Hawk Talk – Always Striving to Improve
I constantly analyze my prior tournament finishes and official practice periods leading up to each event, so I can identify my strengths, weaknesses, and habits (good and bad) in order to help me become a better angler. There are many variables involved in bass fishing and sometimes it can be hard pinpointing why a tournament went well or didn’t. However, by paying close attention to the controllable variables, I’ve learned I perform better the more time I spend on the water between tournaments.
Looking back over the season, I also need to become more efficient during the three-day official practice period before each tournament. I’ve worked on both of these areas this off-season and have taken steps to make sure I continue to do so.
There are some anglers on the trail who rarely pick up a rod after the last tournament of the season and are comfortable staying off the water until the first tournament of the year. Not me. My confidence level stays high and instincts sharp the more I fish, so I’ve made it a point to fish more often this fall and winter than in years past. This has given me an opportunity to work on some new techniques and familiarize myself with some new baits as well.
The only way for me to determine if I should add a new lure to my arsenal is to fish with it. I want to know several things, like how line size affects the lure’s action, does it perform well at both slow and fast retrieves, and can I customize the bait to be more effective? I build my confidence in a new lure through experimentation, and ultimately, whether I catch fish on it. If I do, then it’s worth adding to my arsenal.