And just as the teams’ coaches are painstakingly fine-tuning their strategies, sports bettors should also make a plan before placing any bets.
A new survey from the Responsible Gambling Council (RGC) paints a picture of what we can expect in Ontario when it comes to Super Bowl betting. This study finds that more than four-in-ten sports bettors across the province will lay their money down on the big game.
While the Super Bowl is exciting to watch, there are risks associated with sports betting, particularly for younger bettors, as our survey revealed.
Forty-eight per cent of Torontonians believe their sports knowledge gives them an edge. This widespread belief can lead to overconfidence and cause some to think they can influence the outcome of the game. In fact, the survey finds 38 per cent of Ontario adults think their knowledge provides an advantage in predicting who will win. Who is most at risk of believing this? 18 to 34 year olds (48 per cent) and male (46 per cent). This group also bets more regularly and in higher amounts.
Sports bettors aged 18 to 34 across Ontario are also significantly more susceptible to being influenced by friends and family when betting on sports, with 72 per cent of bettors in this cohort saying their bets have been impacted by others.
The good news emerging from our survey is 90 per cent of Ontarians and 86 per cent of Torontonians betting on the Super Bowl will use at least one strategy to manage their gambling risk. Just over half of sports bettors across Ontario and in Toronto will stay within a pre-set betting limit and four-in-ten indicate they always view sports betting as entertainment, not as a way to win money.
The fact that a substantial majority have a plan is great news. However, the risks should never be underestimated.
Knowing the risks and having a plan to protect yourself are essential to having fun and enjoying the game.
Here are some RGC tips for safer online sports betting:
- Pre-set betting limits and stay within your budget
- Only gamble with money you can afford to lose – never borrow money or use money intended for necessities, like rent, the mortgage or food
- Limit your alcohol and/or cannabis intake
- Never chase losses by trying to win back what you’ve lost
- Don’t bet if you are upset or stressed
- View sports betting as entertainment, not a way to make money
- And remember there is no way to predict the outcome of the game
To learn how to keep your play safer visit PlanBeforeYouPlay.ca. If you or someone you know has concerns about your gambling, there is free and confidential help available 24/7. Call ConnexOntario at 1-866-531-2600.
Shelley White is CEO of the Responsible Gambling Council, an independent non-profit organization dedicated to problem gambling prevention.
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