Hedging Betting Tips and Strategy

February 20, 2023

You’ve probably heard the expression “hedge your bets” at some point in your life. But do you clearly understand what it means to hedge your bets and how to do it? We’ve discovered that many sports bettors need to know this notion or comprehend it well enough to use it effectively.


Hedging your bets can be frightening and intimidating. Still, when done correctly, it can assist you in ensuring profits, reducing risk and variance, and providing flexibility to accommodate changes in predictions.


In this article, we’ll explain what hedge betting is, its benefits when you should use it, and the methods and tips you’ll need to execute it correctly and profitably. After this course, you will be comfortable enough with how to hedge bets to incorporate them into your particular successful sports betting strategy.


What Exactly Is Hedge Betting?


Before we proceed, we must ensure that everyone in this room knows what hedge betting is in the context of sports betting. Hedge betting is a wager placed against another stake to assure profit regardless of the outcome of a game or contest. In other words, a hedge bet is made against yourself to ensure you win money, irrespective of what happens in a game. If you hedge correctly, you don’t even have to watch the game if you don’t want to because you already know you’ll make money.


Others argue that a properly hedged wager is the only sure bet in the casino. They would be correct.


Many of you are probably perplexed right now. How can placing a wager against yourself ever guarantee that you’ll win? Wouldn’t that consign you to failure? Nope! There are numerous scenarios in which the chances of a specific wager will alter. This allows you to gamble on the opposite side (against yourself) and ensure your earnings.


Let’s look at an example of a fairly typical hedge bet opportunity.


You bet on the Miami Dolphins to win the Super Bowl at the startup of the NFL season. We’ll ignore that we think you’re insane, yet you still placed this bet at 100 to 1. In other words, if you stake $1, you will earn $100. You decide to place a $100 wager, which means that if the Dolphins miraculously win the Super Bowl, you will receive $10,000.


Assume Dan Marino decides to come out of retirement and join the Dolphins in Week 1. He begins tossing the ball like a pro. The Dolphins win the regular season and advance to the playoffs. Their surprising dominance continues into the playoffs, and the Dolphins advance to the Super Bowl against the Dallas Cowboys!


The game is a toss-up, with the odds of both sides winning at (-110). These are the odds displayed when a game is virtually a “pick ’em,” or when either team has a 50/50 probability of winning.


You’re very stoked at this point since you’re on the verge of making $10,000 if the Dolphins, led by old man Marino, can beat the Cowboys. If the Dolphins win, you will receive $10,000. You lose $100 if the Cowboys win. Whoa.


You moved from betting $100 on a single game to betting $10,000 on a single game.


While you might leave it alone and hope the Dolphins win, there is a chance for you to lock in some profit. Hedging is helpful in this situation. This is how it would seem.


You’d wager $5,250 for the Cowboys to win. Absolutely, you would be betting AGAINST what you want to transpire with your original Dolphins futures bet. But first, let’s look at each outcome to see why this works.


  • If the Dolphins triumph, you will profit $10,000 on your original futures wager! However, you would lose your hedge bet of $5,250. If the Dolphins win, your total profit will be $4,750. It wasn’t an awful day at work.


  • If the Cowboys triumph, you will lose your original $100 futures wager. Nonetheless, you would win your hedge bet for a profit of approximately $4,772. If the Cowboys won, your total profit would be $4,662. Again, not a horrible day at work.


Hence, regardless matter who wins the game, you’ll walk away with around $4700!


That is the allure of hedging. Yes, you won’t be able to make $10,000, but you’ll also ensure that you stay in the game with a $100 loss.


This is how you hedge your bets. You limit your earning potential, but by doing so, you can lock in some income regardless of the game’s outcome. In a later section of this article, we’ll look at some of the many situations when hedging would be useful.


The Advantages of Hedge Betting


The preceding example should have given you a good idea of why hedge betting is a good practice. But what exactly are the advantages of hedge betting? We’ll go through the three primary benefits of hedge betting in the sections below. Remember, you are not required to hedge, although amateur and professional sports bettors are major fans and find it quite useful. This is why.


