Sports handicappers typically have professional experience in either applied mathematics or in statistics and probabilities. Handicappers without the professional experience typically have obtained extensive knowledge in advanced mathematics during their maturation in the sports betting sector. Some of the most famous and successful handicappers include Haralabos Voulgaris, Jimmy “The Greek” Snyder and Billy Walters. Handicappers commonly use advanced techniques from statistics in order to create unique betting systems and reliable confidence levels to help predict the potential outcomes of select games. Handicappers use data and math models to mitigate as much of the guess work as possible when gauging lines in a sportsbook.
Confidence is paramount to anyone who is interested in sustaining long-term income from sports betting. Confidence can have several meanings to the various levels of sports bettors gambling on events throughout the year. Confidence is a common term used by media pundits and experts in the industry; use of the word has become somewhat cliche in certain venues. Regardless of how well the individual bettor understands the concept, confidence always plays a significant role when placing wagers. However, overconfidence can hamper the average bettor on a routine basis. Successful handicappers are typically able to frame and manage the concept of confidence in mathematical terms.
Confidence is often used as a subjective term. Does the bettor have confidence in the picks? If so, how confident? Does the bettor have confidence to commit to the betting system– without overriding the findings with subjectivity? How confident can the bettor be in the handicapping service, or in recent newsbreaks pertaining to the upcoming game? These are all valid questions that gamblers deal with on a routine basis. When assessing their picks, many bettors create a hierarchy according to how confident they are about the predicted outcome of each game. The most experienced handicappers primarily operate in mathematics in order to establish a confidence interval or identify thresholds for each confidence level.
Confidence is vital because it yields discipline and consistency in sports betting. Establishing a hierarchy of picks, or committing to a proven betting system, helps many amateur gamblers spot weaknesses in their own approach. Gamblers who aspire to become successful handicappers need to develop a comprehensive knowledge of statistics and probabilities in order to take a more precise and effective approach in assessing confidence for each pick. Reviewing material in an “Intro to Stats” course may be the best way to begin developing an adequate understanding of how to objectively analyze any betting system or sportsbook line.
Successful handicappers are able calculate, apply and assess mathematical terms like standard deviation, sample, margin of error, confidence intervals and confidence levels. In turn, successful handicappers are often meticulous with keeping a record or log of the calculations leading to each pick. In order to calculate standard deviation, margin of error and confidence intervals, bettors only need to apply simple calculations involving the sample size, mean and critical value. Although the margin of error can be any size, the confidence level derived from this calculation is typically 80, 90, 95 or 98 percent. In order to be truly effective in the sport betting industry, gamblers need to obtain this level of understanding in both probabilities and statistics.
One of the most significant factors that causes biased in amaterur bettors and handicappers is overconfidence. This is a natural bias that most people deal with throughout their everyday lives. Generally speaking, we all tend to overstate our own skill and abilities– this can be extremely costly when gambling on sporting events. We often think our thoughts are logical, but we underestimate or remain oblivious of our own inability to realistically assess all the variables relevant in a given situation . The increasing amount of data we have in this day and age makes it even easier to overlook our own shortcomings when it comes to completing the appropriate amount of due diligence.
Because of the nature of their activities, gamblers and investors are even more susceptible to believing in their own skills, while simultaneously demoting the impact of chance. Studies have shown that the more someone invests,, the more overconfident they tend to become. In turn, the more overconfident someone is, the more risk laden their investments tend to be. This dynamic decreases the rate of ROI over the long-term. Fans and bettors in sports are typically more prone to employ baseless overconfidence than the more disciplined investors and day traders.
Generally speaking, handicappers perform many of the same functions that investors do when researching and trading stocks. The abundance of coverage, highlights and replays dupes many amateur bettors into thinking they are informed enough to successfully bet on the outcome of the game. Unfortunately, most of this production is conjecture and hyperbole intended to drive viewer ratings– the stats and predictions average fans receive are rarely based on sound mathematical models or betting systems