Today, we are going to take a look at the best fishing poles for kids that you can buy and introduce your children to the amazing sport/hobby of fishing.
I want to start this off by sharing a childhood story. I was 7 years old and my old man decided to take me with his friends for fishing. I remember that day vividly, I was so excited and I remember asking my father a million questions, and most importantly if I would catch fish. My old man said yes son, you will get your first catch today, and that is when I started looking forward to my day. We set up on a dock and my father pulled a worm from a cup and taught me how to bait a hook, after some time I got it done, it wasn’t perfect but I was so proud of my self. I cast my bait and was just waiting there getting bored.
Some 30 minutes passed that felt like a lifetime and there it was something was pulling my pole and it was a pretty terrifying moment, that is when my father coached me how to reel the monster in. After a minute later I pulled a measly 7-inch fish which felt like I caught a shark, the best moment of my life. From there on I still haven’t missed a weekend without fishing, well except for my wedding week.
The biggest reason that I was so hooked was that my father taught me well and was patient with me, but also because he equipped me with the best gear for kids. If you want to give your child a good hobby for them to follow up their whole lives and reminisce you from time to time, I would recommend you to invest in some quality fishing pole that is specifically made for children.
While you can also get away with investing in whatever gear for fishing when you are teaching your children, the experience will be much better for them. Remember fishing must be fun and relaxing and if it is intimidating from the start you are doing something wrong. Besides, it is your task to teach your child how to fish and make it enjoyable for them. If you want to do just that, carry on with this guide as I will show you the best options, what you should factor in before buying and give you some hints and tips to make the learning process more enjoyable. Let’s get on with it, shall we?
Top 7 Best Fishing Poles For Kids
The options listed here are all chosen based on my personal experience with teaching children fishing, market research, reviews, and also expert consultation. These are all fail-safe choices, tested personally, and will deliver your child a priceless experience. Without further ado, let’s dive deeper into it.
7. IEBIYO Fishing Pole
As I said there are tons of fishing poles available for children, and one of ht most interesting combo packages was the IEBIYO Fishing Pole. An entry-level fishing pole for children coming in with a nice set of accessories and a great design overall.
Like every fishing pole on this list, the IEBIYO Fishing Pole is dedicated and built specifically for children, so you can teach the basics of fishing to them. This product got my curiosity since it had an interesting handle, a telescopic body and already had a line in the reel from the get-go, so you can start fishing.
The IEBIYO Fishing Pole has some interesting set of specs and features that make it pretty interesting. For example, the rod of the combo has a fiberglass construction, and it has soft rubber on the handle for comfort. The whole thing weighs 35cm when it is retracted and can expand up to 55.1-inches. There are 6 adjustable positions so you can adjust it for your child’s needs, and overall it looks pretty good on paper.
The IEBIYO Fishing Pole comes in a pretty nice package, with the fishing rod, line, reel and a waterproof bag for it. The bag proved to be pretty useful as you can pack everything you may need for your fishing trip. The IEBIYO Fishing Pole felt pretty good in the hand and it was pretty attractive especially for children.
In terms of performance and feel the IEBIYO Fishing Pole wasn’t the most advanced in the market, nor the most efficient. However, you will teach the basics of fishing to your child and deliver a priceless experience in the process, pretty fun to use overall. Well worth its price, a must-try combo.
6. Shakespeare Salamander
Coming up next we have a little more advanced option which comes from our favorite brand Shakespeare, the Salamander. The Shakespeare Salamander is the perfect combo rod and reel for a little more experienced kids, designed for excellent spin casting experience.
Let’s get this out of the way first, the Shakespeare Salamander is not designed for absolute beginners, and if you buy it for a beginner they will have a hard time. This fishing pole is for more experienced kids and even adults, and I wanted to see whether it can deliver a good and proper spin casting experience.
In terms of features and performance, the Shakespeare Salamander comes with a nice combination of them that appears pretty efficient in the paper. I should mention first that the length of this rod is at 4 feet 6-inches, which is a little long but good enough. It is made from tubular glass though, that delivers great sensitivity and control, but it is a little stiff and heavy for smaller children. It comes with a 6-lbs line which is pre-spooled and overall I like the spin casting reel of it.
