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Managing Your Sports Betting Bankroll

Gamblers who are new to sports betting often make many small mistakes that cut into their bottom line. These can range from betting too many events, taking sub-optimal lines, or betting probable losers just because of personal bias or loyalty. The biggest mistake green sports bettors make, however, is not being mindful of bankroll management.

Bankroll management is a surprisingly simple and obvious concept, but many a gambler has quickly found themselves going broke by disregarding it. The idea behind bankroll management is simply to control the size and volume of your individual bets based on the total amount of your bankroll. For example, say you have a working bankroll of $5000 that is not replenishable. That is, once you lose that money, you are out of action. A common mistake is for a novice gambler to take that $5000 and place ten $500 bets over a weekend. Even worse, some might even see a game they feel strongly about and place the entire $5000 on it as a hail-mary move. The problem with this is that he is forcing himself to have to win the bet(s) in order to stay in action.

So whats the best way to avoid being in that position? A good rule of thumb is to never put more than 10% of your bankroll in play at any given time. Take wagering the same ten bets over a weekend as an example: the smart gambler following good bankroll management will limit himself to risking $500 over that weekend by only wagering $50 on each game. While this precludes him from landing a potentially huge score, he also limits his risk. If all ten bets turn out to be losers, he still has $4500 to keep him in action.

As you start winning bets and your bankroll grows, you may occasionally find spectacular lines that you feel offer a better than average chance of resulting in a profit. Sometimes these situations may call for you to place a larger-than-average bet because the potential for a larger-than-average reward is so much greater. By following good bankroll management rules, youll be able to take advantage of these situations, because you were able to avoid overextending your bankroll in the past. And if youre unlucky enough to lose the bet, you still find yourself with a healthy bankroll to play with as long as you scale your subsequent bet sizes back using the 10% rule.

In the end, sports betting is a marathon, not a sprint. Proper bankroll management means you wont hit the lucky and improbable big scores that more reckless gamblers sometimes fluke their way into. In the long run though, this also means youll be steadily building your bankroll and still be in action long after the gamblers who dont utilize proper bankroll management find themselves broke.


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