Women’s Sports Betting 101

Sport is for everyone. No matter who you are, there’s a game to be played – it’s just a matter of opportunity. Organized sports (professional leagues and tours, the Olympics, etc.) haven’t always provided that opportunity, but with each passing year, more and more women are getting the chance to play at the highest levels. As a result, women’s sports betting has never been bigger. Let’s take a look at what’s available throughout the year at Bovada Sportsbook.

Women’s Tennis Betting

Tennis has been around in some form since the Middle Ages, and it was one of the first sports where women rose to prominence – women like Suzanne Lenglen, who won five straight Wimbledon titles between 1919 and 1923, and another in 1925. Tennis was a largely amateur sport at the time; the professional tours Lenglen went on after “retiring” were the inspiration for today’s top governing bodies, including the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA), which was founded in 1973 by Billie Jean King, herself a six-time champion at Wimbledon.

Today, WTA betting is one of the most popular items on the Bovada Sportsbook menu. Serena Williams is still the most celebrated woman in tennis, but now that she’s in the twilight of her career, a new crop of future stars has emerged. Ashleigh Barty is fresh off her first Wimbledon title; Naomi Osaka has won twice at the Australian Open, and twice more at the US Open.


Basketball became the first recognized women’s team sport in 1892, when Senda Berenson taught the recently invented game to her students at Smith College in Massachusetts. The first viable professional women’s league didn’t come around until 1996, when the National Basketball Association (NBA) launched its female counterpart, the WNBA. This league now features 12 teams, and has produced star players such as Sheryl Swoopes, Lisa Leslie, Diana Taurasi and Sue Bird. WNBA betting is busiest from May to September during the regular season, but you can also find WNBA futures odds at Bovada during the offseason.

Women’s College Basketball Odds

Unlike the professional version, college basketball has been around for well over a century; the first intercollegiate women’s game was in 1896, between Stanford and UC-Berkeley. The sheer number of teams in Division I makes college hoops one of the biggest draws in women’s sports betting, and it should get even bigger now that the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) is starting to allow students to earn money for their efforts. The women’s Division I season runs parallel to the men’s, from November to April. Stanford are the defending champions, while Connecticut hold the record with 11 titles since the first D1 tournament was held in 1982.

Women’s MMA/UFC Odds

Mixed martial arts is one of the oldest sports there is, but it wasn’t until 1993 that the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) was born – and it would take another 19 years before they signed their first female fighter, Ronda Rousey. The rest is history: Rousey became the promotion’s biggest attraction, regularly featuring at the top of the bill ahead of her male colleagues. Her popularity allowed the UFC to expand its women’s roster from one to four weight divisions. Current top star Amanda Nunes holds the titles in two of those divisions, Bantamweight and Featherweight. With weekly bouts to look forward to, there’s plenty of women’s UFC odds to sink your teeth into.

Women’s Olympic Odds

Only men were allowed to compete for medals when the first modern Olympic Games were held in Athens in 1896. Four years later in Paris, women’s sports were added: tennis, golf, sailing, and croquet. The list of sports has grown over the years, although croquet is no longer among them. The Tokyo Games were also the first Olympics to allow openly trans women to compete.

Olympics betting at Bovada isn’t just about the Summer Games – there’s also the Winter Games, which began in 1924 in Chamonix, France. The Winter Games used to be held the same year as the quadrennial Summer Games, but that was changed in 1994 so that they’d alternate every two years; the next Winter Games will be held in Beijing in February 2022.

Historically, it’s been gymnastics (Nadia Comaneci, Mary Lou Retton, Simone Biles) and figure skating (Sonja Henie, Dorothy Hamill, Katarina Witt) that have made Olympic stars out of their female performers, with some help from swimming (Janet Evans) and athletics (Florence Griffith-Joyner). Team sports are becoming more popular, though. The US women’s national soccer and hockey teams regularly win the gold now, turning players like Megan Rapinoe and Hilary Knight into household names.

Other Women’s Odds Available

In addition to the competitions mentioned above, women’s sports betting at Bovada includes the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA), international and league volleyball (both indoor and beach versions), and table tennis. Women also compete alongside men in auto racing and horse racing, although in fairly small numbers for now. On top of that, several professional women’s leagues are just starting to gain traction, led by the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) and National Women’s Hockey League (NWHL).

For even more women’s odds, check out the Entertainment section at Bovada Sportsbook, where you can find everything from Dancing With the Stars to the annual Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest – where Michelle Lesco recently ate 30.75 hot dogs in 10 minutes. And don’t forget about our Politics betting, where at press time, Kamala Harris is the +400 favorite to win the 2024 US Presidential Election.

In time, we hope to feature even more women’s (and co-ed) sports here at Bovada. The more games there are to play, the more games we’ll have to bet on. In the meantime, keep an eye on our odds page for the latest lines, and enjoy all the sports we have on our betting menu.