From the first impression, you would guess that Shakespeare Salamander is prepared to get things done. It has a nice quality build that feels sturdy and substantial. Like I said, in the beginning, it should be a little too much for a younger child but for teens, it might be the best bet, especially for spin casting.
Moving on from the initial experience, Shakespeare Salamander delivered a great performance, which was pretty much adequate for fishing. From the first cast, I found out that the Shakespeare Salamander can deliver a proper performance, albeit a little stiff and heavy it is extremely fun to use.
5. PLUSINNO Telescopic
Coming up next I have a full package that will get your child into fishing instantly, with the PLUSINNO Telescopic. This telescopic fishing pole for children will deliver a proper angling experience even to the absolute beginners, the company promised a lot with this one, let’s take a closer look.
The PLUSINNO Telescopic has delivered a lot of value-based combo reels and rods, but I think this is the best from their lineup since it delivers excellent value for the price, and it is specifically designed for children. I was pretty excited when I ordered this and wanted to see whether or not it can make things easy and fun for children.
In terms of features and performance, the PLUSINNO Telescopic combo rod and reel are pretty rich as we will see. I should state at first that the whole thing is made from durable and flexible plastic, not any kind of fancy material at its 4-feet length. It is pretty lightweight though at just 2.2-ounces. the spool is made out of aluminum and it is pretty large at that. The gear ratio is 5.2:1, and the handle is interchangeable for lefties and righties.
The PLUSINNO Telescopic comes with tons of accessories in its package so it was a nice unboxing experience. In the package, besides the rod and reel, you will find the tackle box, a good traveling bag, tons of lures, jig heads, and a lot more accessories. The body of the pole looked pretty adorable and comfortable in hands.
Plusinno makes great fishing rods, and most of their fishing rods are very budget-friendly. That’s why, i always recommend their fishing rods to people that ask me about them.
In terms of performance, I found out that the PLUSINNO Telescopic felt pretty good in hands. It is extremely easy to use and will deliver a priceless experience to your child. I think that this is one of the best tools to get your child to learn fishing. Extremely worth its price point and it is a nice combo to learn on.
4. Zebco Dock Demon
Moving on with our list and nearing to the top three we have the Zebco Dock Demon. This is an extremely capable model that is dedicated to youngsters but can deliver e a priceless performance at the fraction of the price of some of its competitors. Small but mighty.
The Zebco Dock Demon might be dedicated for kids and children, however, it is pretty capable of delivering a great spin-casting experience, don’t mistake it for a weak tool. I have taught several children with the Zebco Dock Demon and the experience has always been pleasant, nothing to be concerned here.
Taking a look at the feature and spec list of the Zebco Dock Demon you will see that it packs a lot despite being very affordable. It is packed with a 30-inch fiberglass rod that is extremely sturdy and just long enough. It has a gear ratio of 4.3:1 and the action is moderate to go along with its medium power. It has an excellent anti-reverse system called QuickSet and overall the graphite spool with the ball bearing system promise a lot.
The Zebco Dock Demon looks pretty much ready to get its hands dirty with its black handle and spool with red accents scattered on the spool and rod. The handle was pretty comfortable to hold with the EVA material and the reeling handle is excellent as well. Great first impression with this beast.
The fishing performance of this was pretty much excellent and it will always be my go-to gift choice for my nephews and nieces. The casting performance was adequate and it delivered a comfortable and joyful fishing experience to the children, while also allowing them to get their first catches. Definitely one of the best in the market.
3. Shakespeare Youth Fishing Kit
Coming up next here we have an interesting fishing pole for kids, the Shakespeare Youth Fishing Kit. This kit is designed by the company with cartoon character designs to make them more approachable for children.
This is a pretty affordable rod and reel combo made by the company and it is dedicated for younger children that can’t handle bigger rods, but that want to participate in the activities. I had no realistic expectations from this combo, to be honest, but some experts were praising the company’s efforts here.
The performance and feature spec list of the Shakespeare Youth Fishing Kit were not long or something impressive but they were good enough for its intended purpose. The Shakespeare Youth Fishing Kit is a 2 foot 6-inch fishing with a spin casting reel on its body with a medium rod power. It has an incredible on and off anti-reverse bearing, anodized aluminum spool and an EVA handle and knob to give comfort to your child.
