Betting is risky, that’s why it’s fun and you can earn money doing it. For many people, betting is a way to have fun and make a little cash on the side. Some professionals take betting very seriously and have figured out how to make even more money. Both of these types of bettors still manage to bet responsibly. There are many guides on how to bet smart like the most sophisticated of investors.

Betting responsibly is where you place logical bets that aren’t backed by unhealthy behaviors, especially addictive ones that could drain your wallet and adversely affect your life. Here we have tips on how you can improve your betting game and do it without developing bad behaviors.

Set A Budget

The best thing you can do to bet responsibly, no matter what you’re betting on, is set a budget. Your budget determines how much you have to bet with. Separate from your wallet and your bank account, this is the pool of cash you can play with when you start placing wagers.

Along with your budget, you should also set a loss limit. This is often a percentage of your budget, let’s say 10% to 25%, and if you lose that much in consecutive losses without winning anything back then you should quit. Don’t try to win lost cash back after you’ve passed the limit. That’s called chasing losses and it’s a big problem for those with addictive personalities.

With both your budget and your loss limit, you need to hold yourself accountable. A loss limit means nothing if you don’t have the willpower to stop when betting stops being fun and profitable.

Make Straight Wagers

Straight wagers are easy, you just bet on which horse will come first, second, or third in the race. There is nothing wrong with going for simple straight wagers that are easily understood and easily managed. Keep it simple and make straight wagers that pay off consistently instead of going for complex, ambitious wagers.

With exotic wagers, they may have multiple stages or span multiple horse races. While that gives you the opportunity to win more, they’re also more complex and require a lot to go right for you before you get any payout. The losses can get out of control with those bets, too.

Research The Horse

Researching your wager is great advice for any gambler, so it’s important when you want to place responsible bets that minimize risk and maximize profit potential. There are three main things that you should do when choosing a horse to bet on.

First, listen to the commentators if they are available. Commentators give a rundown of the race as it happens, and there are multiple races throughout the day, so pick your horse and don’t bet on it. Instead, observe for a race or two and see how they hold up. You can judge their performance and see how well they deal with their terrain.

Secondly, check out the horse when it is led out to the racing track. A horse that’s sweating heavily is clearly nervous, so it’s probably not making anybody money today. The winning horse won’t be jittery, they’ll save their energy for the race itself.

Thirdly, you should research the current race track, the jockey who’s riding with your chosen horse, and their history, including the jockey and the horse’s success rate on the current terrain. If there’s a jockey that’s in the top ten for jockey standings, they’re much more likely to win than other riders. You should make sure the horse hasn’t moved its handicap rank, too.

Do your homework and figure out if the wager is worth your money. Betting because of random feelings that aren’t backed by research isn’t responsible. If this requires you to buy certain services, like exclusive articles and picks by professional handicappers and successful bettors, you may want to consider that. If you’re a profitable bettor and the information you get is good, you’ll make more back than you spend.

Don’t Play Favorites

Don’t play favorites. Sure, don’t bet based on a superficial preference for one horse over the other, but you should also reconsider betting on the favorite to win.

Favorites perform better on small tracks but, in larger events, you tend to win often by betting against the favorite. There’s no guarantee that it’s a winning bet, what’s important is you don’t fall into the trap of only betting on favorites.

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