When it comes to the wide range of sports bettors, in my experience, most fall into the category of what I’d call the “weekend warrior.”
This is the guy (or gal) whose life doesn’t necessarily revolve around gambling, but it’s still a big part of the weekly rituals that are college football Saturday, NFL Sunday, and of course, the Monday and Thursday games as well.
At the end of the day, the weekend warrior isn’t trying to quit their day job. They just want a few extra bucks on the side and to have some fun along the way. These tips help you do just that.
1 – Keep Track of Your Bankroll Continuously
One of the most difficult aspects of only betting a few times a week is that your bankroll can get away from you quickly. Anyone who’s ever tried to establish a steady, trackable bankroll knows that if you miss a few games, it’s almost impossible to backtrack accurately.
You might be wondering, “Is it really that big of a deal if I miss a few games?” The answer is that it depends on what your overall goals are in the long-term. It also depends on how much money you’re risking and how much you’re hoping to win.
I’ll admit that if you’re just looking to add some excitement to the games, it’s probably not going to make a difference whether or not you’re conscientiously tracking your bets and bankroll. However, if you really do want to improve your betting strategy enough to make some money, it’s necessary.
Now, if you don’t have a bankroll set up, that should be at the top of your priority list. Simply set aside an amount of money that you’re going to use exclusively for betting. If you do this as a deposit on a betting website, it’ll do all the tracking work for you.
If you take the route I just laid out above, be sure you’re making a note of each time you deposit money on the website. If you’re putting money in each week and never making any withdrawals, that might be an indication that you need to change up your betting strategy or maybe even take a week off.
2 – Stick to What You Know
If you’re someone who bets on a daily basis, your strategy is all about finding value. With a high enough of volume of bets, over time value will win out. This isn’t so much the case for the casual bettor. The weekend warrior should be sticking to the most basic plays and only in the sport which they’re familiar.
In most cases (okay, in nearly all cases), this is going to mean betting on the NFL and NCAA football. Of course, there may be another sport that works its way into the rotation. But for the most part, the vast majority of money wagered is going to be on the gridiron.
With That in Mind, It’s Crucial to Make the Most of Every Single Pick
As I mentioned at the start of this section, the volume probably isn’t going to be there for a strategy that revolves around playing the odds. This is one of the instances where the actual winning percentage might be on equal footing with the financial side.
Ordinarily, I’d advocate for betting in such a way that you could lose more than 50% of your bets and still win money. But obviously, the fewer bets you make, the higher percentage you need to win to be profitable. Winning more than half your bets is hard, but what can you do to improve your chances?
First, you can’t ignore the information available to you. Casual NFL bettors, for example, tend to bet based on something like “feel” or “instinct.” Unfortunately, the sportsbooks are masters at manipulating these feelings into making the wrong play.
Before making a bet, make sure you have three concrete reasons why you’re betting the way you are, and at the very least, you won’t just be blindly throwing money out there and hoping for the best.
3 – Find a Sportsbook That Fits Your Needs
It’s no secret that there are seemingly-endless sportsbooks to choose from these days. This is beneficial to players because there are more options than ever, but it also requires some work to find the right platform for your specific situation.
At the top of the list of what’s most important for the weekend warrior bettor is the money withdrawal procedure. This can vary significantly from site to site, and it could also be impacted by the state in which you reside.
Some sports betting sites require a certain amount of money to be risked in order to “cash out.” For example, one website requires $1,000 in bets before you can get your money off the site. Other sites have different rules in terms of how frequently you can cash out. An example would be a site that allows only one withdrawal per month if you want to avoid paying a major fee.
If you’re living in a state where gambling is fully legal, you may be able to avoid running into some of these issues. With that being said, any time you sign up for an online sportsbook, you should review the payout protocols before you make a deposit. Once your money is on the site, you have to abide by their rules. Make sure you’re aware of them beforehand.
4 – Don’t Pay for Picks
Experienced sharps know this already, but if you’re just dipping your toe into the sports betting game, it’s important to note that paying for picks is never a good idea.
When I say “paying for picks,” I’m referring to unreliable websites that require a subscription in return for betting advice. They usually boast something about a computer model or a professional gambler who has returned X amount of money over the past X number of seasons or bets.
The problem with these models is that they assume you’re going to be betting on a much higher volume of games than you actually are. Not to mention, trying to predict the outcome of sporting events is an extremely difficult proposition. Often times, the experts aren’t winners because they’re great at picking games, they just have a deep enough bankroll to keep betting until they see profit.
Any time you’re paying for something you should expect to get something in return. Betting experts can’t promise wins, and thus, I would stay away from them at all costs.
Also, why would you pay for picks when offer a wide variety of sports betting picks for free! Check out our most recent picks below or head on over to our picks page for a full look.
Every gambler goes through a learning curve. However, if you’re aware of the common mistakes that new bettors make, you can save yourself the trouble.
Most “rookie” bettors, which likely includes the group of weekend warriors, fall victim to choosing favorites too frequently, making unrealistic parlay bets, and forget about the value to be enjoyed with the moneyline underdog.
Just because you’re not a sharp doesn’t mean you can’t bet like one. The fact is that most sportsbooks rely on the generally-uninformed bettors to lose at a rate that’s high enough to pay off the sharps. Remember that the concept of fading the public, however controversial it might be, exists for a reason.
6 – It’s Supposed to Be Fun
If you’re in the weekend warrior class of sports gambler, you should be betting with one goal above all: to make the games more exciting!
When you bet $10 or $20 on a game, consider it as “admission.” You might get it back, you might lose it, but you’ve paid to make your next three hours more entertaining than they would have been otherwise.
It’s unlikely that you’re going to make a life-changing amount of money as a casual sports bettor. Though this might be true, you can add plenty of excitement to Saturdays and Sundays by having some skin in the game.
If betting starts to become financially stressful, you’ve crossed over into a bad place. Only bet an amount of money that, if you lose, you can look back and say, “It was still worth it for the entertainment value alone.”
If you’re able to do that, you’ve already won.
All the sports network TV shows that give out betting advice might cause you to feel intimidated about sports gambling in general. But if you take the right approach, it’s really all just in good fun.
At the end of the day, your focus should be more on maximizing entertainment than paying the mortgage. If you proceed with this mindset, you’re going to have an enjoyable betting experience.
Michael Stevens has been researching and writing topics involving the gambling industry for well over a decade now and is considered an expert on all things casino and sports betting. Michael has been writing for GamblingSites.org since early 2016. ...
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