How to gamble without the risk

Many cynics will tell you that the phrase ‘sensible gambler’ is an oxymoron. How could a person be sensible if they throw away their money on such fruitless, hard-to-predict activities, they say? Well, it’s not always quite as simple as that.

You see, with a bit of foresight, a lot of research and shedloads of practice, anyone can make money from gambling. The particular game itself doesn’t really matter: it could be football, poker, NBA or baccarat. Even bingo can be a wise choice for beginners if played correctly. What it comes down to is following some simple, yet crucial golden rules.

1. Play it cool

Don’t let emotion dictate your choices. Even if you’ve lost every game or hand that day, don’t become overwhelmed and start staking money in some vain attempt to claw it all back. Accept that you will lose sometimes and stick to your wider, long-term strategy.

2. Practise constantly

If you’re betting on Formula One racing, then you need to know every aspect of each track and car better than the drivers themselves. The same goes for bingo, poker, football and all other games. You only gain this knowledge through practice, practice and even more practice.

3. Seek value

It’s always tempting to opt for the first offer that comes along, but don’t fall into such lazy habits. There’s usually a better deal elsewhere, so scout out the casinos with the most favourable rules and the bookmakers with the best odds. Do this consistently and those small gains will add up over time.

4. Keep it simple

Accumulators in sports games and predicting the exact number that’s going to come up on the roulette table both bring in the big cash if you win. But that’s only because you almost certainly won’t, something professionals know better than most. Stick to simpler, one-off bets you can specialise in and pull off.

5. Play the rules

Every so often, the rules can be bent in your favour. On the blackjack table, a very astute, well-practised casino veteran can count the cards coming out of the deck, giving them a slight percentage advantage over the house. For horse racing bets, the coupons provided at the start of the week at brick and mortar bookmakers sometimes offer better odds than the same companies online. Seek out such strategies and gems, then use them whenever you can.

6. Have a staking strategy

For instance, say you’re betting on football matches. Firstly, you need to know the bet is likely – or, at least, quite likely – to win. Secondly, you need to assess the value you’re receiving from it. So, if there’s a 50-50 chance of something happening and you’re being offered 2/1 odds, you should bet more in this case than you would at even odds another time.

7. Find a niche

Finally, the most important part of becoming a successful gambler is to specialise. Jacks of all trades don’t win anything, as they don’t know more than the bookmakers or house. Even if you can’t reach this point, the closer you get to it, the closer you will get to that seven-figure bank balance you crave.

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