If you’re a big fan of sports and would like to make some money off your passion, you might want to consider sports betting. Especially as it becomes legal in more and more states. One of the best things about sports betting is that unlike most other forms of betting, it makes strong use of your knowledge of your sport of choice and the players playing it. Whether you win or not is obviously still completely out of your control, but with the right knowledge, you can have the odds very much in your favor.
The tricky thing about sports betting, though, is that unlike games like blackjack or poker, where once you know how to play properly, you’re pretty much set, what you need to know about sports betting can change drastically not just from sport to sport but from match to match.
There are some general tips, though, to keep in mind to make you into a successful sports better, no matter what your game is.
Research, Research, Research
This may seem super obvious, but it’s easy to get cocky about your own knowledge of a sport so it’s always a good idea to see if your own thoughts line up with those of others’. Betting for or against your favorite team can be especially lethal in terms of bias, both recognized and unrecognized, so before placing a single bet you may want to look through as many bookie websites as you can to see what the odds-on favorites really are.
Similarly, when you’re starting out, you want to make sure you fully understand how sports betting works for that particular sport and don’t be afraid to refresh your memory even after having been playing the game for a while.
Understand the Odds, Trust the Odds, and Know When to Ignore the Odds
Tied in with the importance of knowing the game, it’s crucial to carefully study however many odds you can find on any given game. Don’t just look at one bookie, look at loads of them. These sites generally really do know precisely what they’re talking about and you should always consult them before every bet is made.
On the other hand, if you really think you know better than the bookies on a particular occasion, though, and you honestly think that a certain team or player is really going to shatter the odds, well, this is where you want to bet. It doesn’t even have to be too much but if your team beats the odds, that’s where the big payouts come in.
Be as Selective as Possible
Because sports betting has become so widespread and so varied, it can be very easy to be spoiled for choice. You might want to try to bet your hand on every second match on every third sport, but this would be a huge mistake. What you really want to do is stick to the sports that you know like the back of your hand. This could be one sport or five but you don’t want to mess around with a sport you’re not an expert in – even if you put in all the research you can.
And certainly, even within your favorite sports, refrain from betting on every match. Keep checking bookmaker sites to see which games will either present something close to a sure thing or promises a huge payout if the underdog – that you believe in – will win.
Learn Basic Betting Strategies
Once you know the sport and once you understand both the odds and what they mean, the next big thing you should be concentrating on are established betting strategies. These will teach you not what to bet on, but how to bet to maximize your chances of making back a serious return on investment.
They’re certainly not fool proof and they’re not as essential as knowing the sport and the odds but once you have those under wraps, it’s a good idea to start studying, as in depth as possible, well known stratagems like:
- Arbitrage betting
- Backing heavy favorites
- Betting off market prices
- Betting based on winning streaks
When it comes to any sort of gambling or betting, this is the most important thing to always keep in mind. Be responsible. Don’t play beyond your means. Create a budget and stick to it. Don’t use credit to bet – EVER. Make sure that you’re not letting betting on sports games take over your life, even if you can afford it. If you have a predilection towards addiction it’s best not to even start and if you don’t but find yourself in over your head, keep a note of organizations that help curb gambling addiction.
Keep these things in mind and you will be well on your way.