Anglers of all skill levels can benefit from an exercise program designed specifically to combat fatigue on the water. Whether an angler is fishing a club tournament, a local open, or in at a higher level, physical fitness can have an impact on an angler's success.
There are several areas of the body on which an angler should concentrate. The most obvious is the arms. Hundreds of casts per day and multiple hook sets will take their toll on unprepared arm muscles. Anglers should pay special attention to not only the bicep and triceps of the upper arms, but also the forearm muscles and wrists. Building these muscles can be done with the use of small weights and will greatly reduce fatigue over an 8 hour fishing day.
An angler's back may also take a beating on the water. Stretching and strengthening exercises for the back are also important. While on the water, an angler is not only standing, bending, and pulling a great deal of the day, but also his or her body is being subject to wind and wave activity. All of these things can cause pain and discomfort, which may be the difference between cashing a check in a tournament and spending time sitting in the boat or not paying full attention to a line in the water.
Another area an angler that is crucial to on-the-water comfort is that of conditioning the leg muscles. Again, wind, waves, and a variety of other forces put an undue strain on the angler in this area. Pay special attention to the calves when strengthening and stretching. Not only will a tournament angler be standing for extended periods of time on a boat which may be rocking or rolling with waves, but often times, one leg will be elevated with a foot controlling the trolling motor.
Anglers of all levels can benefit from even a small amount of strengthening and toning in the off season. While others may be stretching tired backs and limbs or sitting in the bottom of the boat for lunch or for an extended period of re-tying, a toned angler will be concentrating on making the correct casts and figuring out the patterns of the fish.
There are several resources for an angler in northern Wisconsin to get in shape. For instance the YMCA of the Northwoods might be a great place to start to get into a fitness regimen. Or, for those Northwoods anglers who have followed the Lindner family for years, perhaps a few lessons from Troy Lindner here might be just what the doctor ordered.
No matter how an angler tackles fitness, getting in shape now will reap great rewards on the water this summer.