Sports Betting Bankroll Management: Everything You Need To Know

You don’t have to be a financial expert to know that betting on sports is a bad short-term investment. Even the most successful sports bettors will tell you that making money from sports betting is more difficult than it seems.

It won’t happen overnight, requiring a dedicated and efficient approach over the long run. This is where efficient bankroll management comes in, helping you minimize your losses and give yourself a better chance of profiting over time.

In this article, we’ll explain what sports betting bankroll management is and how it can help you stay in the black.

What Is Bankroll Management in Betting?

sports betting bankroll management

Bankroll management is the practice of smart money management when wagering on sports. It involves setting aside a certain amount of money you’re comfortable losing and following a long-term betting strategy that allows you to only bet a small percentage of your bankroll on each game or match.

For example, if you have a $500 bankroll, you might only bet $5-10 on each game. This may not seem like much, but it can add up over time if you’re winning more often than you’re losing.

Why Is Betting Bankroll Management Important?

Sports betting is a high-risk, high-reward activity. While it’s possible to make a lot of money if you know what you’re doing, it’s also very easy to lose everything you’ve put in. Bankroll management in sports betting is important because it helps you stay disciplined and limit your sports betting losses, but that’s not its only purpose.

Benefits of Bankroll Management in Betting

Bankroll management has various advantages in addition to keeping sports bettors from suffering financial losses.


There are numerous types of bets in different sports, and sometimes a sports bettor can easily get dragged into a cycle of trying out new things with various degrees of success.

Sound bankroll management can help players avoid overspending and rapidly depleting their betting bankrolls. Additionally, it enables them to pinpoint wagers with higher success rates so that they know how to concentrate their efforts in the future.

Avoiding Tilt

Proper bankroll management can also stop a sports bettor from going on tilt. This is a term used in gambling that refers to letting your emotions take over, which often leads to bad decisions. When you’re on tilt, you’re more likely to make impulsive sports bets that are not based on logic or reason. This is one of the quickest ways to lose money.

This will inevitably happen at least once during your sports betting career. After all, we’re only human, but if you stay disciplined and follow a proper bankroll management betting strategy, you should be able to avoid this common pitfall that even the most successful sports bettors can fall prey to.


The concept of a “unit” is key to bankroll management. A unit is a bet size you’re comfortable betting on any game or match. For example, if you have a starting bankroll of $500, you might consider each $5 bet a “unit.”

Units are also used to measure success in the sports betting world. In essence, you can compare your overall results to other sports bettors by comparing how many units you have gone up in relation to your starting bankroll.

It has been shown to be a more effective method than comparing how much you earned because it allows for comparisons of two bettors with different starting bankrolls.

Gambling Addiction

Bankroll betting management is also important from a psychological perspective. For some people, gambling can become addictive, so it’s important to keep this in mind before you start betting on sports.

Having a bankroll management system can be helpful, but it ultimately depends on your self-discipline. If you think you have a gambling problem, it’s important to seek help from a professional. Fortunately, there are many resources available to help you if you think you have a problem.

Bankroll Management Betting Strategies

Assuming you’re already familiar with how sports betting works, we’ll move straight on to bankroll management strategies. When it comes to sports betting bankroll management, there are many strategies to consider, but we’ll focus on the three simplest and most popular ones.

Flat Betting

The first and most common bankroll management strategy is flat betting. This approach involves betting the same amount on each game or match. For example, if you have a $500 starting bankroll, you might bet $10 on each game.

This sports betting strategy has two methods: win and risk. Both the “win” and “risk” methods involve placing a wager on a game while considering payout odds.

With the “win” method, when you bet on a game with payout odds of -120, you would have to risk 1.1 units to win 1.0, while with the “risk” method, you’re risking 1.0 units for a return of 0.83. Whichever you choose is up to you, but it’s important to be aware of the difference so you can make the best decision for your betting strategy.

The main downside is that your potential profits are limited. If you only bet $10 on each game, you’re not going to make much money even if you win most of your sports bets. However, because this strategy is very conservative and reduces your risk of going bankrupt, we recommend it to new sports bettors.

Percentage Betting

Percentage betting is the second most popular bankroll management betting strategy. This method involves betting a certain percentage of your bankroll on each game or match. For example, if you have a $500 starting bankroll, you should bet between 1% and 5% of it on each game. We would advise you to go with the golden middle of 2.5%, which would be $12.5 in this case.

Unlike the prior technique, this one provides a significantly bigger upscale benefit while still safeguarding you against catastrophic loss. The only disadvantage is that it will take considerably longer to recover from a losing streak, and your sports betting bankroll can dwindle as rapidly as it can grow.

Confidence Betting

The last strategy on our list is confidence betting. Unlike the previous two, this one isn’t as reliable because it relies too much on the sports bettor’s judgment to rank potential bets based on how confident they are about the bet. Such strategies are only feasible for a professional who can maintain a level head and is knowledgeable enough about the sport in question to reach a reliable conclusion.

The confidence model entails allocating a certain number of units to each game or match based on your level of confidence in your selection. For example, if you are confident in the outcome of a pick, you can assign it three units. But if you aren’t as confident, you can assign it only one unit.

The main advantage of this approach is that it allows you to maximize your profits by betting more money on the picks you’re most confident in. The downside is that it’s more complicated than the other two strategies and can be difficult to stick to if you’re not disciplined.


In sports betting, money management is extremely important, and now that you know how to implement different strategies, you can freely fill in your betting slip and start your career as a professional sports bettor.

You should be aware that even professionals don’t win every time, so don’t feel discouraged when you’re on a losing streak. Simply put your confidence in your bankroll management strategies and remember to always be disciplined, establish limitations, and avoid chasing losses.


What is a good bankroll for sports betting?

There is no definitive answer to this question, as it depends on how much money you’re willing to gamble. If you start with less, you can use percentage betting since it will keep your unit size small, and if you are more confident in your judgment, you can use the confidence model.

How much of your bankroll should you bet per day?

This depends on how much money you are willing to gamble. A good rule of thumb is to never bet more than 5% of your bankroll on any given day. If you want to be cautious, don’t go over 3%.

How do I build my bankroll sports bet?

The best way to build your sports betting bankroll is by implementing proper money management and by continuing to add a set amount each week or month. If you use percentage betting, it will gradually but steadily increase your bet size.

Is a unit 1% of your bankroll?

A unit is any amount that you’re comfortable betting. It doesn’t have to be 1% of your bankroll, but it’s a good starting point if you’re new to sports betting bankroll management.