Fishing is a common hobby of many people around the world and many people are eager to introduce their children to fishing the minute they feel they are able to fish. Fishing is a lesson in patience for children and a structured way to teach them a sport that involves precision and safety.
When you take your child fishing, the most important thing to keep in mind is their safety. What kind of fishing are you trying to introduce? Are you thinking about a day of bottom fishing? Does pier fishing suit your needs? Are you going to go all out and take your child for a deep-sea fishing excursion?
Regardless of what you decide is best, you should have the basic safety essentials with you at all times. A first aid kit is mandatory because whenever a kid is involved accidents will happen. Children tend to get poked, scratched, and barbed, so you need to be prepared. If you are going out into the sea and away from the shore, make sure that you have life jackets and make sure that your child is wearing one even he or she has no intention of getting into the water. Keep in mind your child’s abilities when it comes to swimming. If you do not think that they are a strong swimmer, you may want to keep your boat docked.
Make sure to buy and stock your child’s tackle box. A youngster’s first tackle box should be small and lightweight. There is nothing complex about the contents of a beginner’s tackle box. All a child needs are some pre-tied hooks, some bobbers, a couple of weights, swivels, and small scissors or fingernail clippers to cut their line. A tackle box is a fingerprint for many who view it as a personal expression. Let your child see the basics so that they can build their own to represent themselves one-day.
Make sure to lead by example when you take your child fishing. Teach them how to keep the line taut so that they will be able to respond properly if a fish bites their line. As soon as your child feels the bite, teach them how to set the hook. Tug back on the rod in order to firmly set the hook in the fish’s lip. Take the time with your child to let them learn techniques like “playing the fish”. Part of the fun of fishing is the struggle between the man and the fish, so let your child have the entire experience and not just a partial one.
When you introduce fishing to your child, you have certain advantages to teaching them at a younger rather than older age. Younger child have a greater absorption rate with a desire to soak up as much information as they can. Take the time that you and your child are sharing to educate them about catch and release regulations and fishing for food as opposed to pleasure. If your child decides that they want to let the fish that you catch go, make sure that you know the right way to release. Cleaning the fish can either make a child vomit or ask when the next trip is going to be, so use discretion in regards to age when preparing your catch for dinner.
There will be good days and bad days when fishing with your kids. Kids have a tendency to not listen, become disinterested fast or fall asleep at inopportune times. Patience is the key to taking children out for a day of fishing. Repetition will also make your child more comfortable with the whole process. Regardless of whether a fish is caught or not, take the time to bond with your child while using fishing as an excuse.
Massena has a great place for fishing, accessible from shore. You can visit fishmassena.com to learn more or download the Explore Massena app to learn fishing spots around Massena and our neighboring communities. What better place to harvest a love of fishing than Massena. We are home to #1 fishery in the nation, the St. Lawrence River as well as the Racquette and Grasse Rivers.