Most of us believe that practice makes perfect..most of us.
To quote a former NBA All-Star; “I’m supposed to be the franchise player and we’re in here talking about practice. Not a game, not a game, not a game! Practice!”
Well, whether we like it or not, practice is more important than game day and when it comes to an individual sport like fishing, you can’t rely on anyone else to play dirty in the paint, battle in the corner for the puck, or take the high heat and deal with the chin music!
With a little bit of down time before his next tournament, Rahfish.com discussed practice with B.A.S.S Elite pro Greg Vinson and practice to Vinson is a big part of his game.
“The guys that win tournaments are the guys that are out there on a regular basis practicing,” says Vinson. “Although I haven’t been able to do a ton of fun fishing, the times I do get out, I definitely look at it like practice. I look at it like a baseball pitcher doing some work in the bullpen in the off season and getting some pitches in, it basically just keeps you tuned up.”
Part of the limited down time that most professional anglers have is spent trying new baits and perfecting new techniques, as this is what will give them more confidence when they travel to unknown waters for future tournaments.
“I also use my practice time to try out new baits,” explains Vinson. “Netbait has some new baits coming out and I know I’ll be able to catch them with these awesome new baits, but I always like to build confidence in a bait before I use it in a tournament. Most of the water these tournaments are on, we don’t have a ton of experience with, so I like to build confidence in my bait. If I know certain baits work in certain situations then I can apply that to the new water I’m fishing to give me a starting point.”
There really is no easy way to improve your fishing skills unless you practice and if you need to improve on a technique, then take it to the water and only focus on that technique. Fine tune your skills, pay close attention to how the fish react to bait size, color and retrieval speed. When you do start to get into a pattern with that technique, take note of; water depth and temperature, time of year, time of day and anything else that you can take away from practice and apply it to game day.
If you ask me, the hardest part about practice is patience. We all like to catch fish! But, if you aren’t willing to try new things, how will you improve?
This article was first published by RAHFISH.com