Hooks for Slow Pitch Jigging


doublehook02Sato’s Double Hooks
This is the pre-rigged double hook from Anglers Support Service (ASS), just as how Sato Sensei makes then with Pike hooks from Decoy with PE20 with Fluoro core. Available at 1026 yen.

doublehook01ASS Double Hooks
This is the economy version by ASS, available at 598 yen. The hooks are ASS original with the hole in the eye. The assist line is knotted to the hooks, not a PR knot like the Sato’s Double Hooks.

Sato Sensei came up with this technique of slow pitch jigging in order to get contacts in the time of the day when it’s slow and no one else is getting fish. Everything had to be fine tuned. But on the other hand, he wanted to be ready for a big one with the remarkably light tackle he uses. So he’s gone around every tiny little details for finesse and power.
And that is how he constantly catches the most fish, in a good day or a bad day. He says 90% of the difference is in preparation.

IMG_1932So it’s a double hook. And the assist line has fluoro line running through PE braided so it’s very firm.
Slow pitch utilizes a lot of small actions and falling actions. The head of the jig moves up and down a lot. The firmness of the fluoro cored PE assist line keeps it away from tangling up with the leader. Still, it’s flexible enough to be swallowed by fish easily. Yet, when it comes to finding the fish to hook, non-cored PE has the advantage.
So we usually put the fluoro cored PE assist line on the head of the jig, and non-cored PE assist line on the rear of the jig. The rear hook has less chances of tangling, but when you do get the rear hook tangling, you can switch it to fluoro cored PE too. When you apply punchy slow pitch, something closer to high pitch, you get more chances of the rear hook tangling up. Because when the jig swims to the side, it’s getting close to parallel to the leader. In high pitch, you just take off the rear hook.

Fish make bites on the front of the movement, the head of the prey. When the jig is uplifting, fish bites on the head of the jig. When the jig is falling, fish bites on the rear of the jig.

Slow pitch Jigging Principles

Sato Sensei’s principles about the line system are like this;

  • The light PE that doesn’t stretch gives more control of the jig.
  • Use less metal parts in your system as possible.
  • Go for lighter line and less metals when you want contacts.
  • Always use the smallest and the toughest knots.
  • It improves the jig’s falling performances when you have hooks on the flat side of the jig.
  • Hook setting does change the jig movements. See it for yourself at the shallow water.

doublehook02The double hooks came out of these ideas. The hooks are positioned as pointing to each other. It means to get one hooked from inside of fish mouth and get the other from outside. When you hook a fish like that you’ll never unhook it, because the physics work in a way that the fish fight away only to result in hooking deeper and completely. Even when you don’t hook like that, 2 hooks assist each other, sharing the burden of fish fight. And we have 4 hooks total. It means you can use light-weight fine hooks which are easier to be swallowed. Once one hook finds the fish, the others will find some places to hook, eventually “hugging” the fish.

But the problem I see is that you can hardly release your catch. A lot of times fish get deep wounds. You need to take home and eat it.


I hope you find this article informative and helpful to you!

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  1. Kitidas Punyashthiti
    Kitidas Punyashthiti04-22-2013

    Hi Totos,
    On my recent trip to Japan, I saw these Anglers Support Service products in the stores, but didn’t get to buy any of it since I can make the double assist hook myself ( after watching Sato Sensei DVDs, of cause!). I just bought a bunch of Decoy AS-03P hooks which are hard to find here. There are several DIY kits for those who are interested available in those stores too.
    Best regards,
    Kitidas P.

    • Totos

      Thank you Kitidas. I forgot this part. I just added the article.
      I hope you are enjoying the assembly. Because I gave up the bobbin work and stay with the easy know. Good luck!!!

  2. Daz

    I cannot make the knot to the solid ring on the economy version….aaaaarrrrrrgggh!

    • Totos

      Hi Daz.
      Send me a message and tell me what the problem is.

  3. Daz

    Hi Totos
    Just wondering what brand of split ring pliers you choose to use for attaching your hooks?

    The hots rings, although strong, are small and my pliers are a bit clumsy- maybe I’m clumsy.


    • Totos

      Hi Daz.
      It’s true that slow pitch pursues such finesse that even the rings are so small.
      I used to use a bigger prier but I changed it for the same reason you have now. I now use a prier from Maria.

      But any prier will do only if it’s small enough. it’s important that you can work smoothly because we often change jigs and hooks in a hurry on the boat.

      I also bring a little prier from Shimano which I normally use in my light shore game.

      This is very popular among our fellow anglers.

