Medium-heavy spinning rods are good for heavy jigs, lures, rigs, and soft plastics between 1/4 to 1 ½ oz.
It allows you to fish in heavy cover, gives you enough load for casting distance, and enough sensitivity to feel the bites from the rod tip.
It’s considered the jack of all trades in terms of power and action because you can use it to catch a variety of fish like bass, catfish, musky, and pike.
However, not all fishing methods will work with a medium-heavy rod (I will explain below)
Let’s take a few steps back for those who aren’t sure about the medium-heavy labeling on rods.
What Does Medium/Heavy Mean On A Fishing Rod?
First and foremost, I would like to preface that I’m no expert in the different types of features and materials each rod brand manufactures.
Plenty of tackle junkies online can tell you all the bells and whistles.
But I don’t need to know EVERYTHING about the rod to catch fish, and you don’t either.
I do, however, remember the time I walked into a tackle store and got overwhelmed by all the different types of rods available.
What power to get, what type of action, etc.
So just know that I’ve been in your shoes and speak your language.
And if you’re asking what a medium-heavy rod is good for (You’ll see MH on the rod, that’s what it stands for), you’re at least aware of the different power and action available.
Rod Power Explained
Below is a chart that outlines the different types of rod power one can choose from:
So how do you know which rod power to use?
This all boils down to a few factors:
- What kind of fish are you after
- The kind of lake or pond you’re fishing in
- How heavy are the lures you’ll be using the most
Think of rod power as the strength or stiffness of a particular rod. For example, a heavy rod will bend less under pressure, and a light power rod will have more play.
There are benefits for all power types, depending on your situation.
And that’s why many anglers have different rods for different fishing techniques.
Also, to throw a wrench in things.
Different brands will have their rods bend differently, even though they are both labeled as medium-heavy.
The stiffness of a medium-heavy rod allows you to get the proper hookset and enough power to pull the fish out of thick mats, brushes, or laydowns.
Like Spiderman, with great power comes great responsibility. (nerd alert)
And that responsibility is to ensure you don’t rip the hook out of the fish’s mouth on the hookset.
Medium-heavy rods are stiffer than just medium, light, and ultra-light rods.
So you’ll need to play with the right amount of force when setting the hook.
Rod Action Explained
Rod action describes where the rod begins to bend when it does start bending.
For medium-heavy rods, the flex will bend in the first quarter of the rod and then stiffen near the backbone.
It’s stiff but still loads well on heavier lures.
Pair that with a fast action tip; the rod is sensitive enough to feel the bottom when bouncing a jig and the fish bite.
What Is A Medium Heavy Spinning Rod Not Good For?
Medium-heavy rods are not good for lighter lures like small crankbaits and other finesse-type swimbaits.
You won’t have the load to cast far compared to a lower-power rod with a slower action bend.
This is why many anglers have multiple rod and reel combos.
- Medium-heavy combo for medium to large fish species in the range of 3 – 20 lbs, fishing in lakes with lots of heavy cover.
- Medium-Light to Medium for medium fish species in the range of 3 – 8 lbs, fishing in open water for species like trout, etc.
- Ultralight or BFS setups for panfish and trout require lighter lines and tiny lures.