Crossing the Line With Sports Gambling

Mar 02, 2011, 12:01 ET from National Council on Problem Gambling

National Council on Problem Gambling

WASHINGTON, March 2, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Conversations about major sporting events like the Super Bowl and Final Four often include a discussion of picks and pools.  Wayne Allen Root, author, oddsmaker and sports handicapper, says "Sports betting is the new American pastime, because fans can do it at home, in front of their favorite piece of furniture, the TV set. It appeals to Americans' love of both money and sports, it allows for the average fan to match wits with professional gamblers, and it's a pleasant and entertaining way to spend a Saturday with friends, eating pizza, drinking beer and watching sports on TV. Even if fans don't win their bets, they get their money's worth in entertainment."


What if the individual loses more money than he can afford to?

What if the individual becomes inattentive to family matters?

What if the individual finds his physical health has been affected?

What if it affects work performance?

What if the losing creates a negative mood or depression?

Research shows that the majority of people who gamble do so socially without negative consequences. However, portraying sports gambling as simply a harmless and fun activity can be a recipe for disaster for the six to nine million Americans with gambling problems.

March 6-12, 2011 is National Problem Gambling Awareness Week, a grassroots effort to raise awareness about the consequences of gambling for the individual, the family and the community. The theme this year is Sports Gambling. Sports gambling can be a fun activity but it can be a problem for many people. It is important that sports gambling not be presented as a totally innocuous fun activity; for some it can lead to bankruptcy, divorce and even suicide if they cross that line and let their gambling get out of control. During NPGAW let us all reflect on the negative ramifications that some people may experience when gambling on sports and raise awareness. Ideas on how to raise awareness can be found at  

SOURCE National Council on Problem Gambling