Father’s Day Fun: Why Dads Should Take Their Daughters Fishing And Boating

Posted 6/5/24

(BPT) - How were you introduced to fishing? For many, their fishing journey began with family and friends. Perhaps their dad or grandpa took them as children to cast a line at a local lake, or they …

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Father’s Day Fun: Why Dads Should Take Their Daughters Fishing And Boating

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(BPT) - How were you introduced to fishing? For many, their fishing journey began with family and friends. Perhaps their dad or grandpa took them as children to cast a line at a local lake, or they hit the water with a neighborhood friend. As of 2023, four in ten people in the United States said family or friends took them fishing for the first time, and 78% said they went fishing to spend quality time with friends or family.1 It’s clear that family and fishing are closely linked.

Unfortunately, despite providing a wide range of benefits, especially to women’s mental and physical well-being, including improved happiness, grit, patience, confidence and health, young girls' participation in fishing drops off around the age of 12 and research shows that female anglers stop fishing at an 11% higher rate than their male counterparts.

It’s hard to say exactly why this is, but it’s likely due to a combination of factors. Some girls may feel excluded from fishing and boating trips, which are often geared toward boys, coming to feel like it’s not meant for them. In other cases, whether due to common gender expectations or a belief that their daughters have outgrown the activities, well-meaning fathers might stop inviting their daughters to go fishing and boating.

Whatever the case, girls are missing out on the fun, life-changing activities found in fishing and boating.

Getting girls out on the water

To change that, Take Me Fishing™ is encouraging dads to invite their daughters back on the water this Father’s Day. For girls and women especially, fishing is a powerful tool for personal growth and empowerment, and Take Me Fishing is committed to inspiring more girls to discover the benefits of fishing.

For dads looking to spend quality time with their daughters this Father’s Day, fishing and boating are fun outdoor activities that come with many benefits, not least of which is time away from screens. In a world where young children spend an increasing amount of their day on computers, phones and other devices,2 outdoor activities can provide an important antidote to combat excessive screen time. What’s more, research has shown a consistent link between high social media use and mental health problems for girls3. In addition to more time spent with good old dad, fishing and boating offer a reprieve and can promote a sense of balance in an increasingly digital world, and women who fish report greater mental strength and stress management than those who don’t.1

Fishing’s positive impact on girls

Recent research from Take Me Fishing and Ipsos shows fishing can have a wide range of benefits for girls who stick with it, making the case for more dad and daughter time on the water.

Of the women surveyed, one in four say fishing improves their mood, brings them peace and helps them manage their mental health and long-term stress. Women who fish also reported greater perseverance and were more likely to say setbacks don’t discourage them.

Other findings from the survey include:

  • Almost half of women who fish say that fishing teaches them patience and helps develop their confidence.
  • Women who fish report higher self-esteem than women who don’t.
  • One in five women who fish feel like they can do anything they set their mind to.

Through fishing, women and girls can boost their mental and emotional well-being and improve their quality of life.

By taking their daughters fishing, fathers play a pivotal role in this journey of discovery and can help their children build lifelong confidence and self-esteem. Visit takemefishing.org/secondcatch to learn more and for an easy way to invite daughters out on the water.

  1. Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation, 2024 Special Report on Fishing.
  2. Screen time among school-aged children of aged 6–14: a systematic review, Global Health Research and Policy, 2023.
  3. Twenge JM, Haidt J, Lozano J, Cummins KM. Specification curve analysis shows that social media use is linked to poor mental health, especially among girls. Acta Psychol (Amst). 2022;224:103512. doi:10.1016/j.actpsy.2022.103512