Thoughts of a casting instructor part 2
I have now seen the angler cast.In a lot of cases they would use a typical over the head type cast used by 1000s of anglers which is good up to about 80yds; its limited to that because the angler is not making the rod work. He has used up all HIS power to bend the rod so at the end of the cast there is nothing left; he has used it to bend the rod!
If we can look at loading the rod first and then adding power as a “Turbo boost “. The rod is now working and increase in distance should follow with little or no effort, the cast will be kinder to baits as well.Fishing rods are designed to be 2/3rds broken before the power goes in.
So back to the angler; I explain the next steps and more importantly why it works. Turn him sideways on to the sea, feet shoulder width apart, sinker drop about half rod length, arms out straight, look up and pull with the left hand and then punch with the right( please note its a pull punch rather than a punch pull) Everything is good, the angler casts and it goes 40 yds straight down and to the left!!!
Casting is like most sports, the head position has a big role to play use your head and distance will improve. The angler did not look up, he looked straight out to sea hence the cast went low and left a common mistake!
So lets start again. Feet in position, the lead is under the rod tip which is low to the sand; left hand is high level with the anglers face. He looks up and pulls through leading with the left. Off the lead goes, about 80yds, the same distance as the overhead thump BUT with only 10% of the effort as the rod is now starting to work. With practice as a fishing cast it will put a bait at least 120yds with an easy relaxed style. In fact a world casting record of over 300 yds has just been recorded with an off the ground cast.
We have now been on the beach for an hour the angler now is getting into the swing(!) of the cast and has improved his distance , however so far we have been using mainly arm power now we will dial in some body rotation. The stance is the same, now swivel at the hips open the rod angle you should feel a tightening in your back. Body weight on the back leg and slowly untwist and pull the rod through power in late and the lead has now gone another 30 yds by using body rotation.
After 2 hours of work and questions its time to end the session, I like to end on a positive note, so I ask the angler to have one last cast which means nothing he can wind himself up and just hit it and see what happens, most of the time the lead just sails away and the smile on the anglers face makes the session worth while. Now the basics are in place its just up to him to to practice and then come back and see me so that once the cast is second nature to him we can look at adding the swing to the cast, but its important that the OTG cast is correct otherwise he will struggle with the pendulum.