Simplified comparison of all jigging styles

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Hi there, firstly thank you for your wonderful website! I am newbie learning about jigging and found your information very useful to me.

I am still quite confused about the different type of jigging, like what’s consider normal jigging, high speed jigging, slow pitch (more or less I understand from your website), long fall jigging, micro jigging, etc. Hope you can put up something simplified view on the different on these?

This is a challenging question for me.

Simplify.

Yes. Sure. I will try.

Hi-speed jigging is the conventional style. That was how everyone used to do jigging since before the invention of PE line. There are some variations, but it’s basically fast reeling, up-up-up actions with occasional pause.

Micro jigging was originally a mini casting game onshore. It uses tiny, a few centimeter long metal jig to catch small fish like horse mackerel and small rockfish. Then it’s found its way to offshore with a little bigger jig, but still low-profile, no bigger than 5cm (2 inch), made of tungsten and weights 40g or so. The action is not really categorized, but it’s basically close to hi-speed jigging with a lot of shakes.

Slow pitch, high pitch and longfall are all the variations of the same concept created by Sato Sensei. And this is what we talk about here on this site.

Simplified comparison

Let’s see if I can do this.

Hi-speed Micro Jig High Pitch Slow Pitch Long Fall
Typical Tackle spinning spinning overhead overhead overhead
Rod Tapers
(typical)
fast, regular regular slow slow slow
Typical jig long or semi-long, pointy head micro jig long or semi-long, non-symmetry leafy, non-symmetry, center-balanced leafy, non-symmetry, center-balanced
Main Actions fast lifts
jerk up
pause
fast lifts
shake
pause
impact lifts
hangtime
variable lifts
hangtime
falls
slow lifts
long falls
rod actions continuum
45°
continuum
0° – 45°
intervals
90°
intervals
0° – 180°
intervals
180°
Impact in actions medium medium strong soft very soft
Frequency of
repetitive actions
high high very low low very low
Vertical movement fast medium slow slow slow
Horizontal movement little little wide medium little
Efficiency when
not being vertical
OK Efficient OK No good OK

Oh no… I think I’m just confusing people. The harder I try, the more difficult I make it, it seems like. Especially for the beginners. Now I’m sorry that I tried.

You know what?

It doesn’t matter, really.

The categorization doesn’t do any good in the field.

The important thing is that you feel the movement of the jig.
If you do, I have a good chance with any of these styles. And you will know how important it is to stay vertical.
If you don’t feel your jig, you are probably just hanging your jig in mid-water. You’ve lost your jig to the water. No way to catch fish with any style of jigging. You’d better change something, use lighter line and heavier jig, change jigging styles, or change your boat operation or location. Or forget jigging and grab bait!

Slow pitch teaches you so much about the vertical game in which the water influence is substantial. It’s the biology and the physics, in such details and extremes. If you are just looking quickly for “the best jig” that brings you a lot of fish, it’s a boring class, I’m sure. You really should drop it. I really hate to explain it when people send me an inquiry to ask “Hey, what is your best jig?”

But if you study patiently and keep going back and forth between the field and this website, you will understand that the basic principles are pretty simple. And you can apply your knowledge to a lot of different styles of fishing.

For those whom the visuals help,
Slow Pitch Video Gallery →

Good luck!

  1. Ed
    Ed03-16-2015

    Great post for newbie like me?! Thanks for the summary table which explained the overview of the different techniques! 🙂

    • Totos
      Totos03-24-2015

      I’m glad the information is helpful for you Ed. Good luck!

  2. sameh
    sameh03-24-2015

    on slow pitch short jerks or long jerks when jig is on way down, should line be stretched (rod controlling its speed down) or line not streched (rod exceeding the jig down, line not streched) and free falling naturally)?

    • Totos
      Totos03-25-2015

      Hi Sameh.
      Good question.
      The initial drop down to the bottom should be as fast as it can be. Because the slow pitch jigs are usually slow to fall as it performs all the actions on the way down. If it’s slow, the current takes away the line and you’ll get the line slack when you start your actions. Adjust your mechanical break and use your thumbing to find the fastest fall. It’s usually faster with a little tension. Because when the jig is free to fall, it can lay on its side and do actions where are totally unnecessary.

      Once you start your actions, the standard procedure is the opposite. You want the jig to make actions as it falls. Biologically, it’s the sign of weakness. You don’t want to put on tension. However, we don’t think it’s a good idea to lower the tip faster than the jig and give line slack on the water. Contact can come anytime during the fall. Lower the tip at the same speed of the jig, so that you have mutual tension on the line, not too tight, not too loose.

      But there is non-standard procedure, especially in the longfall tactic, which is to give a little tension on the fall. In longfall, the uplift should be slow and simple. And then the jig hurries back down like a bait going back to a hide. It’s a hesitating move of the bait. Also a sign of weakness. Giving a little tension on the fall changes the fall actions, and it can be very effective sometimes.

      • Kitidas Punyashthiti
        Kitidas Punyashthiti03-25-2015

        Hi Totos,
        Your answer to Sameh is very important piece of advice that should be shared to all novice slow pitch jiggers. Please put it on the “Techniques” section of JAS.
        Regards,
        Kitidas P.

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