The split grip has been the most notable trend in fishing rod design over the past couple of years, but what’s the purpose. No doubt some anglers may think that it’s simply for visual appeal, or just a ploy to sell more fishing rods.
Forget about the look, and think about function. First of all, less cork in the handle means less overall weight, and lighter is better. A lightweight rod is easier to handle, and results in less fatigue during a day of casting.
More importantly, the split-handle design helps you cast more efficiently, with greater distance and accuracy. Because it provides a superior fulcrum point, it helps you force the rod blank to load like it was designed to do. There’s less temptation to you’re your body into the backstroke, then “throw” the lure on the forward stroke. Instead, the blank remains in a more upright position with your body. You use your strong arm to guide the back- and forward strokes, while your other hand powers the butt grip like a lever. It and your entire arm stay close to your body, the no wasted movement. With the blank more upright throughout the cast, the rodtip begins to load more quickly and more fully. Thus, your lure will fly farther and more accurately, with less effort on your part. Again, that means less fatigue and a longer, or more comfortable, fishing day.
Finally, a split grip exposes more of the rod blank to your hand, greatly increasing your ability to detect a strike, or even a subtle pick-up, resulting in a better hook-up rate.
In short, a split-grip rod just makes more sense. You owe it to yourself to test one out for yourself.