Trading Sports Methods

Methods of Trading Sports

When it comes to Sports Trading, we have several methods to choose from. You should pick the one that suits your own style.

Trading sports has never been as exciting as today. Most of the methods are taken from financial trading and adapted for sports competitions. But there are also strategies strictly related to sports, inspired by gambling.

You can trade both before and during the event. Depending on the style, you can choose whether you are doing short-term or longer-term trading. Or if you go for small and many wins or rare but “high-ticket” wins. You can choose to follow the news, statistical data, discrepancies between odds or none of these.

Methods of Trading Sports

#1. Pre-match trading

We start with this one not only because it is our favourite, but also because it is one of the easiest and safest sports trading methods.

This involves placing bets or trades on an event (football match, tennis match, horse racing, etc.) before it begins. The goal is to buy or sell positions that you think will change in value as the event unfolds.

You can do this type of trading long before the start, at certain key moments (official announcement of the first eleven) or right before the start.

For example, you might buy (back) a position on a team to win a football match if you think the odds will shorten (steam). Or you might sell (lay) a position on a tennis player to win if you think the odds will lengthen (drift).

#2. In-play trading

This method involves placing bets or trades on an event while it is in progress. Or even close positions that you opened pre-match. The goal is to take advantage of fluctuations in the odds anytime after the event starts.

For example, you might back the draw at higher odds than you originally laid before the match started (see Lay The Draw). Or lay an even at lower odds than you originally backed.

#3. Hedging

This means making trades or bets with the intention of reducing risk. The objective is to cash out positions that are opposite to your original position, in order to secure a profit or reduce potential losses.

For example, you might back a tennis player to win at odds of 1.70 and then lay the same player at odds of 2.2 to reduce your potential loss if things don’t go as planned.

Here is a free hedging calculator.

#4. Scalping

You will definitely try at list once this method in your journey. It’s the most popular one among traders.

Consists in placing many trades with the intention of making a small profit regardless of the outcome.

The goal is to take advantage of small price movements in the market as fast as possible. 

For example, you might back under 2.5 goals at odds of 2.00 and then lay the same event at odds of 1.96, regardless of the outcome, in order to make a small profit.

#5. Swinging

Swing trading involves taking advantage of longer-term trends in the market. The goal is to identify a trend and take a position that will benefit from it over time.

For example, you might back a team to win a league at the start of the season and then lay the same team as they get closer to the end of the season, in order to secure a profit.

#6. News-based trading

This means taking advantage of news events that can affect the outcome of a sporting event. The aim is to be the first to react to the news and take a position before the market adjusts.

For example, if news breaks that a tennis player is injured, you might lay that player before the odds have a chance to reflect the news.

#7. Statistical trading

This involves using statistical models and data analysis to identify opportunities in the market. The goal is to use data to identify trends and make more informed decisions about which positions to take.

For example, you might use historical data to identify which teams tend to perform well in certain weather conditions, and then back or lay those teams accordingly.

#8. Other methods

The methods presented in this section are not exhaustive. There are multiple ways of trading sports.

Among them, we can list Value betting (placing bets or trades where the odds are in your favour – mispriced) or Arbitrage trading (identifying situations where you can place bets on all possible outcomes of an event and still make a profit, regardless of the outcome).

Other methods may appear as we progress with technology.


Each method has its own advantages and disadvantages. Don’t rely just on them to make you rich.

It’s not that simple! Any of these methods can bring you success. But, at the same time, none of them guarantees your profitability. You have to work on all your skills.

The most successful traders tend to use a combination of different methods depending on the situation and are constantly adapting their strategies based on market conditions and new information.

These methods involve more knowledge and skills than luck. But you have to be very careful when applying them because you can always turn them into gambling.


An example would be to leave the position open believing that nothing bad can happen. Or not to close with a small loss, hoping that the situation will return in your favour. And worse, to follow the tips offered on the Internet.