fishing rods


If you are new to fishing and looking to purchase your first fishing rod, the ratings probably seem a little bit confusing. In reality, they are not difficult to understand once you get your head around what those ratings refer to. The ratings become more useful as your fishing skill and experience increases.

Fishing rods are easier to understand if you differentiate power and action so you can understand those ratings when you are confronted with them. This will help you to decide what fishing rod you want to use.


The power of a fishing rod is a rating that is used to let you know the level of stiffness in the rod. Note, you will often see fishing rods described as blanks. That’s the main part of the fishing rod without anything attached. Fishing rod power ratings include the very lightest at Ultra-Light, Light and then continue through Medium-Light, Medium, Medium-Heavy, Heavy through to Extra Heavy.


The action of the rod is also a rating but this rating describes how the rod bends when it is loaded with weight. For example, the faster the action of the fishing rod, the more it will bend towards the tip of the rod versus it bending in the middle of the rod. The slower the action of the rod, the further it bends towards the middle of the fishing rod.

An extra-fast fishing rod will bend near the very top the fishing rod. A fast fishing rod bends around the first third of the rod from the top. Moderate action fishing rods bend around the middle and slow fishing rods will have a smooth bend throughout the whole fishing rod when under load.


Now that we have taken a look at those characteristics and ratings often used to describe fishing rods, we can take a look at how they will come into play when fishing. For example, fast action fishing rods bend closer to the tip and therefore use less of the fishing rod to cast. You will also notice that fast fishing rods also tend to recover much faster after casting. After casting, you will see that a fishing rod vibrates and the tip moves about. The shaking of the rod tip causes friction on the line and reduces the casting distance. So while faster rods can recover faster, they don’t load up as well as slower action fishing rods. Moderate action fishing rods often load up well but don’t recover as well after the cast. Loading is another way to describe how well the fishing rod bends under weight. Essentially, the more that a rod loads, the more of the fishing rod you will use to cast.

Therefore, if you can find a moderate action fishing rod that has a faster recovery, you will find that fishing rod gives you great casting ability.

Sensitivity is another issue anglers care about. You want to know when you get a bite or when your lure is moving about under the water. High modulus graphite rods are more sensitive, for example. However, as fishing rods become more sensitive, they tend to become more brittle because sensitivity and brittleness are directly related.


As you can see, there are a number of issues to consider when choosing a fishing rod that will depend on where you are fishing and what you species you are fishing for. If you are looking to buy your first fishing rod, it is best to go with a fishing rod somewhere in the middle ground with a reasonable price point from a reliable fishing brand because it will be best suited to a variety of fishing situations. In that case, it’s best to go with a fishing rod around 6-7ft with a medium power and a fast action but ultimately the decision is yours. There are plenty of spin fishing rods under $100 that are a very good choice that can be matched with a quality, yet affordable spinning reel.

It only makes sense to grade your investment in fishing as you become more experienced. You’ll notice every angler loves to have a number of fishing rods and reels. Building your own collection is something to enjoy over time.

A medium power fishing rod is also good for fishing with lures and fighting the fish will be good fun.


Is there anything you can add to this article? Share your thoughts through the comments section below.

Robert M Davies

Robert passed the "Obsessed With Fishing Test" with flying colours. Instead of talking, Robert has turned his hand to writing about his experience in fishing all around Australia.