Sports Betting 101

sports betting

Whether you’re interested in sports betting for fun or to make money, the first thing to know is that it takes time to learn how to bet smarter. The bettor who wants to be successful needs to understand the terminology, the language and, most importantly, how to make value bets.

Value bets are wagers on teams or individual players that have a greater chance of winning than implied by their odds. This is the best way to make money from sports betting. If you’re new to sports betting, we recommend starting with a site that offers a wide variety of markets and low vig. Also, be sure to research each site carefully — check out user reviews, look at their promotions and bonuses, and make sure they offer the types of bets you want to place.

Point spreads, or handicaps, are designed to even the playing field by making one team a favorite and the other an underdog. The bettors must decide how much stronger one team is than the other, based on the unique circumstances of each game. Then, bettors either take the points (betting on the underdog) or give them up (betting on the favorite). Proposition bets, or props, are any wager outside of a standard spread, moneyline or over/under. These can include player props like the number of strikeouts in a game. Those bets are usually refunded if they push, but some sportsbooks count them as losses.