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Drew: Fishing Safety For The Whole Family

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By Samuetta Hill Drew

Fishing is a very old activity.  It is referred to numerous times in the Bible.  It was then more of a vocation than a sport.  People’s basic survival was rooted in their ability to fish successfully.  Even in modern times, fishing continues to be a vocation in many parts of the world including the United States.  This week’s article will focus on fishing as a recreational sport. Where fishing is not necessarily a very dangerous sport there are some safety measures to consider especially when fishing with children.

During this current age of technology, children and electronic games, fishing has the potential of being a great bonding activity for parents and their child(ren) when presented in a positive manner.  Simple and fun become the two main ingredients.

It can also be a wonderful sport for the entire family.  Fishing provides a great opportunity for the family to talk and laugh as well as be a teachable moment to learn about the environment and its importance.  It further offers everyone an opportunity to relax and break away from busy routines. It’s also an excellent way to teach and practice patience as a virtue everyone can learn no matter the age.

To help make this experience more enjoyable make sure you pack your patience along with the snacks, water, juice, bug- spray, sun protective spray/cream and your first aid kit. Let’s review some other recommended measures to help continue making this fishing experience a successful and enjoyable one for all involved.

Protective eyewear is a great place to start. The best type are polarized sunglasses to reduce eye strain and for spotting fish.  If you’re fishing at night, bring along a pair of clear glasses.

Using barbless hooks is also recommended because they are much easier for children to remove.  Also bring child friendly tackle.  Avoid baby poles.  It is best to bring lighter weight gear children can handle better.

Bring and use your PFD (personal floatation device) if you’re fishing from a boat. Also, bring along a float and line so if needed, it can be used to toss to a child even when fishing from dry land.

Review all safety rules before fishing.  You don’t want anyone, especially a small child, to get hurt on any fishing or boating gear.

Other measures to consider are selecting the best location.  Shorter the drives or walks are preferred.  Remember the ultimate goal is to introduce them to the sport so they will enjoy it and want to do it more often.  So, keep it light, safe and fun.  This is why the age of the child(ren) should be a major consideration when determining the entire length of the fishing trip.

Always be prepared for the unexpected by packing extra socks, pants not shorts, shoes and hats.  This will be helpful if any of these items gets wet they have some dry clothing to change into.

Where fishing offers a fantastic and fun recreational sporting activity for both parents and children alike it remains important to always Keep an Eye on Safety