How to Win at Sports Betting

sports betting

Sports betting has been a fun activity for many people since the legalization of gambling in the United States in May 2018. However, before you start making your first wager, it is important to know some basic rules and understand how professional bettors make their picks.

1. Don’t Bet on Your Favorite Team

One of the most common mistakes that new bettors make is placing a bet on their favorite team. Whether it’s because of a team’s jersey colors, horoscopes or just an underlying feeling, these bets aren’t as profitable as you might think.

2. Don’t Place Too Many Parlays

While parlays are an excellent way to increase your chances of winning, they can also be a risky strategy. If you bet too much on a single match, you could lose your entire bankroll.

3. Don’t Put All Your Money on a Single Game

Betting on a single game is the easiest way to get started, but it’s not the best strategy for long-term success. Instead, focus on multiple games and try to win a larger amount.

4. Always check the point spread

The point spread is a popular way to bet on sports. It is the margin of points that a favored team must beat the other team to “cover.” This bet usually comes at odds of 11 to 10 and can be found at most online sportsbooks.

5. Expected Value

Expected value is a simple but powerful tool that sports bettors use to identify valuable bets. It’s a mathematical formula that weighs the cost of each bet based on its probability of winning, and the probability of losing.

It’s not easy to master, but it’s essential for anyone who wants to profit from sports betting. Sharp bettors understand this formula and have a unique edge over the average player.

6. Develop a Sense of Value

The ability to spot value bets is a crucial skill for any sports bettor. It can take some time and effort to develop, but it’s worth it in the long run.

7. Focus on Leagues You Know Well

It is tempting to spread your bets out across all kinds of sports, but it’s more effective to specialise in a few different leagues and tournaments until you have built up a good sense of value in that particular sport or league.

8. Look for Value Bets at the Book

Using sportsbook odds to bet on individual teams or specific outcomes is another powerful sports betting strategy. Oddsmakers are constantly updating their odds, and they are often more likely to make changes that benefit the bettor than the book.

9. Shop for the Right Lines

There are hundreds of props on every game, which makes it difficult for sportsbooks to properly price them. If you have access to several online sportsbooks, it’s a good idea to shop around for the best lines.

10. The Right Team Can Help You Win

Choosing the right team can give you a big advantage over the average player. Taking into account the team’s history, home and away record, player injuries, defensive stats and more can help you make better decisions.