What Is Fishing Rod Power?

What is Fishing Rod Power

Whether you are a newcomer at fishing or looking for a new rod to add to your equipment, selecting a fishing rod is challenging. You have to decide the length, type, style, and power of the rod. You are familiar with rod types and styles; but, you do not know what fishing rod power is and why is it important?

What is fishing rod power? Fishing rod power refers to the pressure or force required to flex the rod during fishing. Rod power comes in different ranges and ratings, determining the lure weights and line sizes it can handle. It would help if you decided where you want to fish and what fishing method you prefer to select the fishing rod power.

Does the fishing rod power intrigue you? Are you wondering if the rod power and action are the same things? If yes, then read this article until the end to learn all about fishing rod power.

Detailed Information About Fishing Rod Power

Fishing rod power refers to the pressure required to bend the rod for fishing. The rod power is a significant ability when you have to cast distances, throw fishing bait, and lift the weight out of the water. Fishing rods with different power values are available. This value determines which rod is perfect for what kind of fishing species, their size and weight, water body, and fishing type.

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Kind Of Fishes

An ultra-light and light power is the right choice for lightweight and small fishes. Fishes like Crappies, Trout, or pan fishes are easily catchable by light power rods. In contrast, a heavy power rod helps lift large fishes out of the water, such as Catfish or Striped Bass.

Type Of Water

You have to select the power of the rod as per the water body you will fish. Saltwater fishing rods are generally thick and heavy power, while freshwater rods can be light power. However, freshwater anglers can use heavy rods for strength to lift large fishes.

Type Of Fishing

The type of fishing you will go for also decides the power rating of the rod. For instance, offshore trolling is possible with a heavy power rod. In contrast, a medium power rod is ideal for surfcasting.

How Do You determine The Power Of A Fishing Rod?

Another way to describe fishing rod power is the overall stiffness or bending ability of the rod. The rod’s thickness and material used to manufacture the rod determine its power rating. These different ratings help you find the best fishing rod for the fishing you want to do. Rods’ power rating is categorized into different levels. These levels are ultra-light, light, medium-light, medium, medium-heavy, heavy, and extra heavy. Each of these levels characterizes the distinct ability and strength of the fishing rod.


Ultra-light power fishing rods work best for lifting light fishes with a light lure and line. It is incredibly soft and easily bendable. The ideal lure weight it can handle is around 1/32 to 3/8 ounces or so. You can use ultra-light rods for fishing Trout, Crappie, Pan fishes, or Bluegill.


Light power fishing rods are slightly better in power to handle around 1/16 ounce of lure weight. You fish small fishes with this power rod, where you expect light bites of the fishes. So, the rod can feel softer touch and allow you to rewind the line. You can catch medium Pan fishes, Trout, or Walleye with this rod easily.

Medium Light

Medium-light power fishing rod is much stiffer and can lift standard-sized fishes. It is useable in both freshwater and saltwater. You can use this power rod for almost 1/8 to 1/2 ounce of lure weight. A medium-light power rod is sensitive to bites yet allows you to hook faster as it tightens quickly.


A medium-power fishing rod allows you to hook a variety of lures and weight. From freshwater to saltwater, medium power helps in fast and proper hooksets due to more stiffness. You can use it for almost 1/4 to 3/4 ounces of lure weight. It is an ideal power rod for most anglers.


Now, with a medium-heavy power rod, you move towards the heavy power. It is much stiffer, and you can use it for larger fishes. Also, it is soft enough to feel, and you can use it for fishing soft plastics. This rod is ideal for lures up to 1 ounce.


A heavy power fishing rod is stiff enough to fish larger fishes. It can handle heavier lines and lures and struggle with large species. You can use it to take up to 4 ounces of lure weight for deep structure fishing.

Extra Heavy

An extra heavy power fishing rod is the stiffest rod in the line. It handles the most challenging fish species. Also, it is capable of loading quicker hook sets and grabs hold of massive fishes. You can use it for lure with more than 2 ounces of range.

What Power Fishing Rod Do I Need?

You select the right power of the fishing rod according to the size of the targeted fish. For small fishes, such as Panfish, you use light tackle and bait, so a light power rod is best for it. Further, for standard-sized fishes like Walleye, a medium power rod can handle regular or standard lures. Lastly, to capture larger fishes like Bass, you use larger baits easily manageable by heavy power rods.

Hence, choosing an appropriate fishing rod determines the type of fishing and fish species you are targeting. Based on this, you can decide what power rod would be necessary for you.

How Long Should A Fishing Rod Be?

Length is another one of the factors that you should look for in the fishing rods. Rod’s length determines how far you can cast the line. You will find different ranges of fishing rods, from short to long. Short fishing rods are easy to handle and control, but you cannot cast at a long distance. In contrast, longer fishing rods are difficult to handle, but you can throw the line at long distances.

The length of the rod should match the type of fishing you are doing. For instance, if you are fishing at the water bank or wading, then a longer rod of more than eight feet is ideal. But, if you fish from a kayak or boat, a short rod of about five to seven feet would be easy to handle.

For beginners, a length of about seven feet would be the right choice.

What Is A Fishing Rod Made Of?

Two types of material are commonly used in the manufacturing of fishing rods: graphite and fiberglass. Graphite or carbon fiber is light material fiberglass. But, it gives sensitivity to the fishing rods. Although graphite is strong, any sudden jolts or shocks can crack the structure.

In comparison, fiberglass is stiffer and lacks sensitivity. It can take endure and take the abuse of the harsh environment. Also, they are inexpensive than graphite rods. A fishing rod composite of both graphite and fiberglass is an ideal rod for functioning and strength.

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Difference Between Rod Power And Rod Action

The rod power describes how much pressure a rod takes to bend. But, the rod action means how and where the rod will bend under pressure. You can also describe rod action about how easily and far from the tip, a rod bends. Fishing rod power and action are different concepts, yet they integrate to complete a rod’s function.

Moreover, rod action is also categorized as fast, moderate, and slow action. Fast action rods bend near the tip and give an instant response. Medium action rods flex near the middle and give a slow response. Lastly, slow action rods bend down the rod length and at the rear end and provide the slowest response.


Fishing rod power determines where you can fish and what type of fishes you can target. So, choosing a fishing rod power according to your requirement and demand is imperative. Once you have the right power rod for yourself, fishing can become an exciting and exhilarating activity.

Steve Hudson

I have been an outdoor activities enthusiast from teenage. I have been going out with my parents on different outdoor activities such as camping and hiking. After moving to a town surrounded by three well known fishing spots, I started fishing and started using all kinds of tricks and equipment to make the most out of each adventure I pursued. Over the years I have been camping outdoor, hiking and following my passion of enjoying life at full. Few years ago, I started writing about my thoughts, experiments and ideas about outdoor, fishing, hiking and more. This blog is a compilation of that plus tips, ideas and products that can make life more meaningful, enjoyable and a pleasant.

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