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5 Tips to Avoid Backlash When Throwing a Baitcasting Reel

5 Tips to Avoid Backlash When Throwing a Baitcasting Reel

Backlash happens when the lure slows down after casting, but the spool does not—resulting in a tangled mess of line, also known as a “bird’s nest.” This is what usually discourages people from using a baitcasting reel. However, there are many advantages to using a baitcaster rather than a spinning reel—such as allowing for more precision and control, giving you a more accurate cast. Listed below are a few ways to help prevent, or lessen, backlash.

1. Choose the best equipment

Before anything else, you need to ensure that you have the best equipment for baitcasting. When you are just beginning, choosing a shorter rod will give you more control. You should choose a rod with medium action to help you cast your lure without backlash. When just starting, you want to choose the right fishing line to make it easier to untangle a bird’s nest. Monofilament causes the least backlash and is the easiest line to untangle than a braided line or fluorocarbon.

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You also need to choose the correct lure. A heavy lure—such as a big crankbait or large swimbait—works really well for baitcasting when you’re just beginning. Heavier lures pull the line into the water more quickly, while a light lure will just follow the line, or the wind, causing more backlash. Light lures may not be able to keep up with the reel and may not cast out fast enough.

2. Adjust the brake system and spool tension and do a test cast

In the beginning, you want to set the brake system to the highest setting. This gives you more control and allows less movement while you practice. When you become more comfortable, you can begin to lower the tension to allow longer baits. You can find the wheel or dial, which controls the braking of the line, on the side of your baitcaster.

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Most baitcasting reels enable you to adjust the braking the system, which helps in preventing backlash. Just as important, you need to ensure that your spool tension is set just right. If it is too high or too low, it can result in backlash. You want your lure to fall at neither too high nor low of a speed—but at a medium pace. There is no correct setting, so use trial and error to see where you feel most comfortable.

3. Practice short distances

As you start out, and are getting used to the new settings on your baitcaster, you should begin practicing with short distances. This will allow your hands to get used to the feel of the baitcaster. It is usually easier to begin casting side arm and then moving to overhand.

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4. Use the wind to your advantage

When you start out, do not cast your lure against the wind, but with it. Using the wind to your advantage can help push the bait forward for more accuracy in casting. You may want to do a few test casts on dry land if you can’t find a spot that has the wind to your back. Casting against the wind will slow down your lure, but not your reel, resulting in backlash. As you become more comfortable with your reel and gain experience, you can begin casting into the wind.

5. Practice makes perfect

In the beginning, you can invest in an entry-level reel to give you a good idea of what it’s like to cast a baitcaster. Beginner reels are affordable and some have systems that prevent backlash. If it’s possible, try practice casting in your backyard so you can have some control of your surroundings.

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Once you’ve gotten the feel for your baitcaster, test it out on the water. You can experiment with different braking and tension settings to see which is most comfortable. When you feel that you are getting the hang of it, you can try investing in a more advanced baitcaster. Remember: practice, practice, practice!

By following these tips, you’ll be casting like a pro in no time!

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Last Updated on July 10, 2020

How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

We all have them—those hurtful, frustrating, offensive, manipulative people in our lives. No matter how hard we try to surround ourselves with positive and kind people, there will always be those who will disrespect, insult, berate, and misuse you if we allow them to.

We may, for a variety of reasons, not be able to avoid them, but we can determine how we interact with them and how we allow them to interact with us.

So, how to take control of your life and stop being pushed around?

Learning to set clear firm boundaries with the people in our lives at work and in our personal lives is the best way to protect ourselves from the negative effects of this kind of behavior.

What Boundaries Are (And What They’re Not)

Boundaries are limits

—they are not threats or ultimatums. Boundaries inform or teach. They are not a form of punishment.

Boundaries are firm lines—determined by you—which cannot be crossed by those around you. They are guidelines for how you will allow others to treat you and what kind of behaviors you will expect.

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Healthy personal boundaries help protect you from physical or emotional pain. You may also need to set firm boundaries at work to ensure you and your time are not disrespected. Don’t allow others to take advantage of your kindness and generosity.

