How to tie a running rig for snapper and carp with a blood knot

Running rigs: how to tie plus when and where to use one!


Today I’m going to talk about the humble old running rig. But before you switch off and think “I know how to tie that”; using this rig has a time and place and I regularly see people getting it wrong!

So not only am I going to show you how to tie a running rig, but more importantly I’ll explain when and how you should be using it!

Because the best knot tier in the world is not going to catch more fish.

The key to catching your target species consistently is getting three components right. You need to be in the right territory, at the right time with the right tools.

Using your running rig correctly ties in all three!

A running rig, for those that may not know, is where your sinker runs up and down your main line, then a swivel then some leader and your hook.


A running rig is a versatile fishing rig for demersal foraging species.

A running rig is a versatile fishing rig for demersal foraging species that is often used incorrectly.

Now there are a few key considerations when using a running rig.

  1. It’s best when used for bottom dwelling foraging species because your bait will be nice and close to the bottom. Not for barramundi whose eyes are on the top of the head and like to look up. Or a tuna swimming about in the water column. This rig is more for foragers that like to eat crabs and coral and worms and stuff.
  2. You can use a running rig for strip baits or live baits, but you’ll need to have shallow water with a bit of current. This is where many people go wrong. Up to 15 metres deep at the most.


It has to do with staying tight to your fish, reducing tangles and stopping your bait from spinning.

You never want your livies or strip baits to spin. It looks unnatural and will reduce your chances of a bite from a good fish.

Fish don’t get big by being stupid and a spinning bait is alarm bells for a big fish. All you’ll catch is a bunch of little tiddlers.

A running rig is a versatile fishing rig best used in shallow water with a bit of current.

Get this right and you will catch more (and bigger) fish.

Watch our video on where and when to use a running rig (and why!), best angles to cast it, plus an easy way to tie the knots.



Righto, there you have it. A running rig for bottom dwelling foragers like bream, whiting, grunter, fingermark in foraging mode and many species around the world.

But remember, as far as fishing rigs go, a running rig is best in shallow water with a bit of run.

Be sure and cast out to the side (as shown in the video above) to cover the most ground and increase your bite chances.

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About The Author

Ryan Moody

Ryan Moody started his fishing career on the reef boats before catching bucket list marlin for the likes of champion heavy tackle angler Johnno Johnson, INXS and the King of Sweden. Branching out in the late 80's to guided barramundi fishing, Ryan has made a name for himself as a Big Barramundi specialist and to date has put clients onto over 2000 metre plus barra. That is over 2 kilometres of metre plus barra! With attitudes changing from 'keep all you can' towards catch and release, Ryan has decided to share his extensive knowledge and hopefully inspire people of all ages to get out from behind the computer screen/TV and into the fishing outdoors lifestyle he has spent his life perfecting.

Facebook comments


  • Tiarne Cox

    Reply Reply July 21, 2019

    Hi Ryan

    Hubby and I are trying to settle a debate on what the best rig to use would be for river /creek fishing for Barra in the Kimberley would be. Currently we use a meter or so of leader with a running ball sinker no swivel (live bait). Is the dropper rig only useful for that hour or so where the tide stops ?

  • Ryan Moody

    Reply Reply April 27, 2019

    The dropper rig is best for those conditions
    Cheers mate

  • Paul Calado

    Reply Reply April 18, 2019

    Hi Ryan, deep water and running sinker rigs just don’t mix, but when fishing live bait for barramundi and there is no tidal run and the water is shallow, what is the best rig to stop the live bait tangling the rig ? Float rigs just don’t seem to work where i fish, the bait swims around on the surface.

  • Alex Baki

    Reply Reply April 18, 2019

    Hi Ryan,

    thanks for sharing your vidoes as i find them really helpful. i have a few questions for you:

    1- what size hook and brand, you use for livies for catching barra?
    2- how much for a charter for two? also what is the best time of the year for a fish as i have a friend from brisbane that loves his fishing and would like to take him for a trip with you.

    Look forward for your response. thanks!

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