Many people enjoy the isolation and relaxation fishing can bring about. However, others might not realize the hobby can improve an individual’s mental health in numerous ways including:

Increased Sunlight Exposure

In many instances, fishing adherents spend many hours on a boat or perched atop a dock gaining significant sunlight exposure. Sunlight contains a vital nutrient known as Vitamin D. This substance helps stimulate systemic production of mood hormones such as dopamine and serotonin. Release of these chemicals has been known to enhance a person’s mood and reduce their chances of developing mental health issues like anxiety and depression. 

Improved Cognitive Functions

Fishing can enhance someone’s cognitive functions. The activity requires a significant degree of concentration. Many long hours may be spent in one location. Moreover, catching fish often requires paying close attention to the surroundings and not allowing oneself to become distracted. Furthermore, those who fish often must learn to plan and strategize. Hooking that prized catch could hinge on a participant’s ability to gauge water temperatures, utilizing the most efficient rod or placing the most optimal bait on the lure. 

Reduced Stress

People who spend time on or near water often experience stress reduction. Fishing is typically a quiet activity where few people are present. Moreover, fishing lovers are not exposed to common stress-inducing issues like loud noises, ringing phones, traffic and work responsibilities.

Balanced Hormonal Levels

The tranquility precipitated by most fishing excursions can elicit hormonal balances. Scientific studies have concluded that fishing adherents experience a reduction of a potentially detrimental chemical known as cortisol. More commonly known as a “stress hormone,” chronic or excessive exposure to high stress levels often precipitate a systemic release of this chemical. Over time, elevated cortisol concentrations can lead to serious health disorders like a compromised immune system, high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease. 


Fishing requires significant hand-eye coordination. Participants need to familiarize themselves with and master skills such as precision casting, stringing a fishing line, properly holding a rod, eyeing the water and reeling in fish at the moment they take the bait and become hooked. 


While fishing will never be placed in the same discussion with weight training, adherents do obtain a certain degree of beneficial exercise. Healthcare professionals consider casting a rod enough exercise to stimulate blood flow and brighten one’s mood.