  4. hazadin

    can you show the picture/illustrations of a complete rigging
    rear hooks(brand/no)+solid ring (brand/no)+ split ring(brand/no)+jig(brand/weight/colour)+split ring + solid ring + knot + leader(length) + knot + mainline (length) + rod (PE/brand/) + reel(brand/size)

    • Totos

      OK Hazadin. I will work on it.

  5. Irving

    Hi Totos, may I know A.S.S original hook No.22 are usually what sizes? – http://global.rakuten.com/en/store/amberjack/item/fg-as-fook22-50/

    I usually use Owner Cultive SJ-38 Stinger size 5/0.

    Would they be similar? I usually use 170gsm to 210gsm jigs.


  6. jeff

    Heloo totos question about this Decoy DJ-88 Twin Pike Assist Hooks Size 2/0 (6127) ?what is you comment about this asisst hook. Its complete assist hook pack.

    • Totos

      The assist cord in not fluoro cored.
      Good for the tail, but not for the head.

  7. Fernando Areias
    Fernando Areias01-03-2017

    Hey Toto,
    I’m trying to get some assist hooks, but I’m finding a hard time choosing the right ones. Can you please help me? I’m going to buy jigs from 120g to 250g.

    What’s the spec your recommend? At ebay they show something like this:

    A.S.S. Assist Hook 203 SF 20M (2035)

    Thanks again,

    • Totos

      Hi Fernando.
      I know how confusing it is. There’s no universal sizing of hooks.
      With Pike, 2/0 or 3/0.
      With Jigger Light, 4/0 or 5/0
      With Kinryu and ASS, #20 or #22
      Generally speaking, use smaller size for 120g to 180g jigs, and bigger hooks for 180g to 250g.
      Good luck.

  8. Karma yudha
    Karma yudha03-27-2017

    Hello totos
    Im karma yudha, im rarely take fishing trip. But in every trip i always do it “slow jigging” technich. Always wacth ur chanel at youtube its help me to now all about slow jigging. But its hard to find about what the benefit if i use hook with ring or hook without ring? Just for decrease the total weight? Less metal?
    Need a good answer from you, im diehard fans of slow jigging but i use spining reel now 🙂
    Regards from Bali Island – Indonesia

    • Totos

      Hi Karma. Thank you for supporting my website.
      Ring eye hook is stronger. Usually heavy wire. The knot can be stronger.
      But I think ring eye hook can work as a twisted hook for better hooking. If it slides on the skin of the fish, the point will catch it easily.

      Flat eye hook is much better in catch and penetrate. Usually light wire. By the way it’s knotted, the shank can be in a straight line with the assist cord. The hook doesn’t stagger through the water.

      For more reading for you, here’s a post about the hooks in details.

  9. Jeff Balazs
    Jeff Balazs10-19-2018

    Thanks for putting together such a great and informative site.
    I am in California, just getting into SPJ and have a question about hooks and rigging. I have bought a few jigs that are rigged from the factory. One model is a Williamson Vortex which is a fluttering action lure. It comes rigged with a large single hook at the top. Probably a 6/0 or 7/0. The rigging seems well engineered and includes a BB swivel and solid ring at the top. The way it is done the lure body is free to spin as it drops without having the large hook spinning with it. There is an eyelet at the bottom but no hooks. Do you think it is a good idea to add a pair of 3/0 hooks there or do you think that will destroy this lures action?

    Thank you again, Jeff

    • Totos

      Hi Jeff.
      All the answers to your question is on this website, but I know it’s a lot of information.
      For the best result, I would remove the hook, and make your own double hooks on the head and the tail with fluoro cored assist cord.

      We have hooks on both ends of the jig because fish bites on “the front of the movement”. To fish, it is the head of the prey. They don’t care about the print that looks like an eye. And getting the head is the sure way to stop the prey like any other animals.

      We use light-wired (double) hooks because big fat hooks would interfere the movement of the jig. We make it double to reinforce the strength.

      We use fluoro-cored assist cord because in SPJ we use a lot of up-and-down motions and non-elastic assist cord would get the hooks tangled.

      We always try to use as little metal parts in our system as possible because metal parts would bring complication, a break of sensitivity, and according to Sato Sensei, “the less metal, the more fish”. We don’t use swivel. If ever the swivel really works at all, the jig may spin, yes. And the only action that we know for sure do not work with the lure is spinning. In any lure games, no fish would bite on a spinning object. You do not want your lure to spin.

