It can be one of the most rewarding experiences in your life to build a relationship with your grandchildren, nieces, or nephews. This bond can be strengthened by sharing your passion for fishing.
To instill a love for fishing in the next generation takes more than inviting them on a trip. Many experienced anglers make basic mistakes when introducing children to the sport.
We’ll be looking at the top tips for fishing with children today.
It is a huge responsibility to take a young angler out on the water.
A portable floatation device, especially for children younger than 5 years old, is a must-have, even when you are fishing from the shore.
You should also be aware of other dangers such as too much sun or bumps and bruises.
It would be great to have a PFD, sunscreen, and a cap.
Hooks are obviously a top concern for possible injuries. If you have more than one angler, ensure that they are all separated far enough so that they don’t get in the way with their hooks and rods!
Sunscreen, proper clothing, sunglasses, and a fishing hat are all essentials. Don’t forget to have plenty of water. Children can quickly become dehydrated, so it’s important to be on the lookout for this.
A basic first-aid kit and bug repellant are also good to have.
The Fish are the Fish, not the Kids.
You can expect disaster if you make this trip an exact duplicate of your normal day on the water with the addition of children.
This monster is still with me!
Although it may sound harsh, this is a story that I have heard many times. A well-intentioned angler invites his young relative to fish with him for the day. However, the focus is on the fishing, not the relative.
If you want your child to love fishing, and if you want to instill a passion for fishing in them, then you should focus on the kid, and not the fish.
You might not want to be the only one fishing, so it is important to accept that. Your best option is to help, teach, and support others.
You can help your child learn casting by focusing your attention on him or her, instead of ignoring signs of frustration, or reacting to a problem after it has escalated.
You will be rewarded for your patience with a new fishing buddy and greater chances of forging a strong, healthy relationship in the future.
Take snacks with you for the very little ones
Although children don’t have as much attention span as adults, it is easy to forget this when we’re so used to swimming in the morning and staying there all day.
They don’t have the mental or physical endurance to do that!
He is really focused right now.
Plan a shorter trip that lasts no more than an hour. For first-timers or younger children, shorter trips are more suitable. Do not make it an exciting, pre-dawn adventure. Instead, think about a two-hour excursion that includes more than fishing.
This may sound counterproductive but I am serious.
Even if they catch some fish, your little buddy might lose interest in fishing. You’ll notice the signs if you keep an eye on your little buddy and follow our second tip. You might be lucky enough to see the rod tip or bobber bite signs, but it’s unlikely.
If you notice fidgeting, loss of interest, or other signs, it is time to have a snack, change pace or do something else. You might consider exploring the shore or wading into the shallows for a few moments.
Children are more interested in almost everything than you, even though your primary interest may be the fish. Combining that with their limited attention span and curiosity, you can see the importance of “fishing” in a whole new light.
For young anglers, this is considered “fishing” if they lose interest in their reel and rod.
You must be prepared if your young angler loses interest and is unable to sit still with their rod.
Stale bread to attract minnows or ducks, a fine net for scooping small fish out of the water, and a magnifying lens to inspect insects. Think about other activities that you can do together near the water.
Children can tackle
Children have short arms and small hands, so giving a child your favorite ultralight is probably not the best thing to do.
To maximize the enjoyment, invest in a tackle that is kid-sized
Instead, buy quality tackle that is sized for them. This doesn’t include the cheap toy rods and reel combos with princesses or superheroes stickers.
We’ve reviewed some of the best fishing rods and reel combinations for children: The Best Fishing Rods For Kids: Great Options Reviewed
Give an example
It’s the fact that our children will follow our example.
You’ll help your next generation succeed by emphasizing that littering is not acceptable.
You want to do it right, so get your friend involved.
Ask your friends and family to help you pick up litter.
Your little angler can learn how to release a fish. If they are too young, you can still encourage them to participate. Let them touch the fish gently while you hold it. Encourage questions and show them how you can revive a sick fish.
Safety is important. Emphasize basic safety measures like proper clothing and personal flotation devices. You won’t convince your children to use these devices if they don’t have them.
You can introduce young anglers and keep them hooked for life with a little planning. You will be rewarded with a deeper relationship, a new fishing buddy, and the joy of seeing a child catch their favorite fish.