As sports betting enters the mainstream with legalization in many states, millions of fans are looking for tips on how to place a smart bet. It’s no secret that sportsbooks tilt the odds in their favor, but savvy bettors can use some of these strategies to help offset the rake.
Betting with your heart is not a good idea
One of the worst things you can do when placing a bet on a sporting event is to let your emotions get the best of you. You’ll end up betting on teams and players that you like just because they are your favorite, rather than based on sound research and statistical analysis. This type of emotional betting will often lead to wayward bets and big losses.
A more rational approach to sports betting is to make sure you have a solid bankroll and to stick to it. This will ensure that you can handle a bad day (or even a bad month) when you’re placing your bets. A good rule of thumb is to risk no more than 1% or 5% of your total bankroll on each individual play. It’s also a good idea to keep track of your bets using a standard spreadsheet, so you can monitor your progress over time.
Another key tip is to avoid chasing after bets that you’ve won with more bets in an attempt to recoup your losses. This is referred to as going on “tilt” and it’s something that many bettors struggle with. It’s also important to bet sober and avoid drinking or taking drugs before you place a bet. This will give you a clear mind and will make it easier to spot winning bets.
Making a living from sports betting isn’t easy
It’s no secret that professional sports handicappers are only successful about half the time. Trying to make a living off of sports betting is a long-term endeavor that requires a lot of work and patience. It’s also important to remember that you will have losing runs, so it’s crucial to set your bankroll up to be able to handle them.
One way to do this is by setting your bankroll up with multiple betting systems and focusing on those that have the most potential for profit. A great strategy is value betting, which involves placing bets on sports events that have a larger chance of winning than implied by the odds. This can be a very profitable strategy over the long term if done correctly.
Another great strategy is to focus on player and team props. These are wagers that aren’t based on the outcome of a game, but on specific statistical categories such as goals, wins, losses, saves, birdies, aces, etc. The over/under total is a popular type of sports prop and it’s a bet on whether a particular category will go over or under a predetermined number. For example, if you’re betting on Max Scherzer’s strikeout total against the Reds, the over/under will be set at 7.5.