Profit is Guaranteed


The Super Bowl between the Dolphins and the Cowboys should have made this benefit very evident. You can position yourself to gain money regardless of the outcome of a game or games. You will have to give up your earning potential, but the trade-off is that you will always walk away a winner.


Everything will have to go your way for you to get there, but once they do, you may effectively cash out your betting ticket early for a lower profit than if you stayed the entire time. You don’t need to wait until the last deciding game if you don’t want to, but the earlier you hedge, the more profit you give up and the more complex it becomes.



With the abovementioned situation, you may have hedged in the divisional round when four teams remained. You would have had to wager on the divisional games and the Super Bowl, effectively reducing your possible profit to around $2500 guaranteed at best. Still, that might be fine with you, especially if you only wager a little money on games or if your financial situation has altered since you placed the initial bet.


Lower Variance and Risk


Not only does hedge betting ensure earnings, but it also reduces variation and risk. If you’re like the person in our case, you probably don’t wager $5,000 or $10,000. $100 could be the largest bet you’ve ever placed and very close to the limit of what you’re comfortable wagering. Even if your wager was only $100 in our case, you do not have $10,000 riding on a single game. You can pretend it’s simply a $100 bet, but we all know that it’s a lot higher risk.


Winning futures and long shots might be difficult. Even if you choose wagers and teams with a lot of value, it can take a long time between victories. You can reduce a lot of the fluctuation and risk by planning to hedge, and you can lock in smaller but more frequent wins.


Consider Prediction Changes


What happens when what you expect to happen changes? If you still need to make a bet, you can choose not to gamble or wager on the opposite side of a game. But what if you place a bet and learn later in the season or during the game that you were probably wrong?


This is where hedging can come in handy. You can lay a wager against yourself during the game or later in the season, which may lock up a profit or decrease your losses. It would be best if you didn’t hedge so frequently when you still have a chance to win but would lock in a loss, as this is a terrible business. But there may be occasions when you wish to cut your losses and find an opportunity to do so cheaply.


Hedge Opportunities


Now that you understand what hedging your bets is, how to execute it, and the benefits of hedging, let’s talk about how to find opportunities to place a hedge bet or several hedge bets. There are three basic scenarios in which you might search for hedging possibilities if you want to lock in profits, reduce risk, or get out from under a wrong decision that you know is heading south quickly.


Futures Bets


Futures bets will likely be the most usual spot where you will ever hedge your bets. Why? Often, futures bets allow you to gain a large sum of money with a small investment. If you place your future bets early in the season, you can get good odds regardless of the sport you’re betting on.


If everything goes as planned at the end of the season or the final of the playoffs, you will be able to win a lot of money off of your tiny stake.


This means you may be looking to lock in a portion of the possible earnings. We’ll see in our tips and tactics section below that it’s a good idea to have a hedging strategy before making a futures bet if it’s something you’re interested in.


In-Game Hedging


Hedges can be on bets that take a short time to settle or begin with ridiculous betting odds. Throughout your day-to-day wagering, there are numerous possibilities to hedge. It’s less usual, however, because the amount at stake in each game will likely be more in accordance with what you’re comfortable betting. But you can still use hedging to lock in profits, especially if your judgment of how the game will play out changes.



If you’re wagering on a baseball game and you choose a considerable underdog to win. Before the game, you place a $100 wager at +360. This means that if your team wins the game, you will profit $360. Assume they come out strong and lead 4-0 entering the sixth inning. Your bet is looking fantastic at this point, and you can wait on it and hope they hold on to lock up that $360 victory.


Nevertheless, you may also look at the in-game odds and see if you can get a great deal on the opposing team. You take a look, and the opposing team is now +400 to win the game. Despite being the favorites, they are now down four runs with only a couple of innings remaining and are unlikely to win the game. This is an excellent opportunity to bet on the opposing team and lock in some of your winnings.


Assume you bet $100 on the opposing team in-game at +400. You are now promised money regardless of what occurs. If the initial underdog team you bet on wins, you make $360 less the $100 you put in-game on the other side for a net profit of $260.


Even if things go wrong and the original favorite makes a late-game comeback, you’re going home full-handed. You would lose $100 on your first wager but win $400 on your in-game bet, giving you a profit of $300.


