The Paroli System – Is It Effective for Sports Betting?
Whether you’re a seasoned pro or just a recreational sports bettor, it pays to get familiar with a handful of betting systems.
Some of these strategies have been around for centuries, while new systems seem to pop up every year. Some are simple enough for a child to master, while others take a degree in advanced mathematics to fully understand.
Most betting systems focus on increasing the size of your bet every time you lose, but the Paroli system takes a slightly different approach.
Introducing the Paroli System
The Paroli system is a form of positive betting progression. It’s most commonly used in games like Roulette and Blackjack, but it can also applied to sports betting – as long as you’re choosing wagers with approximately 50/50 odds.
Unlike the Martingale system, which requires you to double your bet after a loss, Paroli has you double each wager after a win until three straight victories are achieved. At that point, you bank your profit and return to your original stake. Anytime you lose a bet, you immediately return to your original stake – this way you’ll never encounter big losses due to progressions.
For example, let’s assume your bankroll is flush and your original stake equals $100. Using the Paroli system, you would start by placing a $100 bet. If you win that bet you would proceed to risk $200 on your next wager. Should you also win that bet, you would then up your bet to $400 for your final wager.
Regardless of the result of that third wager, you return to your original stake for your fourth bet. In this scenario, you either finish with a $700 profit by winning three straight bets, or you lose your original $100 stake if the third bet winds up being a loser.
It’s important to note that you never increase the size of your wager after a loss. Whether the losing bet succeeded another loss or multiple victories. Following each loss or three straight wins, your next bet is always the same as your original stake.
Where Did the Paroli System Come From?
The Paroli system is derived from the Latin term “par,” which translates to “one that is equal.” It is unclear when exactly the system was first created, however the most popular belief is that it originated in the 16th century.
Some believe that Blaise Pascal, the French inventor of roulette, came up with the idea for Paroli. In that case, the system would have only been around since the 18th century.
Key Considerations When Using Paroli for Sports Betting
The first thing you need to do before deploying the Paroli system is to choose your original stake. Using a consistent betting unit size is crucial for the system to work as intended. This is the amount of money you’ll risk at the start of each betting cycle.
There is no concrete rule on how much this should be, but if you’re trying bet sports seriously, your unit size should be somewhere between 2-3% of your bankroll. If your bankroll is $5,000, your original stake would between $100 and $150 depending on the percentage you choose.
It’s imperative to choose bets that offer as close to 50/50 odds as you can find.
If using this system, it’s imperative that you choose bets that offer as close to 50/50 odds as you can find. The logic behind Paroli is that you double your bet after each win, but that you never increase the size of your original stake. Following wins, you’re doubling the size of your wager with house money, so if you’re betting a -400 favorite on the money line, your return won’t be great enough to allow you to follow the system properly. For that reason, you need to bet lines (or props) that are as close to even money as possible.
Pros and Cons of the Paroli System
The best part of the Paroli system is that it’s a great way to practice disciplined bankroll management. If you follow the system exactly, you’ll never get burned chasing losses and you’ll never bet too big when you think you’re invincible thanks to the hot-hand fallacy.
It’s one of, if not the easiest betting systems to learn. Even bettors with no previous experience will have no problem mastering Paroli.
Overall, the Paroli system provides a measured, conservative approach that’s great for those learning the ropes or patient enough for sustained incremental growth. You’ll never win outrageous amounts of money, but you’ll also never go broke quickly. Even if you do encounter a cold streak, the losses will do minimal damage to your bankroll. Unlike other progression systems, the probability of going bust following Paroli is low.
On the other hand, the entire success of the system relies on you winning three bets in a row. Winning three consecutive wagers at even odds is just as likely as losing three consecutive wagers. The system won’t statistically improve your chances of being a long term winner. There’s no way to know how long it will take to reel off three straight winning bets. You will need to be prepared for prolonged spells of small losses.
Use Paroli if You’re Risk Averse
If your tolerance for risk is low and you’re not looking for a get rich quick scheme, then the Paroli system may be for you. The strategy will not guarantee you a profit, but it will keep you in the game longer than almost any other betting system. It will minimize your losses when you run cold, and maximize your wins when you go on a mini-heater.
Looking for More Betting Systems and Strategic Advice?
Once you’ve moved beyond the basics, it’s worth taking some time to experiment with a few different betting systems to see what works best for you. Exploring our sports betting strategy section is a great place to start.
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