How to cast fishing line

Spin casting is an ideal fishing method for beginning anglers. Spin-casting equipment is easier to use than bait equipment. You can use it to cast light and heavy lures without tangling or breaking your fishing line. Basic equipment includes a 7-foot rod, spinning reel, and 6-10 pound test line for casting 1/16 to 3/4 ounce lures. You can use an open-face, closed-face, or spin-cast reel for spinning.

Hold the rod at approximately waist level, holding it so that the reel is below the rod and the reel shaft feels natural between your fingers. The bait or lure should hang 10 to 18 inches below the end of the rod.

Hook the line with your index finger and open the bail, still holding the line.

Pull the tip of the rod back so that it passes over your dominant shoulder and then flick it forward quickly aiming the tip of the rod at your target. As the rod approaches your shoulder, release the line with your finger so that the weight of the lure pulls the line off the reel. Close the bail with your hand and you are ready to rewind the lure.


Drag is simply a pair of friction plates inside the fishing reels. If the fish pulls the line with enough force, the friction is overcome and the reel rotates backwards, letting the line come out, preventing it from breaking. You want to set up the drag on a fishing reel before your first cast of the day. Adjusting it while fighting a fish can be difficult. Also, fishing reels are not designed to fit while fishing, so doing so could cause damage.

The easiest way to set drag on a spinning reel is to test it first by pulling the line directly onto the reel.

Squeeze the drag a few clicks to the right, if the line is pulled too easily. If it is too hard, loosen it one or two to the left.

If you think you can’t judge force accurately, a small spring scale can help, such as those used in Boca Grips or other fish handling devices used for catch and release.

Better to have the trawl too loose and have to fight a fish a bit more than to have it too tight and break a large one.

If you are fishing with braided fishing line instead of monofilament, you will want to take a few turns of the line around the handle of your fishing pliers or a pencil rather than using your bare hands to test the drag. The braid will cut directly on your fingers if you pull too hard.

Once you have learned how to set the drag on a fishing reel, you are ready to start casting.

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