Believe it or not, some people have actually never fished, don’t like fishing, are wary of trying it out, or even worse… they find it more boring than watching paint dry. I know, I know, it’s hard to hear this but, in order to make sure we get people the key they need for a happy life (AKA fly fishing), here are 5 foolproof ways to convince someone to start fly fishing. You can use one, you can use three or you can use all of these techniques, regardless, by the end of your spiel, your friend, relative or significant other will be thanking you for introducing them to the sport.
Remember, this is going to take patience and some level of self-control, but don’t be discouraged, you’ll get this person hooked in no time!
Capture Their Attention:
Nothing attracts people to an activity like showing them how insanely fun it can be. Whether your tactic is to tell them an intense fishing story, show them a fishing hype video, or a picture of that buck nasty brown you caught last weekend, make sure to capture their attention. Emphasize how thrilling the sport can be—how amazing it feels when you solve that puzzle and a fish is doubling your rod over. Or help them picture the beauty—the connection you have with nature as water runs past your legs, fish sip on bugs that dance on the water’s surface or the rhythmic nature of a cast.
Relief and Relaxation:
I would say for many people fishing is a chance to take a breather from the busy world that surrounds us and the constant motion in our lives. Really emphasize how relaxing fishing can be regardless of whether you catch fish or not—often times it’s the people we meet and places fishing brings us that contribute to amazing fishing experiences. Sharing a fishing experience is a great way to strengthen relationships with friends, family or someone close to you. For me, there’s almost nothing better than fishing with my best friend and sharing a moment where we both admire a fish as it swims away from our grasp and share a high five. Fishing can also be a very stress-relieving solitary activity where you are able to create a deeper connection between yourself and nature.
Keep it Simple for Now:
Make sure you don’t get carried away planning a potential fishing trip for you and this new angler. We know that all of us could fish from sun-up to sun-down, but your companion might not share the same enthusiasm or stamina. The key here is to make it short and simple. Start with an outing that is maybe 1-2 hours long: this will allow for enough time that the new angler can get the hang of things like casting, understanding where fish might be in the river, learning about bugs but it is also short enough that they can maintain a good level of engagement. And, of course, listen to the meteorologist, you don’t want their first experience to be in the pouring rain or for bad weather to bring up memories of an old disastrous fishing outing. The key here is to create an experience where they actually want to come back out.
Mix it Up:
For a non-fisherman fishing for even 30 minutes straight can be pretty daunting, so, just in case they lose interest, definitely plan to include other activities within the fishing itself or even after fishing. Incorporating things like canoe/kayak paddles, boating, going for a hike or even just promising a large meal afterward can be enough to keep people from associating the experience with boredom or disinterest.
“Fear Of Missing Out” or “Fear Of Missing Out On Fishing” as I like to call it is something that every human has and while this might sound harsh, take advantage of that. There’s no better way to use peer pressure than to make people feel like they are missing out on a good time. You can actually utilize capturing their attention and relief in a different way than I was talking about before. Remind this potential angler of all the action, relaxation and fun they aren’t having. Phrases like “wow, I can’t believe you didn’t see that amazing sunset from the river that we saw after we cooked some fresh brats from the local butcher that gave us the perfect fishing spot where we all caught our PB trout on mice in the middle of the day… too bad you weren’t there. I’m sure whatever ever you were doing was important though.”
At the end of the day, we all know, as anglers, that fishing is an amazing experience and it means something different to each and every person. We may not always catch fish, but even when things go wrong, it’s always a damn good time. Spread the word and take someone new fishing!
Or hook your new fly-curious pal up with a Postfly monthly subscription to launch them into the sport with all they need to get started!