5 Tips on How to Start Fishing for Beginners

By Tom Keer

Apr 12, 2017

Every angler gets started at some point, and these five points help make sure beginners want to continue to go beyond that first trip.

Fishing is a great group activity. The memory of a first fishing trip and a first catch last a lifetime. But for the beginner, it is important to learn the basics of how to start fishing. These 5 tips will help you get started immediately.

1. Easy to use tackle: Fishing gear for beginners should be simple. Start with spinning rods and spoons to teach the basics of casting. Both are effective in the fish catching department, and that means you can also cover fish hooking, fighting and landing techniques. Save bait casting and fly fishing for later on.

2. Where to fish: Think of open areas. Ponds, lakes, and beaches that are free of trees make for easy casting. Reduce frustration that comes from snag and hang ups by avoiding spots with sub-surface obstructions like deadfall logs, weeds, or rocks.

3. Easy to catch fish. Fishing for beginners should include hooked fish, so pick a prime time when new anglers can get some action. That first catch or two fires up first-timers and makes them want to go again.

4. Repetitions make the master. One of the most important beginner fishing tips is that it's better to go five times in a few weeks as opposed to five times in an entire year. Skills improve quickly with that focused effort, and you're likely to see the new angler gain confidence and want to go more often. Beginners who have trips spread out over a year wind up always starting over, and that can be frustrating.

5. Keep it short and tightly focused. Taking a beginner on a 13-hour trip might be too much. Give them shorter trips so they're not burned out. You can increase time as they get used to the entire process of gathering the gear, picking a spot, fishing, catching and cleaning up. If possible, end on a high note which is a caught and landed fish. Fishing for beginners includes what they remember last, and if it's a fish the desire to go again carries them forward.

The very best way for an angler to learn how to start fishing is by taking them out for a day on the water. With the best time of year approaching, now is the perfect time to go. And be sure to have your fishing license.

Tom Keer
Tom Keer
Tom Keer is an award-winning writer who lives on Cape Cod, Massachusetts.  He is a columnist for the Upland Almanac, a Contributing Writer for Covey Rise magazine, a Contributing Editor for both Fly Rod and Reel and Fly Fish America, and a blogger for the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation’s Take Me Fishing program.  Keer writes regularly for over a dozen outdoor magazines on topics related to fishing, hunting, boating, and other outdoor pursuits.  When they are not fishing, Keer and his family hunt upland birds over their three English setters.  His first book, a Fly Fishers Guide to the New England Coast was released in January 2011.  Visit him at www.tomkeer.com or at www.thekeergroup.com.