Most people just bet on their favorite teams without even considering strategy options. However there are some great strategies available which will quickly make your sports betting more effective. Just some simple money management, line shopping or research can easily make the difference between being winner and loser over the long term. This article outlines some key sports betting strategies and how to quickly use them to your advantage.
If you don’t use some kind of bankroll management and bet in amounts that vary depending upon how you assess a wager, then your gambling bankroll will always be at risk. Many sports bettors reload when they lose, and then increase their stakes when they win. This often means their winnings disappear quicker than they should and they have to reload again. This is a vicious circle that is easily avoidable.
Many good sports bettors use a unit system for bankroll management. They will assign a certain number of units to a bet depending upon their confidence in the bet. In many cases this will be between one and five units (although this is down to the individual) and each unit will represent a percentage of the bankroll – in many cases 1%. If the bettor has extreme confidence in a wager, then he will place 5% of his bankroll on the event, less confident wagers seeing stakes of between 1% and 4% of the bankroll.
By sticking to this system, the bankroll is never actually at risk – by betting only a small percentage of the bankroll each time it should in theory be impossible to go bust. A punter with an edge will have downswings and upswings but in the long run will see the bankroll grow slowly but surely.
Specializing and Homework
To win at betting over the long run you have to be better at assessing lines than the bookmaker. Unfortunately this is not easy, as a good Sportsbook will employ many people and their full time job is to better than you at assigning lines and probabilities of certain sporting outcomes.
However, all is not lost when you consider how a firm might be set up. A gambling site will spend most of its resources on the parts of the site that make the most money. An individual Sportsbook might concentrate their efforts on the bigger sports (NFL as an example) by employing a large team to compile the odds. For some of the smaller sports, they might use just one person to cover the markets, or even have that person cover more than one sport. This is where an individual can gain an edge – if you specialize in a sport where you know more than the book, you are onto a winner.
The more time you can spend studying a sport, the more chance you have of making it pay. On many occasions, “homework” in sports betting is just watching as much of a sport as you can, so it’s not that much of a hardship, and the more you can understand a sport, and can eventually “predict” a sport, the better you’ll become.
Betting Line and Price Shopping
A good sports bettor will not belong to just one site, and will shop around continuously for the best lines and prices. Sportsbooks will have differing lines at times, and the sports bettor who is always grabbing that extra point or half point will over the long run be at a huge advantage over the average punter that sticks to just the one site and one set of lines.
There are many bonuses at Sportsbooks when you open an account, which is all the more reason to open multiple accounts. Not only will you be gaining the best prices and lines, but you’ll be sweeping up the free money offered to you.
You may put all of the above strategies in place and be doing well – but then undo all of this in just one night after too many glasses of alcohol, or after a particularly unlucky loss on the big game. Staying disciplined is a must. Bad runs are going to happen, and there will be times when you feel that you are just unlucky, but a good run is always just around the corner – so sticking to the plan will eventually pay dividends. Blowing your bankroll in one bad night is a gambling disaster – so if frustration is taking over, or you feel that just one bet after a few beers is ok, walk away and come back the next day.