Deciding to learn and train in the art of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is the first step in your journey as a beginner! You will then very quickly see that the second step is finding the first Gi for you. Finding the best BJJ Gi for beginners can be quite an overwhelming process as BJJ Gis can be vastly different.
There is a lot to consider, including color, weave, material, price, size, and weight. It may sound scary, however, as a beginner, the best thing to do is to find a Gi that is affordable and does not compromise on quality. At this point, there is no logic in buying a super expensive and snazzy Gi just for you to later fall out of love with martial arts.
How to Pick the Right Size BJJ Gi for a Beginner
Jiu Jitsu Gi works with a specific size guide. When you see an A, this is for adult guys; F is for adult women and when you see M this is in reference to kids aged 5-14 years in both genders.
It is important to cross-reference general size guides with brand-specific ones, as sometimes there will be inconsistencies with sizing. When wearing your Gi it shouldn’t feel too tight, nor too loose. It needs to fit your body without restricting you. Additionally, if you have an oversized Gi it will quickly become a tripping hazard. The sleeves should fit just above your wrist, and similarly, your trousers will fall just above your ankles.
Another thing worth noting is that a lot of brands will advertise that their Gi has been pre-shrunk, or alternatively that it needs to be shrunk in order to get the correct fit. Pay attention to this, otherwise you could end up wasting your money.
What to Look for in a BJJ Gi for Beginners
Finding the best Gi can be difficult for any BJJ practitioner, but it can be especially overwhelming as a beginner. Here are the key things to look out for and consider when purchasing your first Gi.
BJJ Gis come in a variety of colors, however, under the International Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (IBJJF) regulations, Gis must be white, black, or blue. You can train in whatever color you like, and this can be a fun way to express yourself through your Gi. Some of the best looking BJJ Gi comes in all kinds of color combinations. Typically, a lot of practitioners tend to prefer traditional blue or white kimonos.
BJJ Gis come in three different types of weave. There is single weave Gi, which is often the go-to option for beginners as it is a light and affordable option. Single weave will keep you cooler, however, they are less durable than double or gold weave.
Double weave is thicker and has a more durable construction. Double weave is ideal for competitions as the thickness of the jacket makes it harder to grab onto. Naturally, with added thickness comes added weight which can lead to overheating and fatigue more easily.
Lastly, we have gold weave. The gold weave is made by threading two single weaves together to give it that extra durability & strength due to the heavier strand used. The hybrid maintains a lightweight style, with increased durability and thickness compared to standard single weave.
The price of Gis varies from anywhere from $50 to $250! You will want to invest in a good, comfortable Gi, however, if it is your first Gi, then it's one you will definitely not be wanting to spend more than $100. It is important to have a quality Gi, without it breaking the bank. Especially as a beginner, as you do not always know yet if you will end up sticking with martial arts. So, a cheap BJJ Gi is always a good place to start.
The collar fill of a Gi is also important to pay attention to. Most are filled with rubber or cotton. A lot of BJJ practitioners prefer a cotton constructed collar as it is more flexible and comfortable. Rubber collars are better at preventing odor as they do not hang onto germs as much as cotton, however, they have developed a reputation for being more susceptible to chokeholds.
Gi Care Tips
A lot of brands will advertise their Gis as pre-shrunk, however, be cautious as there is always a chance that the Gi can shrink somewhat. If you find yourself choosing between two sizes, it's best to go for the larger size to compensate for any potential/slight shrinkage.
It is important to properly care for your Gi. You will want to keep your Gi clean as dependent on the fabric it is made of, they can hold onto bacteria and odors. Washing your Gi is fine, however, it is essential that you let it air dry – do not put it in the dryer! That will shrink your Gi. When washing it, use cold water as hot water can damage the collar. If you get a stain on your Gi, do not try to bleach it, just run cold water over the affected area and scrub at it. Another important thing to remember is to never wash your BJJ belt!
Other basic care includes not leaving a sweaty Gi bundled up in your bag or washing your white trousers with other colors. The better you care for your Gi, the longer it will last and the better it will serve you.
Our Top 5 Best BJJ Gi Recommendations for Beginners
There are several great brands for beginners to choose from, and so, in order to help you figure out what one is the best Jiu Jitsu Gi for you, we have set out our top 5 recommendations for best beginner BJJ Gi and have summarized their pros and cons.
The Sanabul Essentials V.2 is a great Gi to start your BJJ journey with. It has been designed to be durable and practical, all at an affordable price. This dense single weave Gi is easy to manoeuvre in and is also ultra-lightweight, which is perfect for those summer months. Sanabul designs are tested by high profile athletes ensuring that their Gis can withstand even the most gruelling of sessions. The rubberized collars are sturdy making them hard to grip for your opponent. It is available in 5 different colors (blue, green, grey, navy, white and black) and features anti-odor technology to keep those nasty smells away. Alongside this, it comes with a free white belt to get you started on your Brazilian Jiu Jitsu journey.
