The simplest activities can often be the most refreshing. The millions of Americans who fly fish every year agree. It is a great way to replace the hustle of daily life with something far more serene. Fly fishing wellness programs have offered a new angle on the sport. But fly fishing isn’t just relaxing—cultures throughout the world have discovered that it is conducive to a healing state of mind.
A Time-Honored Sport
The sport dates back to antiquity. The first confirmed depiction of fishing with an artificial fly appeared in Macedonia in the second century AD. Described in a work by Claudius Aelianus, fly fishing was primarily an economic activity back then. But in other cultures fly fishing became valued for its mind-enhancing properties. For example, by the 12th century in Japan, Bushi (or as they’re known in the West, Samurai) were encouraged to take up the sport to train their minds during peacetime.
Fly Fishing Wellness Programs Highlight Therapeutic Aspects
While many kinds of fishing are competitive, driven by the desire for the biggest catch or most fish caught, fly fishing taps into something different. And based on increased interest in fly fishing, more people are getting to learn this first hand.
There’s a growing movement in the US—and worldwide—where more people take up the sport for its therapeutic benefits. This includes programs aimed at veterans as a way of treating and reducing the severity of PTSD symptoms.
Indeed, fly fishing is a great activity to include with a wellness program or spa package. Like meditation, tai chi, or yoga, it focuses the mind even as it engages the body and the immediate environment.
Resorts and lodges that offer fly fishing can offer traditional programs, as well as packages that put a special emphasis on wellness and meditative practice. If you’re looking to model your program on fly fishing’s wellness benefits, check out Reeling & Healing Midwest or Fishing For Wellness for inspiration for your own programs.