President of the Women’s Poker Association

Find out her thoughts on what it’s like to teach women how to play poker!

*Interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

Going from Virtual Classes to Live Poker Tables

Amanda: Poker Power’s primary mission is to teach women how to play poker. What surprised you most about teaching these classes?

AJ: Oh, that’s a great question. Honestly, I think the biggest thing that has surprised me is going back to what it’s like playing when you first started.

Think about all those things that were big hurdles for you. Now, granted, when I started playing, I started playing in person. So that was never a hurdle for me.

But the biggest surprise for me is that because most of our teaching has been done virtually and online, the biggest hurdle for women to get over is to play poker live.

Not that they ever have to. But just getting over that hump has proven to be much more difficult than we expected.

Amanda: How so?

AJ: Things you have to do when you’re playing live that are very different – even just calculating the pot, right? The app is going to tell you how much is in the pot. 

But if you look at the pot when you’re playing live, you’re like, “Oh, wait! Okay… So, there were how many people again? Let me add that up.”

Once we get women to play in person, it’s such a rewarding experience for them. You hear them say it was awesome and so much fun, including little details like listening to the sound of the chips in the room.