Anyone who wants to bet on sports will be forced to make some difficult decisions. Here鈥檚 a couple that need to be made before you can even get started.
These decisions will be easy to make for those who are sports fans first and bettors second. They usually choose to simply wager on all of the sports that they already follow and like to watch. This approach is entirely logical really, as those are the sports that they know and understand best. They鈥檙e more likely to enjoy betting on those sports, and their knowledge of those sports will give them a better of chance of winning money.
For a lot of people, however, these decisions are NOT easy. Some people follow a lot of sports, and are not sure if they want to bet on them all. Others only follow a single sport, and aren鈥檛 sure if they want to limit themselves to just that one sport. Then there are those who want to try to sports betting but don鈥檛 really follow any sports closely.
All of these people need to put some real thought into which sports to bet on and how many. Even if the decision seems easy, it鈥檚 going to be something they鈥檒l really have to think through. As logical as betting on all the sports they already follow might seem, this isn鈥檛 necessarily the right approach.
So what IS the right approach then? What are the best sports for betting? And how many sports should you bet on? Unfortunately, there鈥檚 no one right answer to these questions.
You see, although this article is named 鈥淭he Best Sports for Betting,鈥?there鈥檚 really no such thing. There are definitely sports that WE think are better, but not everyone is going to have the same opinions. The best sport for one person to bet on might be a terrible sport for someone else. It depends on several different factors. A similar principle applies to whether it鈥檚 best to wager on one sport, a couple of sports, or a variety of sports. There鈥檚 no 鈥渙ptimal鈥?number of sports here. Again, there are a lot of factors that come into play.
What matters most is finding what鈥檚 best for YOU. And we can鈥檛 tell you that without knowing your own situation and personal preferences. We can, however, give you the tools you need to discover that on your own. That鈥檚 the purpose of this article.
We start by looking at the most popular sports to bet on. We admit that there are good reasons as to why they are so popular, while there are also good reasons as to why they鈥檙e not necessary the best options. We cover both in this article.
Then we look at the advantages and disadvantages of betting on a single sport as opposed to betting on many. We finish up with some advice for making your decisions about which sports to bet on and how many.
We repeatedly refer to 鈥渧alue鈥?throughout this article. If you鈥檙e not familiar with this term in the context of sports betting, we suggest taking a look at this article which thoroughly covers it.
The answer to this question actually depends to some extent on what part of the world we鈥檙e talking about. There are certain sports that are popular in some regions, but not so popular in others. However, there are a few sports that are popular with bettors all around the world. In terms of the total number of people who bet on them, the following sports definitely rank the highest.
Other popular sports for betting that are NOT on this list include baseball, darts, rugby and horse racing. We didn鈥檛 include baseball because that doesn鈥檛 get a lot of betting attention outside of the United States. Darts doesn鈥檛 get much attention outside of the United Kingdom, and rugby is only popular in a few countries. Horse racing DOES get worldwide attention, but horse racing betting is typically categorized as its own unique form of gambling.
We doubt that any of the sports on this list came as a surprise to you. After all, these are the sports that regularly attract large viewing audiences. It stands to reason that the most watched sports in the world are also the ones that people wager on the most.
Obvious logic aside, there are four other good reasons why these sports are so popular among bettors.
Please note that each of these reasons can be applied to virtually any mainstream sport, not just the eight we listed. Let鈥檚 explore each one of them in more detail.
Mainstream sports typically offer many opportunities to bet. There are games and events taking place on a regular basis, and in some cases the whole year round. This appeals to a lot of people, because many of them enjoy placing lots of wagers. They love having plenty of opportunities to get their money down.
Most bettors place lots of wagers because they think it will improve their chances of making money. We can see the logic in thinking this way, but the opposite is actually true. It鈥檚 the QUALITY of our wagers that improves our chances of making money, not the quantity of them. And the more wagers we place, the less likely we are to place good wagers.
No matter how much we know about a particular sport, we鈥檙e extremely unlikely to make consistently good selections if we try to predict the outcome of every single game or event. But if we鈥檙e selective, and carefully pick the best opportunities, our chances of making good selections increases dramatically.
The more opportunities we have to bet on a sport, the more selective we can be. Take a sport like tennis for example. Even a bona fide tennis expert wouldn鈥檛 be able to correctly predict the outcome of each match in the first round of a grand slam tournament. But he wouldn鈥檛 need to. Since there are so many matches, he could focus on finding a few matches that offered genuine value. As there are tennis tournaments taking place virtually every week of the year, he鈥檇 ALWAYS have plenty of matches to choose from.
