The popularity of martial arts is on the rise. However, before training begins, students need proper uniforms. A jiu jitsu uniform, or gi, comes in a variety of sizes and weaves. Knowing more about these features helps shoppers make an informed purchase. Jiu jitsu enthusiasts searching for high-quality uniforms find a variety of brands like ProForce®, Fuji and Hayabusa at AWMA, a trusted supplier of martial arts products.
Jiu Jitsu Gis vs. Other Types
While it may seem that all gis are alike, jiu jitsu uniforms differ from those of other martial arts like karate, judo and taekwondo. Because they are often grabbed and pulled, jiu jitsu gis feature stronger fabric than other gis and are more form fitting.
Jiu Jitsu Uniform Color
Many clubs and tournaments have differing rules when it comes to a gi's color. In some clubs, participants must wear a white gi until they obtain a blue belt. Then, they are free to wear gis of any color. Some international championships only allow gis in black, blue or white and others allow any solid uniform color. Shoppers can find ProForce® uniforms in black, white, pink and blue at AWMA.
Jiu Jitsu Uniform Sizing
Proper uniform size is important for jiu jitsu training and competition. Gis that are too big or too small affect performance on the mat. Recommended sizes are as follows:
- MOO – up to 3 years of age
- MO – 3-5 years of age
- M1 – 5-7 years of age
- M2 – 7-9 years of age
- M3 – 9-11 years of age
- JR – 11-13 years of age
- A1 – 5 feet, 2 inches to 5 feet, 5 inches in height
- A2 – 5 feet, 5 inches to 5 feet, 9 inches in height
- A3 – 5 feet, 9 inches to 6 feet, 1 inches in height
- A4 – 6 feet to 6 feet, 4 inches in height
- A5 – 6 feet, 4 inches to 6 feet, 6 inches in height
While this chart is typical for many brands, some offer a different sizing chart. Certain manufacturers create gis specifically for females, which come marked with an "F" instead of an "A." It is also important to note whether gis are preshrunk or not before purchasing.
Types of Fabric Weave
Fabric weave is an important consideration for the purchase of a jiu jitsu uniform. While thinner weaves are lighter, they are also easier for opponents to grab and pull. Thicker weaves are more durable and harder to grab, but they also weigh competitors down and restrict movement more than thinner weaves.
Uniforms made from single-weave fabric are the lightest in weight and the least expensive. Single weave uniforms make a popular choice for beginning jiu jitsu students, but shoppers should bear in mind that they are the least durable.
Uniforms made from double-weave fabric feature twice as much material as single-weave products. As the thickest style available, double-weave uniforms are the most durable and the hardest for opponents to grab. On the downside, double-weave gis are heavy, which can hamper movement and, sometimes, create problems when weighing in at competitions.
Newer Types of Weaves
In the quest for a lighter yet durable gi, many manufacturers are turning to new types of weaves. Gold weave, pearl weave, crystal weave and ripstop all offer unique features.
Designed as a hybrid of the single and double weaves, uniforms made from gold weave are thick and durable without being too heavy. The weave is fairly loose and gets softer with time.
Tightly-woven and coarse, pearl weave is one of the most popular weaves available. The fabric is durable, lightweight and dries fast. To the chagrin of opponents, it offers a rough feel when grabbed.
Featuring a loose basket style, crystal weave is soft and comfortable on the skin. While it looks thick, the fabric is very lightweight. Because of its looseness, crystal weave shrinks when washed. In order to maintain the proper size, gis made from crystal weave must be pulled straight when still wet.
Sturdy, ripstop fabric comes in 100 percent cotton or a cotton-polyester blend. Reinforced threads woven into the fabric give it a distinct square pattern and high durability. Jiu jitsu competitors looking for the best of both worlds opt for the ProForce® Competition Signature Jiu-Jitsu Gi, offering a pearl weave jacket and ripstop pants.
When choosing a jiu jitsu uniform, shoppers should consider the rules of their particular club, the size of the uniform and the desired fabric weave. Reading reviews of different brands helps in finding the best possible uniform. Jiu jitsu enthusiasts looking for high-quality products often turn to AWMA, a reliable martial arts source.