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Betting During March Madness May Make the Games Less Fun

Betting During March Madness May Make the Games Less Fun

03/14/11

MONDAY, March 14 (HealthDay News) -- Watching this year's NCAA March Madness basketball tournament may not be much fun for those who bet on the games, one expert suggests.

Though the current popularity of office pools, online betting sites and spoiler message boards seems to suggest that predicting the outcome of games increases enjoyment, that's not the case, according to Stephen M. Nowlis, a marketing professor at the Olin Business School at Washington University in St. Louis.

A study he co-authored found that people who make predictions about uncertain events, such as sporting events, experience significantly less enjoyment while watching the events than those who don't make predictions. The research was published in the Journal of Consumer Research in 2008.

"We thought the opposite would be true," Nowlis said. But "predictions become more aversive when the outcome of the event is highly uncertain. ...We explain our results in terms of anticipated regret."

Interestingly, picking a winner doesn't seem to help.

"One compelling finding from our studies was that, among those who made predictions, participants who were correct enjoyed the event no more than those who were incorrect," Nowlis said.

More information

The American Academy of Family Physicians explains how to know when gambling is a problem.

Copyright © 2011 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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