Thus, depending on who wins, you’ll either make $260 or $300. You won’t have these clear opportunities in every game, and there will be times when you want to let things ride, but these opportunities do exist, and you should look for them if you prefer guaranteed money to take a risk, especially on a huge underdog bet.]


Parlay Bets Hedging


Parlays are another type of betting in which you can earn a small amount of money and win a large sum. For those of you who are a newbie, a parlay combines individual bets into one mega wager. To win your parlay, you must win every single bet on that parlay. A parlay might consist of two or more wagers, but you must win each one to win. While this is more difficult, you will be amply rewarded for it.


Let’s look at a situation of how a hedge bet could help you lock up some cash. Assume you wagered $100 on a six-team parlay. You must win six of the selected games to win a six-team parlay.


A $100 six-team parlay profit (all bets at -110) would be around $4,741!


Assume you’ve won the first five games, and the sixth and final game is about to begin.


You may always ride out your parlay, and if your team wins the sixth game, you will win $4,741, but if they lose, you will lose $100. Place a $2500 wager on the opposing team going into the final game. As a result of your hedge, you would lock in a profit regardless of who won.


  • If your original prediction is correct, you will profit $4,741 on your hedge bet but lose $2,500 on your individual bet. You’d walk away with a $2,241 profit.


  • If your initial pick loses, you will lose $100 on your parlay bet, but you will earn $2,273 on your bet. This would result in a $2,173 profit for you.


Thus, no matter what occurs, you will come out on top. Some might argue that you’re better off making that a five-team parlay, which is technically correct. Then there are instances when you’re so close to the money that you want to make sure you get something. It’s all a question of personal preference, but keep in mind that parlays are a popular place to hedge.


Revising your guess if something happened in the previous game makes strategic sense.




Let’s imagine the last game was a football game, and the starting quarterback of the team you’re betting on was involved in a car accident with their best running back, knocking both of them out of the game. This needs to bode better for your parlay. This is a strategic opportunity to secure a win, as you anticipate losing the previous game. You’d be better off walking away with $2,200 than $100.


Tips and Strategies for Hedge Betting


The final topic we’d want to discuss today are the tips, methods, and tricks you’ll need to know to ensure that hedge betting is advantageous for you and does not cost you a lot of money. It’s easy to do as long as you grasp the fundamentals and cover your bases.


Take some time to look through the advice and methods listed below. We strongly advise you to use all of the procedures suggested here because they are all critical to your success in hedging your bets.


Quadruple Check Your Math and Win Requirements


If you usually play tiny amounts, some of the tutorial’s recommended bet quantities may spin your head.



Suppose you’re the individual who bet $100 on the Dolphins in our previous example. You undoubtedly think that betting $5,250 on a single game is ridiculous! But this is what is required to secure your profit.

The good news is that you will always make money by hedging your bets in this manner. BUT!!! This is only true if you bet the appropriate amount on the proper side of the game.


You must quadruple verify your calculations to ensure that you place the correct-sized bet to achieve the desired result. If you make a large enough mistake in your calculations, you might lose a lot of money.


This isn’t as important if you’re only hedging on one game, but if you opt to hedge earlier in the process and must wager on numerous games, your math must be flawless. The greatest advice is to double-check your calculations and have someone else look them over. Be sure everything is in order before placing large wagers well outside your comfort zone.


It would be best if you also double-checked that you have fully grasped the terms of your initial wager. You want to ensure that you bet on exactly what you intended to wager on and that there are no circumstances in which the bet would not pay out. Nothing shouldn’t be concealed here, but make sure you read all the acceptable languages before placing a large hedge bet.


If you are unsure and want to be certain, contact the sportsbook where you placed your initial wager. Inquire with them regarding anything and everything related to that bet.


Before you place your hedge bet, make sure it is paying off the way you expect it to. It would be best if you did the same with your hedge to ensure that you have placed a proper wager.


We’re not trying to scare you or make it appear like hedge betting is difficult, but we want you to be knowledgeable of the hazards. You’re set to go as long as you double-check everything, and your arithmetic and knowledge of the bets are proper. You’ll still be uncomfortable placing such a large wager, but it will feel great when you win your guaranteed money.


