How does the Reverse Martingale (Paroli) strategy work?

reverse martingale paroli strategy

The Reverse Martingale strategy is a variation of the famous Martingale strategy. It can be applied to all even bet casino games.

This betting strategy is often used as a roulette strategy, but can also be used on baccarat, blackjack and other table games.

The big advantage of this strategy is that you only decide to take more risk if you are in a winning streak. The danger is that you do not get a long winning streak (say win 4 or 5 or 6 times in a row).

The consequence is that you end up negative.

How does the Reverse Martingale (Paroli) beting strategy work?

With the Reverse Martingale strategy (also called the anti Martingale strategy or the Paroli strategy), you start with a stake of one unit (say $1). If you lose, you play again with a stake of $1.

If you win, you can “afford” more, take more risk and double your next stake. If you win again, you double the next stake again.

Set yourself a limit, where you decide to stop doubling. You “bank” your winnings and start the sequence again. You choose for example to stop doubling after you have won 4 times in a row.

Compare the Reverse Martingale Strategy with the popular TV quiz, the Weakest Link. There, winnings are doubled. When the next answer is wrong, everything is lost. The sequence starts again.

A participant can also “bank” the amount/profits built up. After the winnings are banked, the sequence starts again from the beginning.

When using the Reverse Martingale Strategy, you only take extra risks when you are winning

We have made calculations of 4 variants of the Reverse Martingale strategy:

  • The 3-step Reverse Martingale strategy (where winnings are banked after 3 consecutive wins)
  • The 4-step Reverse Martingale strategy (where winnings are banked after 4 consecutive wins)
  • The 5-step Reverse Martingale strategy (where winnings are banked after 5 consecutive wins)
  • The 6-step Reverse Martingale strategy (where winnings are banked after 6 consecutive wins)

An example of a winning Reverse Martingale Strategy

Example 1: Here you see when the Reverse Martingale strategy works in your advantage.

You always play Black. You start with one unit (could be $1)

  • You lose the 1st and the 2nd
  • You have a winning streak: you win rounds 3 to 6. As you have doubled your stake, you get cumulative profits of 13 after round 6.
  • You bank after 4 wins in a row (after round 6).
  • You lose rounds 7 to 10.

reverse martingale strategy

Here, you have won $9. Even, though you only got 4 Blacks and 6 times Red/Zero. The luck was that you won 4 times in a row, which uplifts your profits.

Bear in mind that a winning streak of 4 times, does not happen too often. The chance of winning 4 times in a row (in this example 4 Blacks in a row) is: (18/37)^4= 18/37*18/37*18/37*18/37= 5,6%.

Below, a table with the probability of consecutive wins:

reverse martingale strategy wins

An example where the Reverse Martingale Strategy fails

Example 2: Here you see a case where the Reverse Martingale strategy does not yield profits.

You always bet on Black. You start with one unit (could be $1)

  • You lose the 1st and the 2nd
  • You have a winning streak: you win rounds 3 to 5.
  • You double your stake for round 6, which you lose.
  • You lose round 7. You win round 8.
  • You double your stake for round 9, which you lose.
  • You win round 10.

reverse martingale strategy fails

Here you end up with a negative balance of 3 units (-$3), even though you have won 5 times and lost 5 times. As the winning streak was not long enough, you end up losing.

Would you have banked after 3 wins (instead of 4 wins), then you would have had a cumulative profit of 4. Banking after 3, 4, 5, 6 (or even more) consecutive wins matters.

If you are more of a risk taker, you could decide to bank after 4, 5 or even 6 consecutive wins.

Otherwise, you may choose to bank after 2 or 3 straight wins.