Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Champions are Made in the Off Season

Any high school, college or professional athlete that plays a sport has heard these lines from their coach during the off season.  For softball and baseball players it's practicing your swing and football players, lifting weights and studying film.  Bass fishing is no different, put the work in now and see the success later.  As a pro, your off season probably consists of doing commercials for sponsors, seminars and research for the upcoming lake schedule.

Anglers listen at the Student Angler Bass Education Series

Capitol Outdoors attended a Student Angler Bass Education Series hosted by Scheels where the Glenwood Titans Bass Fishing Team and RHS Bass Fishing Team brought in speakers.  In the past speakers included fishery biologist, collegiate level anglers and this month Scott Reed from Abu Garcia.  "I've done a couple of these seminars here" said Connor Jones a Sophomore at Chatham Glenwood High School.  He and several other local high school bass anglers are putting in the work this off season.  "There's a lot to know out there and the more you know the better" he said.  With his first tournament of the year happening at the end of March he'll be using that knowledge sooner rather then later.  

I've always said that I'm no pro, but I do like to think I have knowledge in fishing.  Well, I was wrong again!  The hands on knowledge these student anglers are exposed to these days is incredible.  Let's take Scott Reed's presentation on "Fishing Line University".  It was an intensive breakdown on fishing line. I'm not just talking the difference between mono and fluorocarbon.  This particular seminar puts the YouTube video I've seen to shame.  It was that good.  Maybe it had to do with the idea that Scott was very fluent in line language, maybe it was my little knowledge & understanding of fishing line.  Regardless, I walked away with a bunch of knowledge.

Off season is a great time to learn, study and prepare for the upcoming season.  However, I asked both 2017 AOY Brandon Palaniuk  and Connor what their goals are for the 2018 season.  While their goals are drastically different just based on the skill level, it amazes me the attitude and sportsmanship high school anglers have.  "I just want to improve from last year", said Connor.  I loved this answer and made me really think of my goals for 2018. 

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