So having a lot of opportunities to place wagers IS a very real advantage of betting on popular and mainstream sports. It鈥檚 just not for the reason that most people think.
Anyone who wants to watch any of the mainstream sports we listed can easily do so, as they are widely broadcasted on the television or internet. Watching sports becomes even more exciting when you have some money at stake, which is why so many people choose to wager on the sports they are already watching.
The widespread coverage of mainstream sports also gives us a distinct advantage in terms of making good decisions. Actually watching games and events provides us with additional insight that we just can鈥檛 get in any other way. Team sports are the best illustration of this.
Consider a sport such as football for example. We can read game reports and study various statistics, and they can definitely tell us something about the strengths and weaknesses of the various teams and players. But watching the games tells us far more and helps us to form solid opinions about how these teams and players are performing. Those opinions are invaluable when it comes it to making predictions about future games.
For most mainstream sports, there鈥檚 a wealth of information readily available. Some sports have TV channels dedicated entirely to broadcasting all the latest news, and most newspapers cover the popular sports extensively too. And then there鈥檚 the internet. The internet is full of useful sports resources where we can find out pretty much anything we could possibly want to know about any of the major sports.
Latest results, injury news, game reports, expert opinions, various stats, and much more are all available online. With so much information to work with, it鈥檚 easy to see why so many people prefer to wager on mainstream sports.
The more information we have at our disposal, the better our chances are of making good decisions. We have to know how to interpret it all if we want to be truly successful, but there鈥檚 no doubt that simply having more information on hand helps.
It鈥檚 no surprise that the sports that receive the most attention from bettors also receive the most attention from the bookmakers. They have to give their customers what they want in order to keep them happy. And what the customers want is a good variety of betting options. This is why the bookmakers typically offer such an incredible range of different options on mainstream sports.
This is a major advantage. More options equal more opportunities to get some money down. As we explained earlier, this also makes it easier for us to be selective and pick the BEST opportunities.
All things considered, it鈥檚 clear why so many people choose to bet on the mainstream sports. There are notable advantages. However, there are two major disadvantages to betting on these sports too.
We mentioned earlier how the popular sports get more attention from the bookmakers. While this can be a good thing, it has its downsides too. Because the bookmakers take so much action on these sports, they dedicate a LOT of resources to making sure that they don鈥檛 give away any value easily. They hire genuine experts who are exceptionally skilled at pricing up the betting markets. They make it very difficult for us to find any value in the odds and lines they have to offer, which means it鈥檚 difficult to make any money in the long run.
When there IS some value in their odds and lines, there are so many other people betting on these sports that it soon disappears. A good price will see lots of money coming in very quickly, and when that happens the bookmakers adjust their odds and lines accordingly. So unless we鈥檙e also very quick, we can easily miss out on the best opportunities.
Now, we鈥檙e not trying to say it鈥檚 impossible to win money from the popular sports. It definitely is; it鈥檚 just one heck of a challenge. There鈥檚 a strong argument that betting on other sports is substantially easier.
It wasn鈥檛 that long ago that the popular and mainstream sports were all we could bet on. Finding a bookmaker willing to take wagers on the 鈥渕inor鈥?sports was nearly impossible. This is no longer the case though, as these days we can bet on virtually any sport that鈥檚 played professionally: even the most obscure ones. Although these don鈥檛 offer the same advantages that we鈥檝e outlined above, one big advantage they have is that the bookmakers don鈥檛 give them the same level of attention.
In theory, this makes it easier to make money on these sports. Note that we said easier, not easy. It鈥檚 still a challenge to beat the bookmakers even when betting on the obscure sports. But it鈥檚 very possible to know more than the bookmakers do about these sports, and that can give us a real edge.
So, one of the first things you need to consider when deciding which sports to bet on is whether you want to bet on the mainstream sports or the minor ones. There are pros and cons either way, as we鈥檝e just explained. You also need to consider a few other things too, and we鈥檒l get to those later. Before that, let鈥檚 look at how betting on one sport compares to betting on many.
To decide how many sports you should bet on, you should be aware of the advantages and disadvantages of betting on one sport compared to betting on many. We鈥檒l start with the three main advantages.
The first advantage here is a significant one. If you devote all your time to one single sport, it鈥檚 entirely possible that you can become a genuine expert. This will greatly improve your chances of beating the bookmakers. Remember, they have experts working for them. You really need to match the knowledge of their experts to be able to win money consistently. If you can actually learn MORE than them, then you鈥檒l be in a good position to beat them.
