Fly Fishing Gear - Fly Rods

Fly Rod Action:
The action of a rod is a description of the flex in the rod when it is bending. Actions are
usually described as fast, medium or slow, and other increments, such as medium fast,
medium slow, etc.

Rods that flex near the tip are referred to as “fast” action rods where as rods that bend
or flex uniformly throughout most of the rod’s length are referred to as “slow” action rods.
Unfortunately, there are no standard rules to follow when it comes to a manufacturer’s
description of action.

There are some variations in the terms used to describe action from one manufacturer to
another. For example, one manufacturer uses "tip flex" action for fast tip actions, "mid
flex" action for actions between fast and slow actions, and "full flex" for slow actions.  

In other words, the action of a fly rod refers to where the rod flexes. Action will determine
the tempo of one's casting stroke. Fast action rods generate more line speed..In general,
it takes a little less effort to cast farther with a fast action rod.

Fast to moderately fast rod actions allow you to throw tighter loops with less wind
resistance and greater distances. They are used for many saltwater applications as well
as big river applications. These rods are preferred by many for nymph fishing and
casting streamers. They generally require quicker, shorter fly casting strokes than other

Moderate to slow action rods provide a smoother, softer action and make it easier to
make the roll and mend cast. They are a little easier to cast than a fast action. Many
anglers prefer this action for fishing dry flies. It is used for a wide range of fishing

Slow action rods are also more forgiving and cover up casting errors better than fast
action rods. It's also easier to feel the rod loading. Some angler think a slow action is
better for close-in accuracy. Slow actions help protect light tippets. It is typical of older
rod actions, whereas fast actions are relatively new.

the fly rod action you want in a fly rod depends on the species of fish you will be fly
fishing for and where you will be fly fishing. If you intend to fish for big trout on a big river
then a fast action may be the thing. If you plan on fly fishing a spring creek then you may
prefer a medium or slow action fly rod.
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