Tailing loops explained - why they occur

Only when you are aware of the problem and its cause you can fix it. Many are the people I guide that express anger or frustration when I put them to the test of dealing with tough circumstances. The sad part is that I often see ineffektive solutions to the problem that may just help to prevent it most of the time and at the same time they loose their natural casting stroak to benefit in having less tailing loops.

The wind is in your face, you are really pushing to get the line to turn over and in the same time having a big loop in hope that it wont make a knot on the leader or reach the arm forward in the cast hoping that will solve the problem.

Tailing loop demonstrated

Since long I have had issues with back pain. To the point to my own fishing got suffering. It al went on until I discovered that gluten no longer were a healthy part of my diet. What I would like to show with this is that its not always the most obvious thing that is the cause on things happening. The hard workload, inadequate exercise and bad posture was the things I struggled with and thought were the plain and only cause to my pack pain. I still work on these things but they didn't even all together have as grate impact as the one thing witch were changing my diet did. By finding the knowledge on the subject and started follow a strictly diet I slowly changed the way I felt. The intestinal system stops being upset and that makes a chain reaction to the muscles next to them to work properly without being distracted and annoyed surrounding muscles like the tissue of muscles that whats cause is to protect and support the back. My backproblems isn't completely gone yet but its doesn't stop me from what I love to do anymore and show up less and less constant just as the wind knots on my leader if you see the parable here. It does after all make some sense!

Demonstrate a tailing loop

As a part of the certification program in the Federation of Fly Fishers there is a part where you are suppose to explain but also demonstrate a tailing loop. Quite useless for fishing situations I must say but for instructional purpose it can be useful to be able to show how a tailing loop looks. At first this looked like something that could risk me not passing the test because you are expected not to fail on any point of the test. But I figured out a 100% sure way to do a tailing loop and it became the most easy and relaxed part of the test for me. The thing I did was to use a to narrow casting arc* for the amount of line I had out. It guaranteed to be a beautiful knot of it all, try it yourself!

* Casting arc = The path that the fly rod follows during a complete cast.

Cause and conclusion

Well now you might say "well Robert that's good to know but my casting arc is not even close to being to small. Its instead to big but still the tailing loops occur, why?"

Well the answer is fairly simple. When making a perfect cast with tight loops the rod tip must travel with an as close as possible straight path through the air. If the rod tip path is in a large convex shape the loop will be big but if the rod tip path is at any point concave you will have a tailing loop. The rod tip is bending differently depending on how loaded it is. If the power application is uneven it might go below the straight rod tip path or if you begin the forward casting stroke by creeping the power will increase so much to the end of the stroke giving the same result.

In general the reasons for a tailing loop can be one of these things or a combination:

1. Too narrow casting arc

2. Uneven power application

3. Slack line such as "creep"

Individual things can lead to that tailing loop, the list can be made much longer than just 3 things but I want to keep things simple! Having a casting arc appropriate for the amount of line outside the rod tip, having an even power application and avoid slack by letting the line roll out before you go in the other direction in the cast should improve your casting in general and keep those tailing loops away. A casting instructor can be a good option if you want further and more individual advise. If you are planing to take guided fishing or a casting instruction with me I really kneed to know these things you want to get out of the day so I know what to give to you.

Hope you found this helpful, you might have been left with a lot of loose ends here and questions that you want to get answered. Don't be afraid to ask them below!

The demonstrations and explanations aren't perfect or complete in this article but I hope to one day add links just like Wikipedia does on certain words so you can proceed in studding these kinds of things in other articles on my blog and learn more. This blog is a steady growing project I do on my spare time. In the mornings I pick up my notebook or computer and write, I enjoy doing that a lot so far. If you found this helpful and want more like it, please subscribe through the formula below to receive an email next time I post on the blog. As long as the blog is growing I'll keep writing!

Stay well folks! Tight lines!


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