Clear boundaries communicate to others that you demand respect and consideration—that you are willing to stand up for yourself and that you will not be a doormat for anyone. They are a “no trespassing” sign that makes it very clear when a line has been crossed and that there will be consequences for doing so.

Boundaries are not set with the intention of changing other people. They may change how people interact with you, but they are more about enforcing your needs than attempting to change the general behavior and attitude of others.

How to Establish Boundaries and Take Control of Your Life

Here are some ways that you can establish boundaries and take control of your life.

1. Self-Awareness Comes First

Before you can establish boundaries with others, you first need to understand what your needs are.

You are entitled to respect. You have the right to protect yourself from inappropriate or offensive behavior. Setting boundaries is a way of honoring your needs.

To set appropriate boundaries, you need to be clear about what healthy behaviors look like—what healthy relationships look like.

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You first have to become more aware of your feelings and honest with yourself about your expectations and what you feel is appropriate behavior:

  • Where do you need to establish better boundaries?
  • When do you feel disrespected?
  • When do you feel violated, frustrated, or angered by the behavior of others?
  • In what situations do you feel you are being mistreated or taken advantage of?
  • When do you want to be alone?
  • How much space do you need?

You need to honor your own needs and boundaries before you can expect others to honor them. This allows you to take control of your life.

2. Clear Communication Is Essential

Inform others clearly and directly what your expectations are. It is essential to have clear communication if you want others to respect your boundaries. Explain in an honest and respectful tone what you find offensive or unacceptable.

Many people simply aren’t aware that they are behaving inappropriately. They may never have been taught proper manners or consideration for others.

3. Be Specific but Don’t Blame

Taking a blaming or punishing attitude automatically puts people on the defensive. People will not listen when they feel attacked. It’s part of human nature.

That said, you do not need to overexplain or defend yourself. Boundaries are not open to compromise.

Sample language:

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  • “You may not…yell or raise your voice to me…”
  • “I need…to be treated with respect…”
  • “It’s not okay when…you take things from my desk without asking…”
  • “I won’t…do your work…cover for you anymore…”
  • “It’s not acceptable when…you ridicule or insult me…”
  • “I am uncomfortable when…you use offensive language”
  • “I will no longer be able to…lend you money…”

Being able to communicate these without sounding accusatory is essential if you want others to respect your boundaries so you can take control of your life.

4. Consequences Are Often Necessary

Determine what the appropriate consequences will be when boundaries are crossed. If it’s appropriate, be clear about those consequences upfront when communicating those boundaries to others.

Follow through. People won’t respect your boundaries if you don’t enforce them.

Standing our ground and forcing consequences doesn’t come easily to us. We want to be nice. We want people to like us, but we shouldn’t have to trade our self-respect to gain friends or to achieve success.

We may be tempted to let minor disrespect slide to avoid conflict, but as the familiar saying goes, “if you give people an inch, they’ll take a mile.”

It’s much easier to address offensive or inappropriate behavior now than to wait until that behavior has gotten completely out of hand.

It’s also important to remember that positive reinforcement is even more powerful than negative consequences. When people do alter the way they treat you, acknowledge it. Let people know that you notice and appreciate their efforts.

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Final Thoughts

Respect is always a valid reason for setting a boundary. Don’t defend yourself or your needs. Boundaries are often necessary to protect your time, your space, and your feelings. And these are essential if you want to take control of your life.

Start with the easiest boundaries first. Setting boundaries is a skill that needs to be practiced. Enlist support from others if necessary. Inform people immediately when they have crossed the line.

Don’t wait. Communicate politely and directly. Be clear about the consequences and follow them through.

The better you become at setting your own boundaries, the better you become at recognizing and respecting the boundaries of others.

Remember that establishing boundaries is your right. You are entitled to respect. You can’t control how other people behave, but you do have control over the way you allow people to treat you.

Learning to set boundaries is not always easy, but with time, it will become more comfortable. You may eventually find that boundaries become automatic and you no longer need to consciously set them.

They will simply become a natural extension of your self-respect.

Featured photo credit: Thomas Kelley via unsplash.com

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