Sports Betting Glossary & Terms All Beginner Gamblers Should Know


Sports betting is not difficult, but if you try to delve into the topic, you will realize that the terms can be quite difficult to understand. Therefore, today we will not procrastinate, but we will help you learn them faster and know what happens during sporting events.

Keep in mind that there is no particular order of the terms in this list:

Action – everything you do during betting, including creating a ticket, investing money, and betting on a specific activity.

Added game – these are actually the sequels that are most often found in European football. If the match ends with an uncertain result, it is extended according to the needs of the organizer. Sometimes that result is relevant, but most often it is only the one in the regular part of the match.

Arbitrage – a style of betting that covers all possible outcomes of the game. It’s not very popular, but you will often come across the term, so it’s good to know what’s actually going on.

ATS – This is abbreviated from Against The Spread odds and occurs when the chances of an outcome are equal, no matter what it may be.

Bad beat – this is a situation where you lose a bet, but quite unexpectedly.

Bankroll – this is the budget allotted to you for betting.

Bookie / Bookmaker – an organization or company that organizes sports betting.

Banker – betting that has almost a full chance of being fulfilled.

Bankroll management – all the activities that the bettor undertakes in order to set limits on his activities and prevent the loss of a lot of money.


Bet – any wager that occurs during betting.

Betting strategy – a method or approach used by a bookmaker to find a way to get the most out of their betting.

Closing line – the last odds, before the start of the match. Once the match starts, the odds change.

Double action – double bets related to the conjunctions “and” or “or”. They are used for those bettors who want big challenges.

Double bet – the initial bet is doubled when the bettor thinks he can use more potential.

Free bets – are common in online betting. It is in a way a sign of gratitude from the organizer of the game. Sometimes it can happen that the bet increases and the player spends less of their own money.

Edge – this term actually describes who has an advantage, ie a better chance of betting.

Exotic wager – the action of betting on unusual bets.

Expected value – a mathematical value that approximates how much profit an action can bring.

Favorite – the team or athlete who has a better chance of winning.

Drift – odds that increase after the match starts.

Draw – a draw at the end of the match.

Exposure – a predicted loss of money that every bettor has in mind when betting.

Fixed odds – unchanged odds, until the beginning of the game. These are the odds whose payments are accepted no later than half an hour before the match starts.


Form – the latest known results for a team or individual.

Handicap Betting – an action of adding points or goals, so that the profit can be realized.

Hedging – something that people who want to cause happiness do, that is, they bet on the opposite of what they did before.

Parlay – a ticket with multiple options that must be achieved to win.

Payout – the amount of money received after a precise bet.

Proposition (prop) bet – betting on a specific event in the game, for example, who will score first or how the half will end.

Return – the amount of money returned to the player after a certain period of betting.

Sharp – an experienced and skilled bettor.

Single – a ticket that has only one event on it.

Sportsbook – a newsletter or almanac, or betting booklet.

Special – an attempt to predict what will happen in the game first.

Half-time bet – betting strictly on the halftime result. Can be used only for the first or only the second half.

Handle – the total amount of money intended for one ticket.

Layoff – a way to reduce the risk of large losses.

Live betting – betting at different stages of the match, according to the change of the odds.

No action – when, for various reasons, bookmakers expel a match from the betting cycle.

Why is it important to know these terms?


Sports betting is not complicated, but there may be too many characteristic terms that are not understood by everyone. Even in this glossary, which is certainly not complete, there are terms with similar meanings or ones that sound similar but the meanings are opposite.

This can be really confusing for beginners, but also for the experienced because this dictionary is constantly updated with new terms.

The easiest way to learn to do something is to understand how it is done. That’s why it’s good to know these terms. Of course, there are many more, as sports betting is actually a set of events that may not occur over several cycles or may be repeated during each match.

Before you start betting on sports matches, we recommend that you first focus on the theoretical part, which is important to understand what is actually happening. And of course, remember the terms like odds, wager, bet, free bets, live betting, etc, because you will always come across them.

Finally, we recommend that you learn well what bankroll management is. If you are wondering why we say this, the reason is that all good strategies are based exactly on it and on the principles of equitable spending of money intended for any kind of gambling.


We can only say and suggest to be very smart when betting, even on your favorite sports and teams. This is a nice way to entertain yourself, but it’s practically gambling, so you must control every step you take.