Over the past few months, we’ve posted quite a few articles on sports betting. We posted three guides to cover the basics on handicapping baseball, basketball and football, but these didn’t nearly cover everything a beginner would need to know. We’ve also posted articles that cover basic terms, as well as other assorted betting tips.
But we realized that, to some bettors, the number of articles on the basics might present a problem. It’s a lot of information to keep track of without having it all in one place. In addition, we also like to post articles offering pro tips, whether about certain sports or simply about how sportsbooks are run. When posting these types of articles, we don’t want to risk alienating our more experienced clients by having to stop and rehash some of the basics that have already been covered elsewhere.
So we’ve decided to cover all of the basics in one fell swoop, with a complete guide to betting on sports. This will combine some information that has been covered previously, such as tips about finding a decent sportsbook or about how to manage your money efficiently, while also providing some new information that we’ve wanted to cover for a while. This is going to be a pretty long guide, but we suggest that novice bettors make sure to bookmark it. This information will almost definitely prove useful to you as you get your start.
Of course, with our handicapping consulting services, it isn’t that hard to make a profit through sports betting. But you will still want to know the following basics if you don’t want to get lost in a sea of numbers and tricky decisions. With that said, let’s dig in.
Is Sports Betting Right For You?
If you’re looking at this type of guide for the first time, you might still be on the fence about sports betting. You might feel lured in by the promise of winning, while your more practical side is screaming at you that the threat of losing is simply too great to risk it. And that’s why you’re going to have to do some soul-searching before you even bother with the rest of this guide.
Now, there are some circumstances under which we absolutely would not suggest for you to engage in the practice of sports betting. For instance, if you don’t have much money and are thinking that sports betting will act as some sort of “get rich quick” scheme, then you might want to turn the other way. You can make a lot of money on sports betting, but no one wins every time. You also wind up with a lot of your money stuck in venture if you’re betting through online sportsbooks, so even those who get rick may not always do so quickly.
More importantly, however, is whether or not you are the type of person who is likely to develop a gambling addiction. While it is often our opinion that sports betting is different from other types of gambling, those with particularly addictive personalities may still be likely to spend too much and hurt their financial lives in the process. If you have a family (or even if you’d like to), then this risk is especially worrisome. So whether or not you have a decent bankroll, stop and think about whether or not you are the type of person who is able to bet responsibly.
Now, let’s say that you have a fair bit of money and you are not too worried about becoming an addict. You might think that you’re in the clear, but if so then you’re forgetting that sports betting is not legal in all states. And in some places where it is legal, there are certain rules regarding what you can and cannot place bets on. Now, since many sportsbooks are online and not situated in one physical location, these rules might be bendable for some.
But you ultimately have to figure out whether or not betting is even remotely legal for you, and then decide whether or not you are comfortable with the idea from an ethical standpoint. After all, even if it’s legal and you are not at risk of addiction or excessive financial loss, some of your friends and family might not approve. It’s up to you whether or not you’re the type of person who can feel comfortable without their endorsement of your activities.
Why Do You Want to Bet on Sports?
Once you’ve taken the time to decide whether or not sports betting is something to which you’d like to dedicate your time, you still have to do some thinking about why you have decided to take up the hobby of sports betting. There are some professional sports bettors out there, people who make a great deal of their income from this hobby alone. Are you hoping to be one of them? Or are you just in it for the excitement?
The answer to this question will likely determine how you go about betting in the first place. If you just want a bit of extra money and don’t care about the experience, then you might just sign up for our service, follow our picks, and not give it another thought. Heck, you might not even watch the games you’ve wagered on, and just wait to look up the scores and see if you made any money. You have the option of putting forth very little effort. Of course, this isn’t the most exciting way to go about it by any means whatsoever.
If you’re in it because you want to engage yourself in a fun and exciting new hobby, then you’re going to bet much differently. You might enjoy doing research on each team, to the extent that you bet on some games without looking to see which picks we’ve offered. You might occasionally bet more of your bankroll then we’ve suggested (if you have the money to do so, of course). And if you choose to watch the games, you’re likely to be holding your breath every second, utterly enthralled by every movement of the players as they bring you either nearer to or further from victory.
There are pros and cons to each of the types of bettors we’ve described above. Those who are in it for the excitement will sometimes lose more than they can afford, whereas those who do not engage themselves in the process will make a bit of money but will not necessarily enjoy it. If you can, it doesn’t hurt to aim somewhere in the middle. You want to be engaged, but don’t allow yourself to mismanage your bankroll. Do your research (as we will outline below), and if you’re paying for our services then by all means use them. Don’t let a fun hobby go to waste because you were either too excited to get involved or too impartial to really benefit from the joy of winning.