Coaching with the NFA
This Summer I have been very busy coaching alongside my colleagues from the NFA often in conjunction with the Environment Agency at various fisheries in the South of England. The days are organised by the fishery in question and the EA provide the necessary support and fund a group of NFA coaches. These events are usually well publicised locally and the general idea is to encourage beginners to try fishing for the first time under the guidance of a qualified coach for a short taster session of about half an hour.
The beginners are often provided with a starter pack at the end of their session, complete with a whip and a ready made rig. These days are great fun, involving a close interaction with various members of the public, often helping them to catch their first fish and provide me with a chance to fish different venues most of which I wouldn’t visit otherwise.
One such venue is Sparsholt Agricultural College where the Fishery Studies department have developed their own, very exclusive coarse fishing lake. They held an open day on the last week end of April and we were involved in our usual role. I set up my usual coaching kit, a composite pole (I don’t cry if it gets broken) with a number eight elastic and was soundly smashed on my second cast, the carp were obviously bigger than I expected. However once the public turned up the bigger carp stopped feeding and great sport was had by all the novices.
Another such event was held in Bordon, Hampshire at Kingsley Pond organised by Oakhanger Angling Club and is one of the prettiest venues I have ever visited.