The Shakespeare Youth Fishing Kit comes in a wide range of different designs that are based on the favorite characters from cartoons and children’s movies. There are superhero designs as well, possibilities are endless. The Shakespeare Youth Fishing Kit was pretty light in the hands and I didn’t expect much of it, to be honest.
Shakespeare doesn’t make a lot of fishing rods for kids, but when they do, they make it top notch.
In terms of performance, it will deliver a great first experience to children ranging from 4 to 7 years old, but after that, you are going to need a bigger and better combo, but for that age range, it is great. For the price it comes at, it is well worth a try.
2. Lanaak Kids Combo
If you want the package that will have everything covered and will be ready to fish right out of the box, you should get the Lanaak Kids Combo. This fishing rod combo and package is designed from the company to provide a complete experience and startup kit for your children.
Like every fishing pole on this list, the Lanaak Kids Combo, like its name implies is dedicated to children, however, thanks to its length, I think that even beginner adults can give it a try. I wanted to see whether this package can really provide a good experience, let’s take a closer look.
Looking at the spec list of this fishing rod and reel combo you will see that it delivers a lot. It comes as a 65-inch telescopic rod with a spin casting reel that was extremely easy to cast. The handle had an EVA coating and it is already pre-spooled from the factory with 200 feet of the 8-lb test line.
Moving on the Lanaak Kids Combo delivered quite the first impression since in its package you will get tons of accessories and tools for the best fishing experience. You will spot a carrying bag in it, a tackle box, loaded with 2 floating bobbers, 10 hooks, 10 split sinkers, 10 swivels, 2 jig heads, plastic worms and so much more. The rod itself felt pretty light and was excellent in the hands of a great first impression.
From the first cast, I found out that the Lanaak Kids Combo was pretty good at its job, and the spin casting reel delivered a great experience as well. It worked well at various lengths and your child can slowly progress to larger lengths. An extremely value-rich package definitely a powerful tool to have in your arsenal.
1. Shakespeare Youth Ugly Stik GX2
Coming up to the top of the list we have the definite best fishing pole for kids, the Shakespeare Youth Ugly Stik GX2. This fishing pole is packed with the same features as the original Ugly Stik GX2 combo but is modified to deliver a better experience for younger fishermen.
This is the perfect tool for younger fishermen, not the best for absolute beginners and younger children, but if your child is about 10 years old and shows interest in this it will deliver a great experience to them. I found out that the Shakespeare Youth Ugly Stik GX2 while testing the legacy Ugly Stik GX2, and it delivered a priceless experience.
The Shakespeare Youth Ugly Stik GX2 is definitely an advanced combo rod and reel, and the spec sheet shows it. The Shakespeare Youth Ugly Stik GX2 is a two-piece medium action fishing rod with a length of 5 feet 6-inches. It has a perfect construction of graphite and fiberglass delivering lightweight and durability, while still offering sensitivity. I should mention that the EVA grips are perfect for smaller hands and the aluminum spool with the ball bearings delivers smooth performance.
The Shakespeare Youth Ugly Stik GX2 looks like an adult fishing rod combo right from the get-go, and its performance is enough for an adult as well. However, it has some good features such as lighter body and lighter action to make the whole ordeal better for children.
To be honest I had a blast catching fish with the Shakespeare Youth Ugly Stik GX2 combo rod and reel. It delivered a priceless experience with plenty of smoothness and great responsiveness, definitely the best overall. With its affordable price and tons of features, it is extremely worth trying.
Things You Should Look Out For When Buying A Fishing Pole For Kids
The most important thing you have to look out for when buying a fishing pole for kids is to factor in the length of the pole. While you, personally can handle a 9-foot pole, it is not feasible or even realistic for a child to handle and time such a rod properly. A shorter pole will ensure that your child is safe since it can handle the rod properly and also a child can cast a shorter pole without a problem. There are also poles that are very short, but you should steer away from them and find one that is between 3 to 5 feet for the best experience. Telescopic rods are also perfect options since you can adjust their length and accommodate it as needed.
