in the 23 months that I have been training I have owned 3 Gi’s, 2 Belts, 2 pairs of spats, 1 pair of compression shorts, 3 pairs of No-Gi shorts and 2 rash guards.
That seems like an excessive amount of “Gear”, it isn’t.
I have torn Gi pants, No-Gi shorts and turned rash guards and Gi jackets into biological hazards even though I have washed my stuff religiously(after every single use) using special washing powders, vinegar, oxy clean, napisan. I have hung my gear in the sun and basically tried all sorts of stuff to keep my gear from getting that “funk”.
What I have learnt is that, no matter what you do, your brand new Gi that looks awesome, will one day be a dirty old Gi.
My first Gi was a gameness brand, pearl weave I believe with ripstop pants. this Gi held up well, in fact the jacket is still in good condition, the pants ? torn to bits.
My next Gi was bought from the awesome site bjjhq.com it was an Aesthetic brand Aurora, pearl weave jacket but with twill cotton pants. I still wear this Gi, the pants are comfy and still in very good condition.
My third Gi was an Inverted gear white panda, surprise surprise the jacket was pearl weave and the pants ripstop. I did like this Gi, this was when I first discovered half sizes and due to my weight lose from getting fit with Jiu Jitsu I found that these half sizes fit me better(generally). I wore this Gi A LOT, it has held up ok but the ripstop pants not so well.
my conclusion here is that, ripstop pants are not as good as cotton, they don’t last as long. Another thing I learnt was that having more than one Gi is not excessive, having just one Gi means it gets washed a lot more and this will contribute to the Gi wearing out.
Some people just train in normal shorts, shorts designed for grappling have slits on the side to allow freer movement and are generally more durable, they also don’t have anything that may catch fingers or toes on which can prevent injuries.
my first pair of shorts were hayabusa brand, they were good shorts and served their purpose but after a while, they tore.
When I replaced them I bought ripstop shorts, which is a little strange considering I do not like ripstop Gi pants, so far I have owned 2 pairs of ripstop shorts and have not had any issues with them. My guess is ripstop is better suited to shorts than Gi pants. Of course this is just my personal opinion and my own experience.
I have only had two rash vests, one was a Ryu brand and the other was a 93 brand from bjjhq.com.
The Ryu rash guard was just straight up a better rash guard, build quality and materials were on another level compared to the 93 brand one.
What I have learnt here is that not all rash guards are built equal.
Compression shorts & Spats
The first thing I bought when I started Jiu Jitsu was a cup that came with compression shorts.
Then I found out that we are not allowed to wear cups during training(they are also banned in most BJJ tournaments) so I just used the compression shorts.
Compression shorts for me are essential, I do not train without them, I have now moved on to spats, they perform the same function but combined with a rash guard I’m completely covered, this performs two things it wicks the sweat from me and gives me a barrier against nasty things. My OCD/germ phobias are placated by this.
Something else I have noticed is that Jiu Jitsu gear generally seems to have a 12 month life span(of course this is going to vary depending on how often you train) I have recently just stocked up on new training gear, specifically a new Gi and 2 rash guards. Maybe I will write about them once I receive them(GI REVIEW!!!)