Also referred to as “Reverse Martingale” or “Anti-Martingale,” the Paroli Betting System is a form of positive betting progression. Unlike the Martingale Betting System, which requires doubling up after a loss, Paroli has the player do the exact opposite—doubling up after a win. This strategy has been employed since the 16th century, when it was a popular way of wagering on the Italian card game known as “Basset.”
Many players believe that positive progressions based on increasing wagers following wins are more stable than negative ones based on losses, most of which are highly dependent upon the size of a player’s bankroll for success. Also, table limits make no difference whatsoever to the positive progression player. When losses occur, they tend to be gradual and much less impactful.
The objective of the Paroli Betting System is to win a certain number of wagers in a row, typically three or possibly four. The progression begins by wagering one unit. If the bet loses, one unit is wagered again. The player continues wagering just one unit until a win is obtained.
After a win, the player “doubles up”—increasing the amount of the next bet by a factor of two. If, for example, the winning wager was £1, the next bet should be doubled to £2. Should this bet lose, the player would return to betting one unit (£1).
On the other hand, if the £2 bet wins, the next wager would be doubled again—in this case, to £4. If it loses, the player again returns to wagering just one unit (£1). But if it wins, the player must make a decision to take the profits or continue the progression by doubling up again to £8.
The vast majority of Paroli Betting System players limit their series to three consecutive wins, and then they return to betting one unit. Those who extend the progression by doubling again and trying for four wins may argue that the odds of succeeding on the next bet are roughly the same at any other point during play, so there is no mathematical reason to discontinue doubling after three wins instead of after four.
With this in mind, the player should make a commitment beforehand as to how many wins will be required before claiming the profits and starting the progression anew. Personal preference comes into play. Some players are naturally more aggressive than others. However, the decision may be guided by conditions at the time of play, especially in games like Blackjack where the status of the deck sometimes favours the player as opposed to the House.
In most cases, the Paroli Betting System is used for “even money” wagers, including Player or Banker bets at Baccarat, Odd or Even bets at Roulette, and Pass or Don’t Pass bets at Craps. When applied to Blackjack or sporting events that feature “vigorish” (the House commission), a few adjustments may be needed.
A very popular modification of the Paroli Betting System is called the 1-3-2-6 progression. Instead of doubling after a win each time, the player triples the initial wager after the first win, doubles it after the second and bets 6X the original wager following a third win. This adds some extra risk to the second bet, but it also allows some profit to be taken if only two wins in a row occur.