      • Jeff

        Hello Totos;
        Thank you very much for your response. We have regulations here that do not allow 4 hooks when fishing for “ground” fish like snappers etc. We can only rig that way when targeting pelagic species.
        So do you recommend tying our leader directly to a solid ring and then swapping jigs by using a split ring? If we can only use two hooks should they be larger when used as single at each end of the jig? I know this may be outside of your experience but I am trying to understand and adapt to my conditions here.
        Thank you again. Jeff

        • Totos

          Hi Jeff.
          Please check out the link for me terminal setup.

          If you can only use 2 hooks, just use the lightest possible single hook on the head and the tail. You should have spare hooks of different sizes, so that when you don’t get contacts, you can always size down your hooks. Hook size is that 8mportant.

          • Jeff

            Totos; Thank you for your response. I will keep that all in mind as I delve into this exciting technique. So much to learn and take in. I feel SPJ has a lot of potential for this region but much needs to be considered and adapted to the prevailing conditions here.
            Thanks again, Jeff

  10. Overseas971

    Hi Totos, I have a question concerning the color of the hook. Does it make any difference with silver, black or gold like shout kudako?

    Thanks in advance!

  11. Christian

    Totos sensei, i’m have a few question regarding the hooks, can we use treble hook or single hook for the tail? Why for slow jigging usually you set the double hook with single line assist each hook? Is it a problem if i use double hook with double assist line each hook (so one hook one split ring double lineassist style ?) Thanks a lot for your feedback

    • Totos

      Slow pitch principles behind the hook idea are explained at the end of this page. “Can you do such and such?” Of course you can do anything you want. SPJ is about maximizing the jigging potentials and there are reasons for every details. But of course, every options have cons and pros. If you understand those and choose your options according to your priorities, you have the shortest path to what you want to achieve.

      • Christian

        Yes .But i believe there is a reason why totos sensei and sato sensei using single line assist, is it regarding the strike rate? May i know your hook settings for 200-650gr jigs? By long is it S,M,L ? How strong(lb) assist line are you using? Do you think too big hook will be an action problem with the smaller jigs? Do you have any bad experience using single line assist hook? (Like its broken or something)? Thanks a lot

        • Totos

          Hi Christian.
          Well, the single-profile double hooks has less metal. And you have better chances for each hooks penetrate from opposite sides for secure hooking. But in reality, to be honest, I don’t have too strong an objection against 2 separate single hooks. I don’t see an advantage, but I see the disadvantages are still minor. Just personally, I have more faith in single-profile, but I wouldn’t recommend other people do the same.
          Longer assist cord can stabilize the jig movements (the tail hook), have better hooking rate, and have risks of tangling. When you go deep, the action becomes soft and less chances of tangling, so having longer assist would work better. The same principles can be applied with your free-drifting.
          Hook size is really depends on the target species and sizes, not the jigs. If you use light wire hooks like Jigger Light, I don’t think you should worry much about the book size. But sometimes it is true that when you don’t get contacts, you can change to smaller hooks and start getting contacts. Sometimes changing to lighter line helps greatly. So, there’s really not a textbook. You just need to keep changing your actions, changing your system, changing places for different currents, until you hit it. Having that attitude and effort, I think, is what separates good anglers.

  12. Spiros

    Hi Toto.
    My question has to do with how long have to be double assist hooks.
    I know that has to do with how long the jig is.
    I know that in the head the assist hook has to be shorter than the tail one.
    I know as you mention is better the head one with fluorocore and the tail without.
    There are jigs short and long.
    I have seen that they meet the front ones with the rear ones without to be hook up eachother.
    Please what your opinion about it?
    Can you give an example like…in a jig 11cm or 18cm or 8cm?

    Thanks in advance.

    • Totos

      There is no “best” setting. But understanding cons and pros will help you make your decisions purposefully.

      A. Standard setting. Head 1/2, Tail 1/2. I think it is the standard setting to have 1/2 jig length for both the head and the tail. Both lines as long as possible before the hooks touch each other in the middle.

      B. Quickly setting. Head 1/3, Tail 1/3. Good for quick, small actions.

      C. Sliding setting. Head 1/4, Tail, 3/4. Good for long sliding big actions. Long tail helps to carry the momentum to swim on its own like the tail of the flying kite.

      D. Catch setting. Head 3/5, Tail 3/5. Long assist setting to “catch” anything that comes near, rather than feeding. Good for deepsea perch or hairtail.

      Long assist is harder to snag because hooks fall behind the jig when it touches down the ground.
      The size of the hooks and the size of the wire change the actions too.

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