What Does Chasing Steam Mean in Sports Betting?

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If you are new to sports betting, you may have heard the term “steam.” It is one of the phenomena at sportsbooks that can make or break your sports bet. Knowing when and not to chase the steam at sportsbooks is one of the effective skills in sports gambling. 

What is Steam in sports bet?

In order to understand “steam” in sports betting, we first need to understand where the word originated. Imagine you are heating a kettle on a stove. When the water reaches its boiling point, steam is released. In a similar vein, steam occurs when the betting line has reached its peak and is “hot.”

When the betting odds change abruptly in a sportsbook when bettors predominantly sports bet on one side of the line, this is considered a steam. However, you need to note that steaming odds only occur when the odds change in most sportsbooks. Odds that move suddenly at one sportsbook while the odds at another sportsbook don’t change are not regarded as steam. 

Do steaming odds indicate a good sports bet?

12BETINFO What Does Chasing Steam Mean in Sports Betting?

Steaming odds happen when bettors bet heavily on a favorite team and suddenly move to the underdog team when they showcase a surprisingly good performance. We are already aware that the trends in betting odds change quickly at sportsbooks based on what is happening in a match. This will create an unpredictable pattern in the sportsbooks, which most bettors will chase.

However, steaming odds do not always indicate an ideal bet. For instance, Liverpool (-8.5) is the clear favorite over Crystal Palace (+8.5). A betting syndicate may wager heavily on Liverpool so that the line moves to 9.5 points. Once the line moves, they will bet an even greater amount on Crystal Palace for a surefire win on your sports bet

What are the pros and cons of steam?

Just like any trend or pattern, steam also comes with its own set of pros and cons. Here are the benefits and costs of chasing steam on sportsbooks:


Using the knowledge of sharps

The main purpose of chasing steam is that you’re leaving the sports bet decision to the professionals instead of relying on your instincts. You can trust the betting experience of the sharps to lead you to huge profits.


One of the pros of chasing steam is its versatility. Unlike other betting strategies that require colossal money, you can use this method with as little money as possible. Additionally, all types of players can use this technique. 


Another clear benefit of chasing steam in sportsbooks is its sheer simplicity. This strategy involves trusting the betting professionals and reduces the need for research. 


Chasing steam at the online bookmaker also has a few negatives. Knowing these cons can help the punter take precautions and make a smart assessment of their sports bet decisions

Lack of knowledge

12BETINFO What Does Chasing Steam Mean in Sports Betting?

One clear con of chasing steam on sportsbooks is that you have no idea how and why the lines suddenly move. It will always be a mystery where the move originated or what caused it, which means you only have to rely on your blind faith. 

Account Restrictions

Just like the art of card counting and the strategy of arbitrage betting, chasing steam is in the gray area in terms of legality. Chasing steam sometimes requires multiple accounts on sportsbooks, and bookmakers don’t like them. 

It takes away the thrill

For some punters, winning is the least important, while the process of prediction is. Relying on experts when it comes to your betting decisions takes away the joy of research, analyzing teams and players, and preparation. While pre-match research may be a nuisance, getting to know the team you are betting on can also be fun. 

Chasing steam is one effective method of boosting your winnings in sports betting. Relying on trends and patterns makes you much more certain of your bets. We hope that we can help you in your future sports betting pursuits.