Sports betting generated 230% more money in 2021 than it did in 2020, which shows a serious increase in interest. Chances are, you’ve got buddies who have already given things like online sports betting a shot–and maybe even won some dough.

If you’re still on the fence about online sports betting, we can understand why. There are a lot of myths floating around that can scare off first-time sports bettors, regardless of their knowledge or passion for professional sports.

The good news is that these myths are just that: myths. We’re here to give you the truth behind so many of the mistruths you’ve probably heard about online sports betting.

Read on as we debunk myth after myth so that you can make a more informed decision about online sports betting.

Myth 1: Online Sports Betting Isn’t Legal

Before 2018, sports betting was a murky subject in the US. Several states up until that point had fought and lost the battle to legalize sports betting.

Now, more than half of the states have legalized in-person betting. The number of states that allow online sports batting is smaller but expected to grow. Currently, online sports betting is legal in Pennsylvania, Nevada, New Jersey, West Virginia, Rhode Island, Iowa, Oregon, Indiana, New Hampshire, Illinois, Michigan, Colorado, Tennessee, and Washington DC.

Myth 2: Online Sports Betting Isn’t Safe

Unfortunately, this is a case of a few bad seeds. It is possible to come across online betting sites that are not legal or safe to use.

That being said, there are plenty of places to practice online sports betting without any risk to your personal information. The trick is to make sure that you vet your websites before using them. A little bit of research will go a long way.

Myth 3: You’ll Never Win Money from the Gambling Industry

People who have never gambled before (or gambled and lost) love to say that you can’t win money by placing a bet. The theory is that the odds are rigged, the books are stacked against you, and that the “house” (or website) always wins.

The truth is that you’re bound to lose a little money here and there. However, by balancing low-odds and high-odds bets, learning a thing or two about numbers and calculations, and betting with caution, you are going to win money at some point.

Myth 4: Only Bookmakers Know How to Win a Bet

Maybe you know people who have more luck with bookmakers (ie “bookies”) than placing bets on their own. This isn’t because bookmakers are always right and individual bettors are always wrong. It’s because bookmakers know a thing or two about making good predictions and betting on reliable odds.

At the end of the day, even the best online bookie can make mistakes just like you can. On the flip side, you can place winning bets just like a bookie can. Know your strengths and learn the game.

Myth 5: Tipsters Can Point You in the Right Direction

So you’ve decided to dive in with the best online sportsbook you can find. Is there a way to place a surefire bet? If someone is telling you that the answer is yes, run.

There are people out there who claim to be “tipsters.” They make false promises, claiming that they have insider information.

The truth is that this isn’t the stock market and there’s no insider information to be found. The players will win or they’ll lose and contrary to alluring myths, no one is throwing the game for the sake of a bet. Don’t listen to tipsters, especially if they want your money or want you to risk it all.

Myth 6: Knowing the Game Means Knowing a Good Bet

Yes, many of the people who participate in online sports betting are big fans of the game. They place bets because it ups the ante, increasing the tension and making their viewership more interactive. However, that doesn’t mean that a huge sports fan is guaranteed to place a good bet.

As we’ve mentioned already, it’s important to understand the math behind it all. No, you don’t have to be a math whiz to win a bet. However, you’re going to want to pair your knowledge of the sport with your knowledge of gambling to get the most out of online sports betting.

Myth 7: You Can Reduce All Risk in Sports Betting

It’s misleading to believe that there’s no way to win money with online sports betting. However, it’s also misleading to believe that you can somehow learn to reduce all risks in any form of gambling. In other words, you’ll never place a bet that’s guaranteed to win.

One of the most important things to remember in online sports betting is that luck is always a factor. Protect your finances by only placing bets you can afford to lose. Winning week after week is called a lucky streak for a reason–the tides can change at any point.

If you do find that you’re risking more than you can afford, it may be time to back off a bit. At the end of the day, your financial well-being is more important than the thrill of the game.

Get in on the Action With Online Sports Betting

Have you considered giving online sports betting a shot but find yourself hesitating? If so, you’ve probably bought into some of the myths we’ve talked about today. Know the truth about sports betting and make your choices and your wagers from a place of accurate information.

You’re a careful person and you like to learn the facts before making a choice. Take a look around to find out more about everything from health to travel to money and broaden your areas of expertise.