The beauty of this Gi is that you get to focus on the actual Jiu Jitsu as opposed to having issues with your Gi to hold back your learning. You will fit right in on the mat with this Gi, with contrast stitching, athletic cut, and subtle design. Not only will you look the part, but you will feel it too.
The Fuji Jiu Jitsu Gi is an all-round great Gi for beginners and pros alike. This specific Brazilian pride edition is unique, made from a premium cotton blend and also fit the IBJJF standards. This Gi is versatile in its use. It is made of a pearl weave fabric which combines the benefits of both lightweight and heavyweight Jiu Jitsu Gi. By using a pearl weave fabric, the Gi is light enough to be used in summer and training sessions generally but also is heavy enough to withstand competitions. The Gi features reinforced stitching along the common stress points and the trousers have padding on the knees for both increased durability and protection for the athlete. It is important to note that the Fuji Gi does not come pre-shrunk, so it is important to bear this in mind when selecting your size.
The Fuji Gi is available in four colors (blue, white, black and pink) and comes with an embroidered Fuji patch on the sleeve of the jacket. Another perk of this Gi is that it comes with a white belt. Overall, this Gi has a classic, stylish look with strong durability and reliable practicality that makes it perfect for beginners.
The Elite Sports BJJ Gi is another highly sought after Gi by beginners. It is constructed using a lightweight pre-shrunk fabric, that uses anti-odor technology that rids your Gi of bacteria and bad smells. It is available in a numerous number of color combination and features a sleek and classic style. A personal favorite of the color combinations is the black Gi that comes with red embroidering of the logo on the lapel and red inner cuffs on the jacket. This styling is unique and cool without being over the top and flashy. Aside from looking good, this Gi is also a highly practical option as it fits the standards of the IBJJF and conveniently comes with a free white belt to get you started with.
The Elite Sports Gi is definitely one of the more affordable options on the market, and so, if you are someone who is not quite sure about their Brazilian Jiu Jitsu journey then this is the one for you. You will be able to get a practical Gi without breaking the bank.
The Venum Contender 2.0 BJJ Gi is manufactured using 100% pearl weave cotton, which finds the ultimate balance of combining durability and comfort. It comes pre-shrunk, so you do not have to worry about your Gi shrinking on you and losing its fit. The trousers are made of 100% cotton and have reinforced stitching on the inside of the leg and around the ankle, this helps the common stress points withstand vigorous training/competition. Not only will that make you feel competition ready, but the reinforced collar made of EVA foam makes it harder for your opponent to grab you, without the expense of your comfort.
The Venum Contender 2.0 is available in 5 colors (black, blue, grey, navy and white) and features its well-known logo across the shoulder and the back. This Gi is the most expensive out of the ones we have featured in this article, however, it is not an unreasonable price for the quality you get from this durable and trendy Gi.
The Your Jiu Jitsu Gear Gi is a stripped back, simple Gi that provides the basics for a beginner. It is made from high-quality cotton that ensures a suitable thickness for a beginner. This Gi comes in white and is completely blank, and Your Jiu Jitsu Gear believes that you should add the patches you want and not have to advertise brands. This gives you the opportunity to really personalize your Gi if you want to. This potential for customization is quite unique.
Additionally, the Gi comes with either a free white or blue belt of your choice. Overall, this is a very inexpensive Gi that guarantees quality. It is definitely associated with being a cheap BJJ Gi, but, if you are very new to the martial arts world and are not quite sure yet, this Gi is a good option for spending as little money whilst you work out if you are in it for the long run.
A Quick Summary!
Each Gi that we have just gone through would make a great choice for any beginner. They are all IBJJF certified and are designed to last. As a beginner, there is no need for you to spend excess amounts on a Gi, as you may end up not enjoying the martial arts, or on the other side of the spectrum you may enjoy it so much that want to change and upgrade your Gi. Hopefully, this guide has highlighted that there are lots of BJJ Gis available out there for beginners, however, if we had to pick what we think is the best BJJ Gi for beginners then the Fuji BJJ Gi takes it. Fuji is an award-winning brand and the Brazilian pride edition Gi is perfect for beginners as it offers high quality, guaranteed longevity, and comfort, all at a reasonable price.
Nonetheless, if the Fuji Gi is out of budget, fear not as the Sanabul Essentials V.2 is also another great choice for beginners at a much more affordable price. It is a high-quality Gi without the commitment of having to invest in something a bit pricier. The best thing to do is to take your time before deciding on a Gi, find what is best for your needs as a beginner and as an individual before purchasing.