How to Win at Sports Betting
Placing wagers on the outcome of a sporting event has a long tradition in many different cultures. For most people, this is an activity enjoyed occasionally, one that adds to the excitement of the games, and even produces a profit from time to time. There are however professional gamblers as well, who manage to make a source of additional income, or even a source of livelihood out of their hobby. Of course amateur bettors also aim to have a similar success, but the truth is that most of them lose on a regular basis. The reason for this is the fact that they do not dedicate enough time to study and learn all the ropes of online sports betting. There is no easy or quick way to success, but any beginner can turn into a profitable bettor provided that he or she is serious about it and willing to acquire the knowledge and the right attitude to become a winner.
One of the most important qualities of a successful bettor is the fact that he has good bankroll management skills. Knowing how to manage your money is vital because it helps you last through the fluctuations that come with gambling, and keeps you in the game all the time. It also gives you an idea about how much to wager on an event without taking too much risk. The first step you should take is to establish a bankroll that you only use for betting on sports, as this will allow you to know permanently how much money you have at your disposal and help you keep things under control.
You would think that beginning bettors are shy and wager a small amount, but most of them actually bet too much on single events, and this causes huge fluctuations in their bankroll. Most experts suggest only risking about 2 to 5% of your total bankroll on a single bet. This is a fixed amount that applies to every bet, and that you should not change until you actually show a profit. You will find that as you get better and win more, your bet size will increase automatically, because you will have a bigger roll at your disposal. Keeping this proportion in mind and applying this rule is one of the basic steps to success.
Make sure that the sports you bet on are the ones you know well. For example, when placing a football bet you need to pay attention to the NFL odds.
Online, you have the opportunity to bet on almost any sport and event in the world, but it is less likely you will be successful if you choose something that you are not familiar with, or can’t keep track of. Focus on two or three sports that you like and know most about, because this will help you evaluate the situation easier. You may also get to know more about it than the bookies: you will have more time then they do, since they have to keep up with every sport all the time. If you try to do too much and watch a great number of different sports, you may miss those essential elements that distinguish the winner from the looser.
Before you actually get involved in betting and risk your hard-earned money, spend some time learning about the math behind it. You don’t have to be exceptionally smart to be successful, but you need to be well informed. Knowing about the odds and the expected value of a bet will help you make sensible decisions and will allow you to rely on reason and calculations rather than hunches. The bookmakers you are up against certainly know about this aspect, so you will have to be prepared as well if you want to beat them. There is a wealth of information available both on the internet and in different books and much of it is aimed at beginners, presented in a form they will be able to grasp easily, so all you have to do is look around and then apply what you have learned.
Choosing the best place to bet at is one of the factors that influence winning. There is often a difference between the lines offered by the various sportsbooks, and you should be able to exploit these discrepancies. Take your time to do a bit of research and shop around for the best line, as a couple of points can make the difference between a win and a loss.
If you have looked into sports betting strategies before, you have probably heard or read about people advertising systems that promise huge winnings. They say you don’t need to know anything about sports betting, and you can become a winner within a short period of time. These offers sound very tempting, but you should be aware of the fact that they are usually scams destined to trick naive people. If the sellers claim their system can pick a very large percentage of winners, be vary, as it is probably a scam. Most professional gamblers are happy if they win about 60% of their bets, so a system claiming to pick the winner more than 90% of the time is very unlikely to be real.
Professional bettors keep detailed records of every wager they place, writing down all the information about it. Having such a record is a helpful tool for any gambler. It doesn’t matter if you do it on the computer or on a piece of paper; the point is that you make it accurate and honest. This will give you an idea about how good your picks really are, and help you to see whether you are evolving and making progress. If there is a weak point that may cause you trouble, you will be able to find it and work out a solution to it.
When beginners think of a successful bettor, they often imagine someone who makes a pile of money by taking a big chance and being lucky. Experienced bettors know that the big wins are not the point. The point is to make a profit, however small, over a long period of time. Anyone can get lucky a few times, but they probably won’t be able to ride out a series of losses if they don’t think on the long term. Discipline and a rational attitude are more likely to help you in the world of sports wagering than luck, so you should aim to develop this quality, and learn constantly about the way betting works.