It's tournament time and the fishing fever is in the air. Bad economy? I can't tell. I looked around at the pre-tournament meeting for the BFL N.C. division held Saturday on Lake Wylie, and I saw 220 people registering. Three flights leaving in the morning blast off.
As I stood there and looked at all the anglers, I thought I was at a baby shower for men. It looked like some were 3 months, some looked 5 months and others looked like they were 8 months pregnant. OK, not everybody, just most of us.
I looked down and said,"Wow!" I look about 4 months myself.
Anglers want to be considered athletes, and we want what we do to be considered a sport. Young children look up to us. As I think about our sport, what kind of conditioning do we need to do to get in shape for the big game?
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Bass fishing is a growing sport, and if we want to be examples and be taken seriously, we need to work on our image.
I've never seen a fisherman on a Wheaties box. I have never seen a fisherman in a "Just do it" commercial. I think getting our minds and bodies in shape will help us market ourselves and the sport of bass fishing in the global advertising arena. We can endorse more than just fishing gear.
If you really look at both FLW and BASS, branding a bass angler is about looks and how well they can speak publicly. So I hear there's a new gym called Anytime Fitness in Lake Wylie. I think I'll pay them a visit because I'm guilty, too.
Maliek Carrington, known as Mr. Maliek, of Steele Creek is an amateur angler who fishes in the Bassmaster Weekend Series. He started Fishing4Reel about five years ago to expose children to fishing by taking them on freshwater and saltwater fishing trips. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.