While this might also depend on the height of the rod on the age and size of the child in question, it is advisable to get the lightest one possible. The weight doesn’t just prevent your child to carry the rod, but it also may prevent your child from practicing the proper casting techniques. Also since the rod will be in your child’s hands it should not be tiring to carry and lure the fish. While you can also get away with a bit heavier rod, I would recommend the lightest rod you can so your child is never put near danger of self-injury.
Ease of Use
When it comes to best fishing poles for kids, ease of use is one of the most important factors sitting right there on top with weight and height. While you might be buying the pole for an experienced child, if you are buying it for a beginner, this is a must. There are a lot of fishing poles in the market, that are designed to deliver the easiest use and most of those have lesser moving parts. Simpler systems are much better for children, don’t try to get the most advanced, if they are a beginner they really won’t appreciate it at all. You can always get them a much more advanced one later on in their journey, but you can’t make their first impression better.
The handle of the rod should be also carefully examined before buying a fishing rod for children. This is the only place where the hands will be in contact all the time and if it is not comfortable to hold or if it is made from a material that is rough, it will not deliver a satisfactory experience even if the rod is top-notch. Also the rod should be made specifically for smaller hands. One of the most surefire ways to know whether or not the handle will be comfortable is to check if it has an EVA foam on the handle. This material is very soft to the touch but also very strong so it will be durable and will not need to be replaced. Rubber handles are great options as well. I have to stress that the importance of the handle will grow with the length of the rod, the longer the rod the more comfortable the rod should be. This is important for adults even, let alone for children with fragile and weaker hands.
The biggest factor that affects my decision making before buying a product and that is not just a rod, is its durability. The quality of the item you are planning to buy should be your foremost focus. Check to see if the rod is made from a trusted manufacturer and if it is made from durable materials. It is better to opt for a fishing rod with fiberglass or graphite, and optimally you can choose a carbon fiber rod, but not necessarily. You want the rod to last as long as possible.
Difference Between Poles & Rods
In fishing, the most important piece of gear you will have is the rod or pole. This thing allows you to lure the fish to your bait and in the end to bring it to the shore or boat. Pole and rod words are used pretty interchangeably, but there are some slight differences, and I will clear some air out before moving on with this guide.
Pole fishing means that you are working with a fixed amount of line that is attached to the stick. Most of the poles you will find in the market are made out of natural materials like cane or bamboo, and you can even make a pole yourself from a stick or a broomstick. They are pretty simple and the bare-bones fishing experience, and that is exactly why they are so unique. This might seem pretty old school method, however, there are some people that practice it every time with poles made out of ultra-advanced materials.
Rod fishing, on the other hand, describes the fishing method where you use a long lever with eyes to guide the line from the reel. Rods are mostly made from graphite, fiberglass, or even carbon fiber in some cases, which are lightweight, flexible and strong. This is how fishing is done most of the time in modern times and I would recommend you to buy a rod for your child to teach them properly and make their experience more enjoyable.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Q: Are kids fishing poles safe?
A: While fishing comes with its own dangers like any other activity, however, relatively it is pretty safe. The equipment that you choose for your child will also affect the safety levels, but if you read the guide or choose a product from the top picks, you won’t put your child in harm’s way.
Q: Should I buy a combo or a separate rod and reel for my kid?
A: This will mostly depend on the skill level of your child. For example, if they are a little more experienced you can experiment with different equipment like rods and reels. However, if they are a beginner it is better to choose a combo rod and reel since they are balanced in terms of performance.
At last, we have come to the end! To conclude I would like to say that whatever you do, try to make the experience more enjoyable for your children. If they do not enjoy it, they won’t practice it in the future, and the fishing time will seem like a chore. Remember to not overload your child’s brain with technicalities and let’s admit it that is boring. On top of that it is pretty hard to keep their attention, so keep things simple and enjoyable, let them have fun.
If you stick with the tips and criteria above, you won’t make any mistake when it comes to fishing poles for kids neither now and in the future as well. Also if you choose one of the picks that I have included in this list you won’t have to worry about much since they deliver the most for their money and are handpicked by me specifically for children. So you won’t have to worry about too much. Once again remember to have fun and enjoy your father-son bonding time, until next time.