What is the Martingale system?
The Martingale system is a very simple betting strategy based on doubling the bet if you lose, to win back your money. If you lose your first game, then double your second bet. If you lose your second game, then double the bet again. This doubling will continue until you finally win your game and get back all your original lost bet. After a win, you will return to the original bet. The simplicity of the strategy means that many betting beginners use the Martingale system.
Theoretically, the Martingale strategy could be successful if you have unlimited money and a casino or betting company that would accept unrestricted bets. In reality, the Martingale system is an extremely risky strategy.
Theoretically, the Martingale strategy could be successful if you have unlimited money and a casino or betting company that would accept unrestricted bets. In reality, the Martingale system is an extremely risky strategy. Once a series of losses occur, which they will sooner or later, regardless of how good you are, it will most likely spell bankruptcy for you and your betting account. The ability to overestimate yourself and underestimate the risk for long periods of losses lies behind many beginners overconfident belief in the Martingale system.
How does the Martingale system work?
The Martingale system is built on the theory mentioned earlier that you should double your original bet for every loss until you win a game, so you have won back your losses. You begin by deciding on a starting bet, which can be, for example, 1 % of your betting account. If you have a betting account of £/€1,000 then begin with £/€1. If you win your first bet, then continue as normal with the next bet. If you lose your first bet, then increase your bet to £/€2. The important thing is that you play with the odds of at least 2.00, in order to win back your previous bet. If you lose your next bet of £/€2, then double the amount again and put down a bet of £/€4 and hope for a win.
An example of the system
For convenience sake, we will show you an example of how the Martingale system works through the premise that you start with a bet of £/€5 and only play with odds of 2.00. It is not so important to worry if we are betting on roulette or sports betting. The important thing is that the odds are at least 2.00 because that is what is needed to win back your earlier loss.
|Bet 1: £/€5||Win||+£/€5|
|Bet 2: £/€5||Win||+£/€10|
|Bet 3: £/€5||Loss||+£/€5|
|Bet 4: £/€10||Win||+£/€15|
|Bet 5: £/€5||Loss||+£/€10|
|Bet 6: £/€10||Loss||£/€0|
|Bet 7: £/€20||Loss||-£/€20|
|Bet 8: £/€40||Loss||-£/€60|
|Bet 9: £/€80||Loss||-£/€140|
|Bet 10: £/€60||Win||+£/€20|
In this example, you will end up with a £/€20 profit after 10 bets. But as you can see things can change quickly, and only on the ninth bet, you were minus £/€140 despite starting with an original bet of only £/€5. By the tenth bet, you won back all your losses with an additional £/€20 in the black.
However, your tenth place could just have likely been a loss. Never underestimate the variants within games and that losing streaks are just as, if not more common than winning streaks.
The risks with the Martingale system
If you were to use the Martingale system, you should be aware of the risks associated with it. First of all, you need to keep a close eye on your bankroll management. Secondly, you need a large betting account to cover any losses.
However, even if you have good bankroll management and a large betting account, a series of losses could empty your account. For example, if you have ten straight losses, which is not unthinkable if you are betting on games with a 50% likelihood. Ten straight losses mean that your eleventh game must consist of 1024 basic investments. This is, if started with £/€2, your eleventh bet must be £/€2,480. A bet that could be significantly higher than your entire betting account.
Often, many losses mean that your betting account is emptied and even if your account survives this long period of losses, there is still one more problem. The problem could be that the betting company does not receive your bet on the eleventh time. This means that you have no chance of winning back your lost money, even if you have a big enough betting account.
Martingale is a very easy strategy for those who want a long-term approach to your betting because the more bets you put down, the more likely you are to end up in the black. If you want to try the Martingale, despite its risks, we recommend you keep your original bets low and make sure you are aware of all the risks involved as well as know when you should stop.