Whether betting on the Super Bowl, March Madness or an MLB game, sports betting can be fun and profitable, but only if you do your research. This includes learning how the odds work, what types of bets are available and the terminology used by bettors.
The most popular bet type is based on the point spread. The spread takes a certain number of points away from the favorite team and gives them to the underdog to level the playing field. The favored team will have a minus sign (-) in front of its odds and the underdog will have a plus sign (+) in front of its odds.
In addition to the full-game odds, some sportsbooks also offer a variety of other odds during the game that are constantly being adjusted based on how the game is played out. These are known as live odds and have grown in popularity in recent years. For example, the wind can play a major role in totals for baseball games; a warning-track fly ball that would normally sail over the right-field fence might be pushed into the stands by a strong breeze, pushing the total higher.
Another important factor is maintaining discipline and not betting more than you can afford to lose. Always keep track of your bets in a spreadsheet and avoid getting excited after winning a few bets; this can lead to foolish wagers that cost you money. It is also a good idea to bet only on sports that you can follow closely and/or have some innate knowledge of.