For the recreational angler, jumps are, by and large, thrilling and welcome. But if a jumping, shaking adrenaline-stoked fish stands between you and a tourney pay day, more often than not, you grow to resent the jump. I've heard comments around the launch ramps vary from, "man, those crazy jumping smallmouth are the best fighters in the world," to "man, I can't keep those stinking spotted bass buttoned up. They jump like crazy and throw every lure." If I'm really worried that a bass is going to throw my hooks on the jump, I'm keeping the rod tip low throughout the fight in an attempt to steer its head downward. Of course, you have to react this way quickly, because jumps are most likely to happen right after the hook set. It's not the most fun way to fight a fish, but it's a good trick to have in your back pocket if, say, you hook that 10-pounder you've been hunting every weekend for five years. Maybe there's no money on the line, but you won't dig seeing the fish take to the air if he shakes your worm in the process.