Martingale betting explained – How does it Work?

The Martingale Strategy, the term might be familiar for some bettors, while others could be using it subconsciously. It is one of the common strategies used in sports betting. 

Once you enter the betting world, having a system in place is essential. Some can be easy to maneuver. Others can be intricate and even take years to adapt. However, signing up to any betting exchange site without any strategy in the disposal will fail. 

So, today we will discuss Martingale Strategy, how it works, pros and cons of using the technique. And the final question will you win with this knowledge in hand? 

What is the Martingale Strategy?

The word first came in existence from a London Casino owner, John Henry Martindale. It is believed the John used the strategy initially in the 1700s. Although the name seems to have lost in translation as Martindale became Martingale.

The execution of this technique is straightforward. Moreover, almost all players have come up with the idea once in their gambling pursuit. In simple words, it means to double the losing bets until you win. 

For example, you bet $15 on any marquee event, and you win. Now keeping that $105 aside. Let’s say you go again with the same wager of $10. Unfortunately, suppose you lose the bet. In the next bet, you will increase the bet to $20 and double the amount unless you win the bet. 

Now, after you win, you keep aside the payout and start all over again with the $10 bet. 

Gambler’s Fallacy.

While using this strategy, one can fail to recognize that every wager is different and separate from the next step. For example, a gambler loses three times in a row, S/he may think they possibly won’t lose the fourth time. This thought right here can be your culprit. 

It’s simple, suppose you bet black on a roulette wheel three times in a row. Moreover, the  odds of the ball landing on the black or red the fourth time is still 49 % or 47.4 (American Roulette). Regardless of your wagers, the winning odds stay the same. Acknowledging the difference between your previous wager and proceeding one can take you a long way.

How does it work?

Let’s take an example to explain how the strategy works, including the risk and your final reward. Suppose, for this exercise. We will take the Champion’s League game. 

Your standard bet here, let’s say, starts from $50 with even money odds. Now we will use the math in an easier way to explain how the Martingale Strategy works in the actual game.

  • Game: one
    Risk: $50
    Outcome: Loss
  • Game: two
    Risk: $100
    Outcome: Loss
  • Game: three
    Risk: $200
    Outcome: Loss
  • Game: four
    Risk: $400
    Outcome: Loss
  • Game: five
    Risk: $800
    Outcome: Loss
  • Game: six
    Risk: $1600
    Outcome: Loss
  • Game: seven 
    Risk: $3200
    Outcome: Win

Final Profit: $50

The Martingale strategy works here because the player was able to accumulate his initial bet of $50. Nonetheless, the gambler had to risk, $3200 to make profit of $50.

Pros and Cons of the Martingale Strategy


The strategy is simple to employ. You don’t need to do any further calculation besides doubling your bet. In the situation where a player has infinite bankroll, and the exchange website or casino has no wagering limits. The technique should always work and prove to be persistently profitable. Presumably, you might end up losing all your bets for the rest of your life. However, that is mathematically impossible.


These scenarios are only possible if you have a massive bankroll to support your loss once it gets into thousands. Generally speaking, most gamblers are only looking to make modest profits. Hence, the strategy might be overwhelming. 

Although losing continuously five to seven streaks may sound absurd. But seasoned punters are well aware of the inevitable loss. Thus, to make any profit using the Martingale Strategy, a player needs to stay ready with an impressive backup to withstand the outcome. 

Furthermore, many casinos or sportsbooks, virtual or real, have wagering limits. Which automatically cuts the technique off. 

Martingale System Variations

Mini Martingale System

In this variation, a gambler usually limits their double bets to avoid making enormous loss over time.

Reverse Martingale System

Instead of doubling down the loss, in this variation, you double down your profit stake. The key here is knowing when to stop. A single loss can mean an overall drop in profit. Utilizing this variation in three to four games makes more sense than going over the top.

Grand Martingale

The principle is similar to the Martingale Strategy. However, the twist here is you make an additional bet after each loss. Suppose you lose three hands in a row; winning the fourth can bring you more profit than the initial strategy. 

Will I win?

Finally, yes, if you decide to wager small and test the water first. Although it is difficult to get rich with the Martingale Strategy, staying in the structure can steady the overall bankroll. 

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