As with many aspects of fishing gear, personal preference plays a large role. For example, when comparing split grip rods to the standard full grip rod type, there are reasons which can influence angler selection. Here are some factors which may help you decide if split grip fishing rods are right for you.
1. Weight Reduction
Split grip rods are missing part of the grip and have more of the “blank” (interior rod component) exposed. A full grip may weigh several ounces more, but it adds up over time and hundreds of casts. Rod builder, Mike Woodward of Woody’s Custom Rods, prefers split grip fishing rods for almost all his rods because “it is lighter and easier to cast and work for a long day.
The jury is still out here. In a Bassmaster article by Mark Hicks, Kevin VanDam is convinced that with more of the blank exposed, sensitivity increases. But pro angler David Fritts still prefers full length grips for his style of fishing.
Woodward also feels that split grip fishing rods paired with a baitcaster help his accuracy especially in situations like trying to skip lures under docks. But for just chucking larger lures long distances, he’ll grab a full grip.
Sometimes the differences between fishing equipment can be subtle and species or situation specific. For example, I’ve read of some anglers that like the way split grip rods can be helpful if you tuck under your arm for final stages of landing a big fish. Other times, the differences are just aesthetic. But if it looks good and you like the feel of it, you’ll keep casting. And that is the whole point, right?