Are you a rational or irrational sports bettor?

The efficient market hypothesis (EMH) has been a staple belief within the economic world for ages. In simple terms, EMH implies that the prices of all items in financial markets are correct, that is neither under-priced nor over-priced. From a betting scenario, EMH would imply that odds represent the true probability of an outcome – adjusted to the bookmakers margin. If EMH was true, then no one can make long-term profits through betting and trading; or rather any long-term profits are a result of luck rather than skill.

Even the most successful sports bettors in the world develop bad habits, and those bad habits have an impact on their bottom line. Those bad habits will kill any of your skill or luck, or whatever you call it.

Believing your own hype

In order to be a sports bettor you have to have an ego. You have to believe that you are smart enough to outsmart the sportsbooks and the betting public, and that you can get into the heads of athletes and predict what they are going to do. If you dont have an ego then you wont be nearly driven enough to put in the work it takes to succeed. The problem, though, is that when you have an ego it is easy for that ego to get inflated and grow too big for itself.

Cutting corners

Becoming a winning sports bettor takes a whole lot of work. You have to have the determination to find an approach that works for you, and the discipline to keep doing it whether things are going well or poorly. Once people have been betting for a while, though – and especially if they start to enjoy their success – they can start to try to cut some corners to make the process a bit less onerous. They might spend a bit less time handicapping each game, or spend less time watching games. They might slack off on their record keeping. The problem is, though, that when you cut corners you are no longer doing what you were doing when you were winning, so there is no guarantee that you can keep winning. getting lazy is the single biggest enemy of long term sports betting success.

Sticking with the same books

If the sportsbook that you are using is offering you bad prices then over the course of time you are throwing a lot of money away – especially if you bet on a lot of games or bet a lot of money per game. It is very important that you regularly look around to see if there are other places where you can get better prices for the sports and types of bets you prefer. You might also find that another sportsbook can help you out by posting lines sooner, making it easier to add funds, or offering a wider range of bets. Getting complacent and sticking with one book because it is easiest is not a smart solution in the competitive, constantly evolving world of sportsbooks.

Sticking to same teams or sports

There are some people who only bet on certain teams, leagues, or sports. They do that because it is what they know, and what they are comfortable with. Unless you can be sure, though, that those teams or leagues offer the best possible betting opportunities for your skills or interests then you are missing out. It could be that another conference or league offers much better value because there is less media attention, or that as smaller league might be easier to handicap and find value in. You always need to be assessing if the sports you are betting on are the ones best suited for your goals and skills.