It’s no secret that physical activity is good for your health, especially when you’re out in nature. Fishing is considered by many to be a recreational sport for boring people, but it truly has nothing to do with boredom. This activity is good for the body and soul. Out in the fresh air and water, fishing reduces your stress levels and helps to create a mental space between yourself and worries of the world.
Learning new skills
If you fish regularly, you will feel comfortable outside and, through that comfort, you will learn to respect and love the environment so much more. In time you will research various fishing techniques that you can try to master.
The fishing process implies good planning and organizational capacity. You have to prepare the right equipment and make sure you take care of your supplies. This process stimulates the mind and keeps your brain agile and sharp.
Removing the lure from the fishing rod requires a solid eye-manual skill. Using this coordination skill, and the muscles involved in it, fishing can strengthen hand-eye coordination.
Those who spend a few hours in nature and engage in relaxing activities such as fishing have lower blood pressure. Fishing also helps with anxiety. You can easily leave the stress of everyday life at home. Also, fishing is ideal for putting your patience to the test.
Fishing strengthens the immune system. A day outside in the sun is the best source of vitamin D that will boost your immune system. Vitamin D helps the body regulate the absorption of calcium and phosphorus – two minerals that have been proven to improve immune function and help fight diseases.
Anyone who has ever caught a fish knows: Even the smallest catch requires strength in the shoulders, back, arms and legs. This, of course, strengthens the entire muscular system of the body.
Soothing influence of fishing
Any passionate fisherman will tell you that there is far more to fishing than just catching a fish. It may be relaxing, but it is by no means passive. When you are in a boat with a fishing rod in your hand, you interact with the water and the environment. It is a challenge to master these skills, but it distracts us in the best possible way – we just focus on what is in front of us. This state of concentration takes us far from the worries of the world.
Today, research has proven that the soothing influence of fishing is strong enough to help us treat post-traumatic stress disorder. Since 2007, an organization called Heroes on the Water has helped over 3,000 wounded veterans recover, relax and reintegrate into society by allowing them to go kayaking. This sport provides triple therapy: physical (rowing and fishing), working (learning new skills) and mental (thanks to freedom and relaxation due to being on the water).
Water relaxes the brain
The brain adapts its model of observation constantly so that it can distinguish relevant from irrelevant information in its environment. It always strives to record and understand the meaning of things and events. In the natural environment near or on the water, there is a high degree of predictability – unlike crowded streets; water is largely the same in any given moment. The background we see is largely controlled, allowing the brain to relax.
Against this settled background, the brain continues to search for something that was not there before, because the essence of survival lies in the correct interpretation of things that don’t fit into the landscape. When the brain notices a change on the surface (such as waves or a fish), it awakens a sense of surprise and novelty, followed by pleasant surges of dopamine. Because water surfaces change, yet remain the same at the same time, we experience familiarity and novelty near it.