How to Use a Spinning Reel | Step by Step Guide for New Anglers

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If you are a new angler who’s just using their spinning reel for the first time, then it’s time you learned how to use the reel properly. While you can always get a seasoned angler to help you, there are many other ways to get a grip on your spinning reel if there is no one around to give you the nudge that you need.

One of the ways is to read our post. Reading expert posts and guides can also leave you with a better reeling experience at any time. So do you want to know how to use a spinning reel? If you do, this is your lucky day too.

In this post, we show every new angler how to use a spinning reel by following a step-by-step guide that’s easy to master. Take a look.

Step-by-Step Guide on How to Use a Spinning Reel

Before I get down to telling you what you should do, it is important to let you know that these steps must be followed in the order that I will put them below.

Read More: The Pflueger Supreme XT Spinning Reel Review

Step I: Assemble your Outfit

The very first thing that you must do is to assemble your reeling outfit.  Follow the user manual to assemble your reel. Make sure that you also tie on your practice plug so that you don’t hook yourself while learning. Use an improved clinch knot then set your drag.

Step II: Hold Your Fishing Rod

Once you have assembled your outfit, the next thing that you must do is to hold your fishing rod using your most dominant hand (the hand that you use). While doing this, keep your reel a little bit below the fishing rod.

This should place the reel in its right position, which is between the middle finger and the ring finger. Nonetheless, if the reel feels much better and more comfortable among your other fingers, then you can go with them.

Step III: Pull Out Your Line

Net you should pull out or, in other words, reel in your fishing line until you get just about six inches of the fishing line hanging outright from the tip and then slowly turn the reel’s handle until your line’s roller sits directly underneath the index finger.

Step IV: Hold the Line

Now hold your fishing line against your fishing rod using the crook of the index finger. It would be best if you used a light touch. Once you have done this, you should then open your bail. This is very important when you are learning how to use a spinning reel.

Step V: Point Your Line to the Target

With the bait already set on your line. It is time to lure in the catch. So take your time and make sure that you set your line out towards your target.

Step VI: Bring Your Rod to Position

The moment the line is drawn for the target or the catch, the next thing that you should do is to put your rod in the position. This is a vertical position that allows you to have an easy and comfortable hold on the rod.

To do that easily, you should simply use one smooth motion to bring up your fishing rod onto that position.

Step VII: Allow the Rod to Flex

Having a rigid rod can leave you with a very bad experience when angling. As such, you must allow your fishing rod to flex. The flex is when the tip of the fishing rod bends back towards you. It is also referred to as “loading” the fishing rod.

Once the rod flexes, do not pause; instead, begin to push your fishing rod forward using your elbow and wrist but not with your shoulder.

Step VIII: Let go Of the Line

You can now let go of the fishing line. Do this when the tip of the rod is halfway. Upon doing this, the lure will be sent flying to the target. Remember that everything in this step relies on perfect timing.

NOTE: If you notice that your plug went straight up into the air, then the line was released too early. However, if it plug crashed at your feet, then you released it too late. Timing is everything here.

Step IX: Close the Bail

Use your free hand to close the bail. The reason why you should close it by hand is simple. Doing so will easily eliminate all the loops that might have sat on the line, which often come up when turning the reel’s handle to engage your bail. This prevents the loops from tangling up in your follow-up casting.

It is that simple. Now you know how to cast your spinning reel. You can practice more so that you get the perfect grip on the whole process. Remember that practice leads to perfection, or so it is said.

Frequently Asked Questions

To leave you with a better understanding of how to cast your spinning reel, here are some of the most frequently asked questions that you can go by:

On which side should the handle sit on a spinning reel?

The handle should sit on the right side. This is because most spinning reels were traditionally set with the handle on the right side. As such, they were often designed for the right-handed casters, which means that the rod would be switched to the left hand so that the reel would be easily cranked by your right hand.

What are the spinning reels good for?

The spinning reels are some of the best reels for both the young and the old anglers. This is because they are very easy to use and come with an open-face reeling technology that will easily complement its lightweight setup. The reels are also good for the live baits and are therefore ideal for beginner fishermen.


Any new angler who is learning how to use a spinning reel will find it easy to work with this guide. The guide is comprehensive and leaves many anglers with a straight touch to what they might need.

The model is also easy to follow and will hardly leave any newbie with a complex thought when practicing. Good luck out there, and have a great time when casting your next spinning reel. Remember this; timing is everything when letting go of the line.

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