FORMER Australian and Brisbane Heat cricketer Nathan Reardon is advocating for overworked and stressed Australians to go fishing to escape their everyday this Christmas season.
Fishing has become the nation’s largest participatory sport and leisure activity, with about five million Australians involved in recreational and charter fishing activities each year. Studies show fishing builds strength, flexibility and fitness, is great for youth development, and helps with breast cancer recovery and positive mental health outcomes. Following a 12-year professional cricketing career, representing Australia in two Twenty20 matches, Nathan Reardon created Outside Edge Adventures: an adventure tour company which organises fishing and holiday trips across Australia and the Pacific.
Nathan said it’s unsurprising Australians are choosing to fish more than ever, given Australians are feeling stressed and overworked – and he can certainly relate. Recent data indicates 35 percent of men and 42 percent of women in Australia often, or always, feel pressed for time, leading to high rates of stress.
Swapping the bat for the rod to beat stress and burnout
“While I loved playing professional cricket – it also came with its stresses and pressure,” Nathan said. “Fishing was – and still is – my way of escaping my every day, resetting and ensuring I have
the balance needed for work and life. For me, and millions of other Australians, it’s one of the best ways to relax. You’re surrounded by nature, the sea, fresh air and mates, away from technology and life’s stresses, while giving your body a work-out with casting and reeling in a great catch.”
Why Australians need to unplug this Christmas
While Australians are more stressed than ever, research shows we’re not taking the time off we need to unplug. Australians aren’t using their holiday leave entitlements, with more than 133 million days of unused annual leave left accrued at the end of 2016. This kind of breakdown in work-life balance leads many Australians to experience burnout, which can cause coronary disease, gastrointestinal issues and hypertension, and mental health conditions such as depression, anxiety and substance abuse.
“This Christmas, it’s more important than ever to plan a holiday or way to unplug. Both girls and guys need it – but we don’t prioritise it,” Nathan said. “Making time to escape the daily grind is more important than ever – for yourself, your family and career. Often the reason is we don’t have time to plan the break we need, or it all becomes too difficult to know what to do and where to book. I created Outside Edge Adventures to take the stress and burden of preparation out of planning a holiday or fishing experience,” he said.
Over the Christmas holiday season, Outside Edge Adventures is coordinating fishing tours in Noosa and Moreton Bay – as well as other remote destinations. “We’ve created the tours, so people can just show up and enjoy an unforgettable experience that’s both relaxing and fun,” Nathan said. “A love for the water and coastal regions is embedded in our Australian culture – and with
the temperatures already on the rise, this Christmas season is ideal to spend some time away on a fishing tour with family and friends,” he said.
Tips for fishing over the summer season:
Nathan’s top tips for those wanting to try their hands at fishing over summer include:
● Don’t knock it until you try it – “There’s a reason more than 5 million Australians tackle fishing. From reaping the mental and physical benefits involved from escaping the stress of your everyday to revelling in the excitement of a catch with mates.”
● Know your location – Nathan’s top three locations for Summer fishing:
▪ Gladstone, QLD – Summer provides the optimal chance for anglers to target the impoundment Barramundi in Gladstone
▪ Northern NSW – the river systems of Northern New South Wales open at this time of year for recreational fishers to catch the iconic Murray Cod
▪ Noosa, QLD – This season, the pelagic species of Mackerel, Acres of Tuna and Black Marlin will be on display for keen fishers
● Get a fishing guide – “We don’t physically have time in our lives to be experts at fishing, so being with a guide – especially one that’s local – helps you learn the ropes quickly and without stress.”
● Plan! – “A lot of people who don’t know much about fishing probably think you put a bit of bait on the hook and throw it into the water. But, there’s a lot of preparation needed before a successful trip – like finding the right kind of boat, rod, bait, region and feeding times.”
● Be teachable – “Even the world’s best fisherman or fisherwoman is still learning how to improve their techniques. Doing your research or learning from a guide or expert can give you new perspective and skills.”
● Try things that you haven’t tried before – “There are other options than just using fish off the bank. Be open minded to the alternate fishing styles out there.”
● Explore new destinations – “Travelling to different places can take your fishing to a whole different level. We create bucket-list fishing trips, to help you catch those elusive species like the black bass or marlin and challenge your fishing game.”
To book a fishing tour with Outside Edge Adventures this Christmas, contact Nathan via info@OutsideEdgeAdventures.com.au or phone 0423 489 545.
Outside Edge Adventures is a Brisbane-based outdoor adventure tour company led by former professional cricketer Nathan Reardon, providing clients with a premium range of customised fishing experiences in Australia and abroad.
Visit www.outsideedgeadventures.com.au for more details.