Focusing on a single sport also allows you more time to concentrate on finding value in the markets. You can analyze every opportunity in great detail, giving you a better chance of identifying where the very best value lies. This is much harder to do when betting on several sports, as you have many more opportunities to look at. It鈥檚 simply not possible to analyze them all in the same level of detail.
The third advantage is perhaps not as significant as the previous two, but it鈥檚 an advantage nonetheless. When betting on several sports, you ideally need a pretty sizable budget. This is simply because you鈥檙e likely to be placing more wagers. You can get away with a much smaller budget when betting on just one sport though. Plus, you can be more aggressive with that budget, as the quality of your wagers will typically be higher. This can potentially increase the rate at which you win money.
There are two notable disadvantages to focusing on one sport.
The first disadvantage is somewhat obvious. When you鈥檙e betting on just one sport, there aren鈥檛 as many opportunities to place wagers as when betting on several. Although you鈥檒l have more time to find the good opportunities, there鈥檒l be fewer good opportunities to find. This could potentially harm your chances of identifying value.
The second disadvantage only applies to a few sports, so it might not be relevant to you. It鈥檚 worth bearing in mind if you鈥檙e planning to bet on sports such as football or basketball though. The football season is particularly short, running from October through February.
Note that neither of these disadvantages are significant enough that you should definitely NOT focus on just one sport. They鈥檙e definitely worth bearing in mind though.
We should also point out that your choices are not limited to betting on one sport or betting on many. There鈥檚 a middle ground too, such as betting on two or three. This is actually a good option for a lot of people, but don鈥檛 decide just yet. We have more advice to offer for deciding how many sports to bet on, and which ones.
We鈥檝e given you plenty to consider so far, and now we鈥檙e going to help you to make your decisions. At this stage you should ask yourself a very simple question.
There are two main reasons why people choose to bet on sports. A lot of people are what are known as recreational bettors, and they bet primarily for fun. They obviously want to win money if they can (who doesn鈥檛?), but that isn鈥檛 what really motivates them. They don鈥檛 put any real effort into making good betting decisions, and they don鈥檛 take things very seriously. Betting is basically just a form of entertainment for them, and they enjoy it because it makes watching their favorite sports that much more exciting. They also enjoy the challenge of putting their sports knowledge to the test.
These recreational bettors account for the majority of people who bet on sports, but there are also plenty of people who bet primarily to make money. This doesn鈥檛 mean that they don鈥檛 still enjoy themselves, it鈥檚 just that their motivations are different. They generally put a lot more thought into the wagers that they make, and dedicate some time to researching and analyzing the various factors that can affect the outcome of games and events.
We鈥檙e not saying to just make a decision without putting any thought into it. Take everything we said into consideration, but don鈥檛 stress out. All that really matters is that you enjoy yourself, and gamble responsibly with money you can afford to lose. It makes sense to start by focusing on any sports you already follow, but don鈥檛 be afraid to try out others at some point. If you don鈥檛 follow any sports, start with the popular ones and see how it goes from there. Once you get a hang of it, you might want to try a couple of the more obscure sports.
If making money is more important to you than having fun, then here are two more questions you need to ask.
In order to make regular and consistent profits, you are going to have to be willing to dedicate a lot of time to sports betting. You can make money without it become a full-time job, but don鈥檛 expect to be successful if you just spend a few minutes choosing your selections. If your time is limited, you should probably focus on just one or two sports. Stick to the mainstream sports when possible, as it doesn鈥檛 take so long to research and analyze the necessary information for those.
If you have a more flexible schedule, you can think about betting on a few sports. You don鈥檛 HAVE to do this, but it鈥檚 a realistic option at least. You can also consider betting on the more obscure sports where the research and analysis is likely to take longer.
The second question is ultimately the most important one though. Really, this is what your decision should come down to. It鈥檚 easier to make money right now from betting on sports that you鈥檙e already familiar with, but you鈥檝e got to think carefully about whether other sports might offer better opportunities in the long run. It鈥檚 probably best to focus on just one or two sports to start with, but you might want to start betting on more once you鈥檙e getting consistently good results.
This is just some broad advice, and you don鈥檛 need to follow it to the letter. Remember, we can鈥檛 actually tell you explicitly what to do here. There鈥檚 no right or wrong decision, as you鈥檝e just got to consider what鈥檚 best for you. The information and advice we鈥檝e offered will hopefully help. If you鈥檙e still not sure what to do, then just take some time to experiment with the different approaches. Eventually, you鈥檒l find one that works for you.