You can double or even triple the number of fish you catch right now. It’s easy and, best of all, free. You don’t need to give a dime to any big tackle companies or to the big chain stores. The only thing it will cost you is a little time.

The secret is so simple and easy that it often goes overlooked by both beginning and experienced anglers. Don’t waste years of fishing experimenting with costly fishing lures or gimmicks. In just a few minutes a day, you can instantly increase the number of fish you catch without spending a dime.

The Easiest Way to Catch More Fish

The secret anyone can use to catch more fish is improving casting. Many anglers never actually practice their casting. Improving your casting is such a simple way to increase strikes that it often goes overlooked by most anglers. Many anglers don’t even think about casting until they are on the water. Inaccurate casting dramatically decreases your chances of catching big fish. Don’t assume you are a proficient caster just because you’ve caught fish or because you’ve been fishing for a long time. Don’t make the same mistake that I did-take this test now to see if you can cast.

The Test that Tripled the Number of Fish I Caught

The tackle companies and chain stores make big profits from unsuspecting anglers. In fact, according the the US Fish and Wildlife Service, sportspersons spent an estimated $34 billion in 2001 alone. The fishing industry spends a lot of money on packaging and sponsorships to try to convince anglers that they know all about what catches fish. They would like you to believe that their expensive “scientifically tested” lures are catching you fish, but it just may be where your lure or bait landed that actually caught the fish. Take the test in this article before wasting any money on overpriced lures or gimmicks.

Monster Bass are Lazy. You Can’t Be!

Big fish are lazy. They are looking to gain the most amount of energy for the least amount of work. They are like a teenager sitting on a couch watching TV. If you put cheese doodles on the coffee table, they will be eaten in an instant, but if you place the cheese doodles ten feet away, out of an arm’s reach, you will dramatically decrease the chance that they will be eaten. It doesn’t matter if you substitute cheese puffs for cheese doodles. The closer the food gets to the teenager, the more likely it is to be eaten. It is the accuracy of the bait; it is the same way with fish. You’ve got to put your lure or bait where fish will not have to expend energy.

The biggest fish, especially bass, are smart and lazy. They have learned to stay close to cover where they can be protected while waiting to ambush prey. One of the best places to find fish is in structure. Structure could be any number of things: docks, boat ramps, rocks, trees, stumps, bridges, or any other place fish can find protection and still meet their basic needs. Not all structure holds fish, but if you can find structure located next to deep water, there is a good chance fish will be holding there. If you scare fish with inaccurate casts, they will often head to deeper water until they feel safe enough to return. This decreases your chances of catching them.

You May Not Get a Second Chance to Make Fish Strike

The first cast you make has the highest probability of generating a reaction strike. On certain days, only the first cast will catch fish. If you’ve ever cast and gotten a strike, but then didn’t get any more strikes, the first strike was most likely a reaction strike. You may not get a second chance at a large fish. If your cast is off by even a foot, you might send a lunker into deeper water where it will wait for a more accurate caster to come along and catch it.

The Cast is More Important Than the Lure

An amazing lure that a fish never sees won’t catch fish. You can generate reaction strikes with some simple lures and they do not to be expensive. Instead of wasting money on expensive lures that promise to catch fish, it is a better idea to put five minutes a day into developing a great cast.

Seven Ways You Can Catch More Fish By Improving Your Casting

When you can consistently and accurately cast a lure 20-30 feet, you’ll catch more fish. Becoming a great caster can double the number of fish you catch. Pinpoint accuracy can be the difference between a fish in the boat or just a splash on the water.

o Most anglers don’t get as much time as they would like to on the water, and without knowing it, many anglers are practicing their casting while they are fishing. This is not the time to practice casting! Imagine if the only time basketball players practiced shooting was during a game! Their shooting percentages would plummet. It is the same with fishing. Practice at home in the off season and your percentages will go up.

o Practicing casting is a great way to cure cabin fever in the off season.

o Practicing casting will help you become more familiar with your equipment as well as maintaining it for fishing trips.

o If you can’t cast with pinpoint accuracy, you will not be able to access some of the best spots to catch fish, deep in heavy cover.

o If you can’t cast with pinpoint accuracy you will get snagged. While you’re snagged your lure or bait isn’t in the water and you are decreasing your chances of catching fish.

o If you are releasing a snag, you will be scaring fish and adding frustration to your day.

o Increasing your casting ability creates instant confidence. Confidence is the most important factor in fishing.

You’re TEN Casts Away From a Ten Pound BASS-Take This Test!

Here’s the test every angler should take.

Take a lure or weight and rig it to your fishing pole. If you are using a lure, take off the hooks. Try to practice with a weight equal to what you would typically fish with.

Mark off 15-20 feet. Place a plate or frisbee on the ground. Step back and make ten casts. Keep track of how often you get the lure on the target.

Keep track of how many casts it takes you to hit the target? Imagine there is huge fish waiting under the target. Your chances of catching that fish dramatically decrease with each successive cast. The goal is to hit the target directly on the first cast, every time. If you can’t do this, practice for a few weeks and it will become second nature. You’ll catch more fish, guaranteed.

When Did you Hit the Target?

1st Cast: If you hit the target on the first cast, you can often generate a reaction strike. If you generate a reaction strike, almost any lure will cause a fish to strike. At this point the fish is often just reacting. Be ready to set your hook.

2nd Cast: You may be able to generate a reaction strike if you hit the target on this cast.

3rd Cast: You still have a shot at getting the fish, but you will most likely not generate a reaction strike.

4th Cast: If you haven’t hit the target yet, you might be able to entice the fish to strike by using another method or lure.

5th Cast-10th Cast:

It is better to move on to a new location if you haven’t hit the target by now. Although you may still get a strike, the fish is probably weary and will be harder to catch, even if it will take your lure.

Every time your cast lands off target, there is a good chance that you are scaring off wary fish. Instead of startling the fish and generating a reaction strike, you just scared it into not striking. Increase your accuracy, and you’ll increase your confidence, and you’ll catch more fish. Can you consistently hit a small target with a lure? Professional anglers know the importance of casting. They practice, and you should too!

Test #2 Catch Even More Fish

To dramatically increase the number of fish you catch, you will need to cast into structure, not around structure. This second test will simulate a fish holding in structure. If you hit any thing other than the target, you should consider yourself snagged. A snag that needs to be released by hand instantly drops your chances of catching fish in that area. If you have to unhook a snag, there is a good chance that you will scare of all the fish in a 20-30 foot radius. Work on your cast until you can hit the target without hitting the chair. Do this and you will catch more fish.

Take a chair and put it over the plate. Push the plate four inches back from the front legs of the chair. Cast ten times. How long did it take you to hit the target?

Most anglers practice their casting while they are fishing. If you want to increase your strikes by 50%, 60%, 70% or more, practice your casting at home and catch fish when you go fishing.

Michael Stead is the author of Fishing with a Fork: Secrets the Fishing Industry Doesn’t Want you to Know. After being disappointed by countless lures and gimmicks that promised to catch fish, he started creating his own lures from ordinary household materials. He was shocked by his results. He is a teacher. He raises both trout and worms. For more information, he can be contacted at []