Hedging is a term used in betting circles, which is where you bet more than one outcome in a market, to reduce your potential losses. We’re going to explore the topic of hedge betting.
You may have heard the phrase ‘hedge your bets’ before. So what does hedge your bets mean?
When you hedge a bet, you are placing an additional wager, to restrict your potential losses in a betting market. You will already have placed a bet in the market and then you place another, in case the first bet is not successful.
This is a simple explanation and there is a lot more to the art of hedging through fixed odds betting sites than meets the eye. Read on to find out more.
To further explain what does hedging a bet mean, let’s break down the process into easy steps.
You now have two bets in the same market. The idea is to have balance what you stake with the betting odds, so that you will win big if the first bet comes in, while if the second bet wins instead, you will maybe break even, or just make a small profit.
If you are certain of the result of a betting market, you should not hedge the bet. Simply place a wager and have faith that it will come in.
The moment to hedge a bet, is when you have some doubt about the outcome. You may think that one result is the most likely outcome in the market, but have a worry that another selection will prove to be the winner.
In that instance you can hedge your bets meaning that you place wagers on both outcomes. As we said before, you have to balance the staking with the odds, to create the desired effect if one of your selections win. You may choose to try to get roughly the same amount of winnings, regardless if which of the selections wins. Or, perhaps more commonly when hedging, you weight it so that one selection will win you a higher amount and the second selection will merely get your stake back.
So far we’ve talked about hedging a bet, prior to the event starting. The bettor decides that they want to hedge and places two bets, before the action gets going. With live betting, punters will often place a bet before a contest starts, or early on and only later becomes concerned about the outcome and decides to place a second bet, to hedge.
The advent of hedging a bet has become much easier with live betting and there are features now available such as Cash Out and laying a bet at a betting exchange, which make the general concept even easier.
When you place a bet, you put your stake at risk. If you place a £10 bet at 2/1, the potential reward is £20 in winnings, plus the return of your £10 stake. The risk is that you lose the £10 stake.
When you hedge a bet, you place another wager in the market, to reduce the potential risk. Say that your 2/1 shot is in a horse racing event. The other horse that you like in the race is priced at 10/1.
You could place a £10 bet at 2/1 and then a hedging bet of £1 at 10/1. If the 2/1 horse won, your total returns would be £30, which is £20 winnings plus your £10 stake. From that total you would minus your losing £1 stake from the 10/1 bet, giving you a total return of £29, of which £19 would be profit.
If the horse priced at 10/1 won, you would win £10 plus get your £1 stake back. From that total you would deduct the £10 stake from the 2/1 horse. So you would have broken even. Your hedge bet had provided winnings that has covered your stake on the losing bet and the stake on your hedge bet has been returned to you.
The example that we gave above is quite simple to work out in your head, but some hedge bets can be more complicated. That’s where a hedge bet calculator can be useful.
With a hedge calculator you can work out your potential winnings from both your initial wager and then the hedge bet, in an instant. That can be a huge help when it comes to balancing the two wagers.
As we’ve discussed, you can choose to place a hedge bet that merely offers protection to your stake, or look to place one that will deliver profits with either selection winning. Whatever your aim, you may need to play around with different staking options before you settle on your desired aim. With a hedge betting calculator, the hard work is taken out of this task.
The advent of betting exchanges such as Betfair, made it much easier to hedge a bet. With traditional fixed odds bookmakers, to hedge a wager you had to place separate bets on selections to win, while carefully balancing your staking.
With a betting exchange, there is not just the option of backing a selection to win, but also lay betting. When you lay a bet, you are effectively acting as a bookmaker. You are offering odds on a selection to lose and the exchange pairs your lay bet with punters that are backing that selection to win.
If you back a selection to win and then can lay the same selection at a lower price, you are hedging you bet. Based on the odds difference and the staking, you can hedge bets meaning that you can enjoy a no-risk bet where your stake is protected, or even create a situation where you win money regardless of the result.
You can sometimes achieve this on a betting exchange before a market goes live, if the prices shift in the right direction. It is perhaps more common, to find such opportunities when you place a bet before the action starts and they lay it off, in-play.
So far, in our examination of what is hedging a bet, we haven’t really explored the negatives. We think that the advantages of hedge betting outweigh the drawbacks, but here are both sides of the coin, as we see them.
You have now learned just about all there is to know about hedging bets meaning that you could be ready to place some yourself. Here are some hedge betting strategies to follow, that will help you to be successful.
Hedging bets is a process that you can try out at all UK bookmakers. Yet the one that we would recommend above all others, when it comes to hedging a bet, is Betfair. They have a regular sportsbook product that allows you to hedge bets in the normal manner, as well as a sports betting exchange, where you can hedge with a lay bet. Few, if any other sites for hedge betting can boast these options.
A hedge bet is where you have already placed a wager on an event and you then place an additional bet, to reduce your risk.
Whether you want to just protect your stake, or try to make a profit, regardless of which of your selections wins, you will have to balance your staking with the odds. A hedging betting calculator makes this process much easier.
Yes, hedge betting is totally legal. You are simply taking advantage of the product on offer at the bookmakers.
Ante post markets can see big shifts in prices, so you can engineer a situation where you can reduce the threat of losing you stake, or even guarantee a profit. With an acca it is often easy to hedge a bet of a certain leg of a multiple, to ensure that you profit whatever the result.
Hedging a bet normally means reducing the risk from an initial wager, perhaps to protect your stake. Arbitrage betting is where you place bets on every outcome in a market, across different bookmakers, to guarantee a profit.
The expression ‘to hedge one’s bets’ dates back to the 1600s, when the word hedge was commonly used to describe an avoidance of commitment. When you hedge a bet, you are not just committing to one wager, as you place an additional bet to reduce your risk.
As gambling strategies go, an emotional hedge is where you bet against a team you have a personal preference for or support. It doesn’t require multiple betting options or a hedge wager against an existing one. You simply either get thejoy of the team you follow winning or the potential profits of the opposition that you have backed.