Sports Betting is a lot of fun. It changes the way you watch games – be it something slow-paced like cricket, or fast and action-filled like Rugby, betting on a game will never fail to up the ante.

Unlike Casino Games, sports betting relies on a vast and detailed knowledge of a sport, its teams, players, and their histories, rather than the rules of a game you yourself are playing. It can almost be described as a meta-game, a game played around and with reference to another game.

For this reason, its appeal is far broader than that of the Casino – offering a new way to engage with an already much-loved hobby rather than a world to step into. However, Sports Betting can seem a little intimidating at first as it’s filled with jargon, and there are many options open to would-be bettors. Let us explain.

Fractions Vs Decimals

 This is incredibly simple, but something that does require explanation for first time Sports Bettors in the digital era. In recent times, certain countries like the UK and what is referred to as the commonwealth would use decimals to express odds. In Europe, however, decimals were preferred. So 10/1 would be expressed as simply 10. Most Sports Betting sites allow you to change how the are viewed.

Fixed Odds

The old-school way of betting, fixed odds allows the bettor to know how much they stand to win or lose before the outcomes are revealed. It’s undoubtedly the safest way to bet, but the winnings are limited. Let’s say you bet $5 on a 10/1, you already know that if you win the bet, you will win $11 (ten times your wager plus your initial bet returned).

If you lose, all you stand to lose is the original $1 you put down. Fixed odds are known in the US as moneyline odds, and expressed as a negative value for the favourite, and a positive value for the underdog. However, it must be noted that ‘moneyline betting’ implies that the subject of the bet is simply the outcome of the game.

Spread Betting

Spread betting is the newest and fastest growing form of sports betting that offers more risk, and more reward. With a point spread, the bookmaker creates a point market of various outcomes (example: team A will score 10-14 points).

The bettor can then ‘buy’ on the higher value or ‘sell’ on the lower (example: bettor buys $5 at 14). The payout/loss is then calculated by taking the difference between the outcome and the suggested figure and multiplying it by the original wager, then adding the original wager to that amount (example: team A scores 16 points, 16-14 = 2, 2x$5 = $10, $10 + $5 = $15). In this style of playing, wins can be much higher, but so too can losses.

If you’re new to sports betting, start with betting on the moneyline before moving on to the point spread. It’ll stand you in good stead while honing your skills and refining your knowledge of the game.