Sports Betting 101

The act of placing a wager on an outcome of a game/competition. Individuals involved in betting risk losing a portion of their bankroll and may have a chance to win something as well depending on the result. Betting requires more research and calculation than gambling which relies solely on luck.

Value bets are a way to make a profit on a wager by using the mathematical concept of expected value (EV). This process calculates the true probability of an event happening and compares it to the odds set by the bookmaker. Positive EV bets have a higher chance of winning than the odds suggest, while negative EV bets have a lower chance of winning than the odds suggest.

Don’t place bets based on emotion. This classic rookie mistake can lead to devastating losses. It is better to follow a formula for making smart money bets, such as only betting on teams that are backed by good odds. Never bet on a team simply because you like it; this is often a case of rosy-tinted glasses.

Cognitive biases are common in sports betting, and it is important to recognize them and avoid them. Examples include Gambler’s Fallacy, Optimism Bias, and Ratio Bias. It is also essential to understand how to transform the data you glean into odds tissue, and to be aware of the factors that can influence those odds. For example, chauvinistic punters might refuse to back a female jockey despite detailed research proving she is as good as male jockeys.