How to help your kids enjoy fishing?
Taking your children fishing can be fun for all the family, and for many is an essential rite of passage.
The most avid of anglers might want their children to experience this at an early age, but many are unsure of where and when to start.
This article will cover the basics, from 'when is the best age for a child to start fishing', to 'hat is the best fishing gear for kids'.
By following the tips given in this article, you shouldn't put them off fishing for life because of their first experience.
So, just go and have some fun together ...
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What is the right age to take a child fishing?
Children can start fishing at any age, although it helps if they can hold a rod, so they should probably be four years or older.
Choosing the right age for your child to start fishing will likely depend on a few factors ...
The first and most important is if they are capable of understanding the danger of water and whether or not they listen to your instructions.
You also need to make sure you will be able to observe them if you have any doubt.
Keep reading to see how you can make this experience as fun for all concerned as possible.
READ MORE: How much does sports fishing insurance cost?
How do you make fishing more comfortable and more fun for kids?
#1. The Kid is more important than the catch
This is the most important thing to remember, the first time you take a kid fishing has to be a memorable experience; catching a record-breaking pike is a secondary concern.
READ MORE: 7 Reasons Why do Fish Jump Out of the Water
#2. Let your child pick the spot
Any experienced angler knows that choosing just the right place (and best time for fishing) can be tricky. Even though you have a fair idea of where to start, turn it into a game and let your Kid pick where they want to fish. If you need to change, turn it into a learning experience.
#3. Let them pick the lure they want
Once they have chosen the 'perfect' location, the next step is to let them pick out the lure they think is appropriate, this is always fun and is another chance to teach without it turning into a classroom.
#4. What type of fish are we going to catch?
This is always an interesting discussion with your Kid. You will be amazed by the answers they are capable of coming up with. Take the opportunity to explain the different types of species you are likely to catch in the area you are in.
#5. Buy them some lures and a tackle box
This is always a good intro to the adventure, take them shopping for some lures and a tackle box. Or better still keep it as a surprise for the moment you land at the spot you are going fishing.
#6. Everything has to be a game
Kids aren't exactly renowned for their patience, try to play as many games as you can to help keep them focused on the task at hand. This will help them stay out longer and also stay out of danger.
#7 Have a break have a kit-kat
It is essential to take some time to chill, and a picnic is a must. It makes the first day out even more memorable. Picking your kids favourite foods or treats help too.
#8. Go exploring
Every Kid enjoys a good old fashioned treasure hunt. Without a doubt, if you intend to spend a day fishing, your Kid is going to get bored. Take note of the times of the day when the fish are not biting and have a plan B, to keep your Kid happy and focused.
#9 Practice makes perfect
As every angler knows, things can go wrong at many different stages of the journey. To allow for these potential issues, practice with your kids at home. This will reduce the chance of lines becoming tangled or hooks getting caught up in bad casts.
Do kids need to have a fishing license?
There is no hard and fast answer to this question; regulations differ from country to country. A general rule to follow is that children under the age of 12 don't need a fishing license, but if your child is older than this; its best to ask the local authorities for guidance.
What is the best fishing technique for fish with kids?
Here are some tips to help make your kids earliest fishing experiences as fun and memorable as possible:
Tip 1: Keep it simple
Start them out with a cane pole, a great way for kids to get introduced to fishing. You can then progress them to some spin casting gear. Best to pick something that is ultra-light.
Tip 2: The lighter, the better
Any line that is capable of taking 4-8 pounds will be more than enough. A light line will be fine too, it's unlikely your kids will be targeting any northern pikes or catfish.
Tip 3: Big Bobbers are better off in the bag
A bobber (float) is used to suspend the bait in the water and alert fishers when to set their hook. The more difficult it is to pull the bobber under the surface. A slip bobber is a good fit for kids; these are easier for them to cast and reduce the amount of line you will need at the end of the rod.
Tip 4: Sinkers will help
Adding some sinkers (weights) will help your kids line get down to the fish. Add as many weights to the end of your line until the bobber is just staying afloat. This reduces the resistance to encourage a fish to take the bait and run.
Tip 5: Small hooks work
Pick hooks sized between 6 and 10. A larger hook will not tempt fish unless they are in a frenzy. The smaller the hook, the more likely the fish are to inhale the bait. If you are teaching your child to catch and release you can use barbless hooks of snip the line as close as possible.
Tip 6: Big worms are a terrible idea
As much fun as it is to play with live bait as you are teaching your kids to fish. Great big infections are merely not going to work. Instead choose crickets, red worms or wax worms. The bait should be no more significant than the hook. When you're finished with the bait either bring it home for the next rip or give it to another angler. Never throw it back into the water.
Tip 7: Try to stay close to home
It is always a good idea to teach your Kid that it is possible to catch fish close to their homes. Whether you are going to fish in the local pond or down to the nearest river or stream. Wherever it is most intimate, the purpose of this exercise is to show them they can go fishing whenever they want and they don't have to travel far from home.
What is the best fishing gear for kids?
When your Kid is four or five years old, they want to learn and love trying new things.
The experiences a child has at this age stay with them for a lifetime. After a few trips, this is the ideal time to buy them their gear.
If they are showing an interest and asking to go fishing, here are the best age-appropriate rods to consider.
Ages four to five
At this age a smaller, lighter fishing rod when paired with an appropriate spin cast reel, will allow your Kid to learn to use their gear more easily. One of the most popular options is the Plusinno kids fishing pole; this is available for sale on Amazon.
Ages six to twelve
As they start to grow out of a smaller fishing rod, it is time to upgrade. As they get taller and stronger, they will want something that can cast longer and let them catch much bigger fish (like carp or grass carp). One of the best options is the Lanaak kids fishing pole; this is also available on Amazon. They might want a bigger tackle box, and they will more than likely want to start collecting their lures.
Once your Kid reaches their teenage years, they are capable of using a regular fishing reel and rod set. Depending on the type of fishing they are interested in, pick an appropriate adult size rod.
Children's earliest fishing experiences should be as fun and memorable as possible.
Remember that they will want to catch something, and take a picture of them hold their first catch.
Unfortunately, any experienced angler will tell you there is no guarantee of this happening. But if you follow the step we gave above, it will increase their level of success. But you can make the trip fun just by teaching them to cast accurately to get the ball rolling.
A kid is not going to understand that fishing requires patience; this is not something they are born with. Keeping their attention for long periods at a young age isn't going to happen, so be prepared to use as many different activities as possible.
These activities can slowly be phased out as your Kid becomes more focused on the task at hand.
These trips are all about building memories that your kids will have for a lifetime.