The health benefits of fishing

Fishing fans are already well aware of the wonders of fishing – that feeling of heading out to the water, fishing rod and tackle by your side to see what you’ll catch at our beautiful 770-acre lake here at Bewl Water. And if the numbers of anglers visiting the fishing lakes in Kent are anything to go by, that is knowledge that is catching on fast.

 

But many of those people may not realise that apart from it being an enjoyable pastime fishing provides a wealth of mental, emotional and physical benefits for men and women of all ages.

 

Here are just 10 of the top ways that fishing at Bewl Water could make you a healthier, happier person. Benefits that will last much longer than the duration of your visit, you’ll feel good while on the water and back home, too.

 

  1. It provides good exercise

The fishing lakes of Kent may not be the first place you’d think to find a full body workout routine but contrary to popular belief, fishing doesn’t have to involve a lot of sitting around.

 

Even a comparatively relaxing day of bank fishing will require lots of walking up and down from spot to spot, while casting and retrieving will see you burn an average of 200 calories an hour.

 

And if you manage to hook a truly big fish, you'll expend a huge amount of energy and use every part of your body from shoulders, back, arms, core and leg muscles to bring it to the shore.

A lady holding fishing equipment walking towards a fishing boat at Bewl Water

  1. It keeps your heart happy

 

Regular physical activity like fishing is proven to make your heart stronger and lower your blood pressure but simply hanging out in nature will also help.

 

Research has found that just 30 minutes a week outdoors provides measurable results, so imagine what a day out on the water could provide.

 

  1. It speeds recovery

 

If you are recovering from an operation then simply getting out and about in nature has been shown by research to help post-operative recovery.

 

People were observed to heal quicker and have less pain if they had access to a natural environment. Clearly however the level of physical activity you undertake following an operation requires guidance from your doctor.

A man reeling in a catch on his fishing rod

  1. It improves your balance

 

Sitting for long periods at home or at work is not good for your health and can lead to a variety of problems including heart disease and diabetes. But fishing, and in particular fly- fishing, can help as it requires a lot of standing up and walking around in search of more fruitful fishing spots.

 

In addition, whether you are fishing from the bank or one of our 54 fishing boats at Bewl Water catching a fish can help improve balance.

 

Fishing is a perfect way to build core strength and flexibility as well as providing relief for muscular ailments such as back pain.

 

  1. It helps build social relationships

 

Fishing is an activity that suits all ages so why not take the opportunity to spend time with the whole family.

 

Being together helps build feelings of well-being and security, a sure fire route to better health and happiness. Fishing is also a great way to build friendships, another proven way to improve your life.

Two young boys holding a pike they caught at our fishing lake in Kent

  1. It trains your brain

 

Fighting off memory problems and cognitive decline is an important part of life as we age.

 

One of the greatest ways to maintain brain health is to keep challenging it with activities that require innovative or creative solutions. Anyone who has ever gone fishing is well aware of the myriad mental challenges that it can present.

 

Continually learning new things, building up your confidence and using all your senses are all key ways to beat the signs of ageing.

 

  1. It boosts your mood

 

Many of us spend hours indoors and that is unfortunate because sunlight provides a number of important health benefits.

 

For example, sunlight triggers your brain to release a hormone called serotonin. Low levels of serotonin are linked with a higher risk of depression. So if you want to feel happier, get outside.

 

In a process similar to meditation, the long hours spent in nature have also been proven to lower blood pressure and decrease stress.

A group of people posing for a picture in fishing clothing holding rods

  1. It increases your production of Vitamin D

 

While sunshine is working on your mood, remember that it is also helping you fight off disease.

 

Vitamin D, which our bodies synthesize when exposed to sunlight, helps us absorb calcium and phosphorus. This, in turn, boosts our immune system. Vitamin D also plays an important role in keeping bones healthy and strong.

 

  1. It helps you breathe easily

 

Spending the day, or even just a few hours, breathing the clean air at one of the fishing lakes in Kent will give your body a much-needed rest from the air pollution which many of us encounter on a daily basis.

 

Air pollution can lead to a number of health problems, including asthma, lung cancer and heart disease. So remember to bring the whole family next time you come to Bewl Water so they can all enjoy the benefits of breathing fresh clean air.

A scenic view across a large blue fishing lake in Kent

  1. Eating fish provides fatty acids

 

If you are fortunate enough to land a beautiful large trout remember that fish is a great source of low-fat, healthy protein with which you can feed your whole family.

 

It is particularly high in omega-3 fatty acids, which can lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke. It’s recommended that we should all be eating at least two portions of fish a week, including at least one oily fish, such as the rainbow trout you will find at Bewl Water.

 

But don’t just take our word for it – bring your family to Bewl Water, one of the premier fishing lakes in Kent, and enjoy the health benefits for yourselves.

 

And if fishing isn’t their cup of tea there is so much more to do here. From our action-packed laser challenge course to the Aqua Park and more, there is a fantastic range of fun activities and new places to explore.