With thousands of options to choose from, selecting the perfect Jiu Jitsu Gi can be difficult. We want you on the mats training in your new kimono as quickly as possible, so take a moment to read our guide and find the perfect Gi.
How Should My BJJ Gi Fit?
Perfectly. Size is probably the most important factor when choosing your Gi. A Gi that is too big will be uncomfortable and leave you exposed to grips, one that that is too short might get you DQ’d from competition. Not to mention, having to re package and return merchandise to the seller is a hassle and should be avoided at all costs. We highly recommend checking the sizing guides that are always made available by the seller.
Stuck Between Sizes?
One half size up is the way to go. Your new Gi will shrink in warm water and in the dryer. This is something to be aware of when laundering your kimono, so always wash in cold water and hang dry if you are trying to maintain its fit. We also recommend hang drying out of direct sunlight, this will help maintain the integrity of the fabric, as well as keep it from stiffening. If you need some help with sizing, check out our article on the most common size charts
What Type of Weave Should I Buy?
There are several different weave patterns that change the durability and feel of the gi top. If you’re concerns are superficial, just read the underlined sections and you will get all you need to know. If you’re into the details, we’ve got a few for you here as well. This section applies to anyone who needs a kimono for Judo or Karate.
Single Weave Cotton
Single Weave is the lightest and least expensive. A single weave BJJ Gi tends to measure between 300 – 550 g/m2. Because it is less dense, it is less durable as well, but will keep you cool in the hot months.
Pros: Light. Cheap.
Cons: Less durable
Double Weave Cotton
Double Weave Cotton is a heavy and durable adaptation that will keep you warm and will last a long, long time. The double weave can be less pleasant to wear, so we definitely recommend wearing a rash guard underneath. But make no mistake, this style of fabric is built to last.
Pro: Strong, durable and long lasting.
Con: A bit uncomfortable on bare skin.
Originally a requirement for the IBJJF, the gold weave is a middle ground between single and double weave.
Pro: A good compromise between single and double weave
Con: If you’re looking for a stand out attribute; comfort, levity breathability, etc., the gold weave does none of these particularly well.
Ripstop fabric is extremely lightweight and durable, and is a clear stand out for that reason. Gis woven this way can be of a variety of different materials, but but because of its lightweight nature, ripstop is very comfortable.
Pro: The strongest and lightest available, very comfortable.
Con: Very easy for an opponent to grip and use against you.
This one comes down completely on you. A variety of different styles and colors are available. The only thing to be mentioned here is that a colored gis can wear and discolor differently. If you want to read more about maintaining the color of your kimono, check out this article.
A Solid choice, because it can be washed with bleach or other heavy oxidizing agents. Good thing, because the dreaded yellow pit stain is a real thing, especially if you choose not to wear a rash guard. If your into coordinating colors and patterns, the standard white Gi will always contrast nicely with your belt as you progress.
Black or Other Patterns
A darker color can be preferable to many for stylistic reasons, however with frequent washing the colors can fade over time, especially from cotton jackets. Check out this article to learn how to keep the colors from dulling too much.
Depending on what you’re looking for, you can buy a used Gi for under $50.00. Or, you could get something new and specialized for up to $250.00. If this is your first BJJ Gi, we will push you towards the lower end of the spectrum. Expect around the $100.00 mark. However, if you’re looking for the last kimono you’ll ever buy, we encourage you to spend on it. With any of the most reputable brands you will find a very long-lasting product that will get you every dollar’s worth.
No matter what direction you go, tell us what you chose and why. If there is a gi you love that you’d like us to review, put it in the comments below and we look forward to researching it for you! Now go get your gi and get after it!