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Understanding Bankroll Management and the Math behind the Bookies

Understanding Bankroll Management and the Math behind the Bookies

There are a few key things that you’ll need to know in order to make a profit betting on sports, and as long as you can stay disciplined, you will have a chance profit on your investment. Make no mistake about it, betting on sports is an investment just like any other, so let’s take a closer look at how to read the market.

Understanding the Math Behind Sports Betting

In order to make a profit by betting on sports, you need to understand the math behind sports betting. We’re going to assume, since you are thinking about taking sports betting seriously enough to try and earn a profit, you understand that the average online sportsbook will have a line of -110. That is the price of your wager, which is a risk of 10 cents for every dollar you want to profit. For the sake of this article, it’s easiest to think of this in terms of $100. Basically, the price of your wagers (-110) is 110 to win 100. If you understand that, then you know it costs $11 to win $10 and $1.10 to win $1.

Once you understand the price of your wagers, you can then calculate the necessary winning percentage in order to break even. This is the magic number that all professionals pay attention to: 52.4%. If you are paying 10 cents for every dollar you want to win, you will need to hit 52.4% in order to break even. In other words, anything over that is profit. At this point, you’ve probably realized that you’ll need to keep track of all of your wagers and the price you paid. This is something that can’t be ignored if you’re serious about making a profit.

Study Your Bets to Make Better Decisions

Now that you know why tracking your bets is important from a money-making standpoint, in order to make profits from betting on sports, you’ll need to study the historical data. When you bet on a game, no matter how much of the sport you watch, you will still need to study historical data in order to find patterns that you might be able to take advantage of and others you’ll want to avoid.

The same applies to your historical bets. If you go back and look at your losing plays, there might be a pattern that you aren’t aware of in real time that the historical data can help you identify. The same goes for your winners as there may be a specific type of bet that you’re hitting more than others. The point is, historical data is fundamental in terms of improving you as a bettor.

One other thing about studying your bets is you should also be studying which sportsbooks offer the best lines for your bets and the most attractive bonuses. Paying attention to that will help you pick the right sites to get you started.

Bankroll Management Is Your Best Friend

If you don’t know how to manage your bankroll, you’ll never make a profit betting on sports. Once you decide how much you want to spend for the season/year, stick to that amount. If you lose your bankroll before the season/year is done, you’ve either got some serious homework to do so you can start picking winners or, you simply mismanaged your bankroll.

Bankroll mismanagement is one of the biggest obstacles in terms of novice bettors making money. If you want to make money like a professional, you’ll need to act like one and that means unit betting. Unit betting simply means betting the same amount per unit. By doing this, you will give yourself more of a chance to win money. If unit betting sounds boring, don’t to worry, you can bet multiple units.

Professional bettors bet between 1-5 units per wager. This way, they never have too much of their bankroll on one bet. If you like something, you bet a single unit. If you love it, then you can bet five but that should be a max bet. One unit should be equal to 1% of your bankroll. This also makes it easier for you to track how much profit you’ve made. If you’re +12 units on the season and one unit equals $500, then you’re up $6000. If you’re -7 units with the same $500 per unit value, you’re down $3500.

Keep It Simple and Stick to What You Know

One of the biggest mistakes people make when trying to make a profit from betting on sports is betting on too many different leagues and sports. We’re not saying that it isn’t possible to know everything about sports, but there will naturally be certain leagues that you know better than others. Figure that out and try focusing on that sport or league exclusively to see if you can make a profit.

The other mistake you should avoid is increasing your unit size because you are up. When you change the size of your units midseason, you risk running out of money much faster than you would have normally simply because you were greedy. Be patient and trust in the fact that your fundamentals got you to the point where you achieved your goal of making profit from betting on sports. Keep it simple, stick to the fundamentals and you will keep making money.

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by Dirk DeBie // Contributor to Businessing Magazine.

Opinions expressed by contributors are their own.