Martingale Strategy Explained

by martingale strategy explained
Updated: 23/02/2021 15:23

A Complete Guide to the Martingale Strategy

The Martingale strategy is one of the most famous betting systems in the world. But what is it, how does it work, and is it legal?

For answers to all of these questions and more, read on for our complete guide to the Martingale strategy, which will tell you everything you need to know about this system.

Even though most casino games are all about luck, some people believe strategies can help them to beat the gambling sites and make a profit.

In a game like roulette where the outcome of a spin of the wheel is totally random, it is impossible to guess what is going to happen.

Betting systems can therefore be a good way to approach these gambling games, giving a structure and a purpose to them.

What is the Martingale Strategy?

The Martingale strategy is thought to date all the way back to the 18th century when it was used on gambling games in France.

Initially, the system was used for simple games such as betting on the toss of a coin. In its essence, the Martingale strategy is similar to the ‘double or quits’ maxim that is used.

The Martingale strategy involved increasing a stake by 100% after a losing bet. Should the wager be a winner, then the stake would revert to the initial amount that was used.

It can therefore be used on casino games like roulette that offer wagers where there is an almost 50-50 chance of winning.

As an example, the roulette wheel has a number of betting options that are almost 50-50 in terms of odds: red or black, odds or evens or so on.

However, critics of the Martingale system say that due to the fact it cannot be used to predict future outcomes, it is essentially gambling on a random event happening.

Those who use the Martingale system accept that this is the case and that their fate is somewhat in the hands of the gods, though.

There is also the Reverse Martingale system, which works in the opposite way, with stakes increased after a winning wager, rather than after a losing bet as in the Martingale system.

With all that in mind, how do you learn how to use the Martingale strategy at the casino?

How to use the Martingale Strategy

Among the reasons why the Martingale strategy is enduringly popular is its simplicity.

Unlike a lot of the other famous betting systems, there are no complex mathematics to get to grips with, nor are there long sequences of numbers that need to be remembered.

The Martingale system is very easy to use. First, pick the right gambling game, with roulette a prime example due to the many options there are for bets.

Red or black is a good bet for the Martingale system as the odds of winning are almost 50-50. This is not exact, of course, due to all roulette wheels having at least one green space for zero.

Indeed, some games like American roulette even have two green spaces for zero, which make the odds of either red or black coming up even worse.

This can be explained through the use of a term known as the house edge. All gambling games at the online casino have a house edge to a certain extent, as this protects their profits.

The house edge varies a lot but, for standard roulette wheel games, it runs at less than three per cent. American roulette wheels, with the two green spaces for zero, are different and their house edge is more than five per cent, so they should be avoided when using the Martingale strategy.

Using the Martingale system involves selecting a realistic starting stake. This might be £10, for example, which might sound low but offers lots of room for manoeuvre for future bets.

Place a £10 wager on either red or black. If it wins, place another £10 wager on the same bet. In the event that the first bet loses, double the stake to £20 and place the same wager again.

The pattern continues in the same way. So if the first five bets all lost – at stakes of £10, £20, £40, £80 and then £160 – then the next wager in the sequence would have to be £320.

The idea is that all losing streaks will eventually come to an end, writing off any losses that were sustained during the run.

However, this essentially means the very essence of the Martingale strategy is to chase losses, which is usually one of the things to avoid when betting.

Be aware that land-based casinos often have strict table limits in force, which can get in the way of people who are using the Martingale strategy for a gambling game such as roulette.

Using the strategy at an online casino might therefore be a better option, but what are some of the top pros and cons of the Martingale strategy? Let’s take a look at those next.

Pros of the Martingale Strategy

  • A handy way for beginners to get used to casino games like roulette
  • Proven to result in solid short-term wins for the majority of players
  • Very easy to learn and use for newcomers to playing at the casino
  • Can be used at both land-based casinos and new online casino sites

Cons of the Martingale strategy

  • Requires an unlimited bankroll to be able to cover long losing streaks
  • Even online casinos have betting limits in place for certain gambling games
  • No firm guarantee that a losing streak will ever come to an end with a win
  • Very large bets may need to be placed in order to recover prior losses

Martingale Strategy FAQs

Does the Martingale strategy work?

Many people who play casino games such as roulette swear by the Martingale strategy.

But while some have had success with it, others have found that it is a very risky approach with the potential to rack up large losses if a bad run happens.

Given an unlimited bankroll and plenty of time to play casino games, there is no reason why anyone should lose cash with the Martingale system, though.

Like any betting system, the Martingale strategy depends on players being able to pick the right time to walk away from the game and bank any profits they have been able to make with it

Is the Martingale strategy legal?

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