Be Financially Prepared to Hedge


Do you have $5,000 lying around that you can use to make a hedge bet if you bet $10, $20, or even $100 per game? Some of you do, but most of you probably don’t. Hedging necessitates the use of capital. You need to inform the sportsbook that you’re going to hedge one of your bets and expect them to do it on your behalf. To place the wager, you must have cash on hand.


It would be ideal if they allowed you to do so, but that is different. This implies you should plan to guarantee you have enough money to make your hedge bets. You must ensure that the money is removed from your account whenever you bet in person. You may need to visit the bank if you have ATM limits. If the funds are in a separate account and must be transferred, you may need to do so a few days ahead. If you bet online, allow a day for your deposit to be processed to avoid difficulties.


We’re not going to provide you with financial advice on how to get the money if you don’t already have it, but you should be aware that it will be required if things go your way. It’s a good issue because it means you’re almost sure to win some money, but you’ll need money to make the wager. If you can’t come up with the money, you can always hedge for a lower amount and at least lock in something.


Develop a Plan in Advance


There are undoubtedly many of you here right now who are scrambling to place a hedge bet to lock in some form of profit at the last minute. If that’s you, we hope you can sort things out because there’s still time to lock in some profit.


Use it as a learning experience for everyone else. When it comes to hedging your bets, the greatest thing you can do is have a plan in case you need it. Even if you are still determining whether you will hedge or are not given the opportunity, know how you will execute if necessary.



Assume you make a six-team parlay, as we discussed in an earlier example. Even if you don’t want to hedge, what happens if something happens and you don’t think you’ll win your last game? Do you want to hang your hat and walk away with thousands of dollars? No! You should hedge to try to save some of the profit you made on five solid picks. Nevertheless, you can execute a correct hedge in time to save your bet if you have a strategy.


Prepare a strategy. It doesn’t have to be exact but know roughly what you’d bet, what you’d need to bet on, and how you’ll receive the money online or into your hands to place the bet. It’s not a big concern if you don’t need or want to use the hedge.


You Don’t Have to Hedge or Hedge to Even


You are never required to hedge or hedge to an even amount. Hedging is a matter of personal preference. Some bettors will want to ride out all of their wagers to avoid paying up extra juice to the sportsbook. Others will like the guarantees and lesser risk that come with hedging.


Is it better to hedge or not to hedge? Nope. It comes down to personal preference.


Therefore, you do not necessarily need to hedge even if you have nothing riding on the game. Instead of locking up 50% of the profits and eliminating all risk, you might lock up a smaller percentage of the profits with a smaller hedge bet and then ride the rest as a bet. This is how the hedge betting technique looks.


Take our prior Dolphins and Cowboys scenario. You’ve put $100 on the Dolphins to win the Super Bowl at odds of 100 to 1. The Dolphins have advanced to the Super Bowl, and you could win $10,000 if they win. In the preceding example, we advised you to hedge a little more than $5,000 to lock in a guaranteed profit with no risk in the game.


So, what if you still believe the Dolphins will win the Super Bowl and want to bet on the game? Instead, you could hedge $2,000. If the Dolphins lose, you will make about $1,900. Nevertheless, if the Dolphins win, you’ll make around $8,000. It is entirely up to you how much you wish to hedge.


We want to make sure you understand that hedging is not a method you have to use if you don’t want to. It’s fine to let all of your bets ride out or hedge a little bit.


Request Help If You Need It


If you need to comprehend something in hedge betting, don’t just place massive bets and hope for the best. There are no pleasant words to explain how ridiculous and incorrect that is. Before making hedge bets, read through this guide to ensure you fully understand everything. If you make a mistake, you could lose a lot of money.


If, after reading this guide, you still need to understand how anything works or you have a specific scenario that you need clarification on, seek assistance. Write about it on our website or ask your most knowledgeable sports betting pal. You can even seek assistance from one of the agents at your local sportsbook. However, if they take the time to explain things to you, make sure you tip them.




Hedge betting is not required, but it is something that many sports bettors of all skill levels enjoy doing. It can help you lock in earnings, reduce risk, and escape situations when your projections have changed. Just ensure you’re thoroughly informed about what you’re doing and that you’re not making any costly mistakes. Aside from that, enjoy the fun that is hedge betting!

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