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What Colour Gi for BJJ
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What Colour Gi for BJJ

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The art of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu has grown in leaps, and bounds, as the popularity of the ground fighting art has risen substantially. Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is a highly energetic, and systematic form of tactical combat. The fight for advantage consists of grip fighting, takedowns, positional control, transitional movements, and submission maneuvers. There are two separate forms of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu that athletes can train in, the Gi is a more traditional version, while the No Gi styling is a more modernised version of the art. Athletes that want to learn more detailed intricacies will learn how to wear a bjj gi, as the art of the Gi specialises in grip fighting. Gi Jiu Jitsu fighters use a series of maneuvers that includes collar chokes, lapel wraps, pistol grips, pant grips, pocket grips, and Gi jacket grips all in order to neutralise, sweep, pass the guard, and submit their opponents.

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Nowadays there is bold new innovation that has gone into Gi apparel, as the technological advancements are extremely beneficial to a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu athlete. Wearing a Gi can be suffocating at times, especially during the hotter months, or in a more humid climate. Athletes will need to know how should a bjj gi fit, and once they are acclimatised to wearing the stifling uniform, they will be able to function within the parameters of the Gi ruleset. These days Gi apparel comes in many different types of weave, from lightweight to the more expensive, and durable thicker Gi's. There is an abundance of different colours that practitioners can choose from, along with the highly anticipated customisation option. 

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does gi color matter in bjj

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IS IT IMPORTANT TO HAVE MORE THAN ONE GI

It is quite common for new students to ask questions like how many bjj gi's should i own, and to that end a beginner really only needs one Gi to begin with. Once a student begins to train more comprehensively throughout their academies timetable, then they may need to think about upgrading their wardrobe, and adding in a few more Gi options. Students that train 3 to 5 days per week will need at least 3 different Gi's, so they don't have to rely solely on waiting for their Gi to dry after being washed. Some students like to collect Gi's, and they can have upwards of 10, or 20 different types of Gi brands. These hardcore Jiu Jitsu fans will pull out the signature Gi's at seminars, or grading nights. In terms of competition, students will need to make sure they have a good fitting Gi, so they are comfortable during any competition matches. All Gi competitions will allow each competitor a 3 kilogram Gi allowance, which means they can be 3 kilograms heavier than their weight category, whilst wearing their Gi. This can be an extremely useful tool for students, as they try to make weight in the lower weight categories.

Students must be smart with their choice of Gi, and not just accumulate any Gi they see without doing the research. Each different style of Gi has its own strengths, and weaknesses, so it's important for students to know the difference. Picking a Gi for competition means a student will usually opt for a lightweight Gi, like a pearl weave. The single weave Gi is not the best choice, as even though it is a lightweight Gi, it has a greater chance of stretching, or ripping. Most competitors will choose a pearl weave, and this is due to its lightweight design, while still being one of the more durable Gi's on the current market. A double weave Gi has an extremely high GSM, which stands for grams per square metre, and this begs the question of how much does a bjj gi weigh, as a double weave Gi is among the heaviest Brazilian Jiu Jitsu uniforms in the modern era. 

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CAN A STUDENT WEAR ANY COLOURED GI FOR COMPETITION 

Becoming a BJJ competitor isn't as simple as jumping in any old Gi, and stepping onto the mats. The IBJJF competition circuit has a bunch of strict rules, and regulations in place that all students must abide by. Competitors must wear a sanctioned competition Gi, which meets the standards of the IBJJF. These sanctions include the right thickness of the lapel, as a Gi that does not comply will be rejected. Other sanctions include the sleeves must be of a certain length, as well as have enough slack, so that an opponent can easily grab hold of a pistol grip, or a pocket grip. The IBJJF only allows competitors to wear three different coloured Gi's, and these are the traditional white, royal blue, and black. Gi jackets that have a different colour to the Gi pants, are also not permitted, along with Gi jackets that have a different coloured collar then that of the Gi. There are also rulings surrounding the size, and placement of all patches that are sewn onto a Gi jacket. This may seem unruly to some, but the IBJJF have their own set of stringent guidelines that must be adhered to. There are other competitions that do not have as many stringent regulations as the IBJJF, and these avenues for competitors will allow them to wear any coloured Gi they choose, including fully customised Gi apparel. 

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COLOURED GI'S, THE RANGE, AND ACADEMY COLOURS

In Brazilian Jiu Jitsu the Gi is a traditional, and sacred uniform. For a long time, tradition says that Gi's should be white, royal blue, or black, or at least that is according to the IBJJF standards. In the modern era many athletes have taken to the online shopping platform to source some of the most uniquely designed, and colourful Gi's on the world market. There are many different Gi manufacturers like Hayabusa, Elite, Hyperfly, Kingz Kimonos, War, Koral, Venom, and Tatami just to name a few, that have created an extensive range of multicoloured, and epically designed creations. These days anything goes in the world of Gi apparel, as manufacturers have made phenomenal styles that offer colours like red, pink, brown, camo, grey, purple, charcoal and many other hybrid colours. What makes many of these Gi's such a stand out among others, is their specific designs like logo placement, and graphics that are embroidered within the Gi. Well known companies like Hayabusa have added famous graphics like their iconic gorilla playing chess. Raven is another company that creates weird, and wonderful Gi apparel, including rash guards that consist of Nordic themes like Vikings, battles, and mythical beasts like the Kraken.

Most academies that students will join are inspiring, and understanding, as they will allow their students to wear any types of Gi, or Gi apparel they buy. During a training session it doesn't really matter what a student wears, as long as they are embodying the ideology of their instructor, training to the core values of their academy, and respecting all members of their academy. Wearing a special signature Gi that is covered in graphics, and has multiple layers of colours, is completely normal in this day and age. Some academies expect all of their students to wear their academy colours, and this may be a royal blue, or a white, which is quite common amongst some of the more traditional Brazilian Jiu Jitsu academies. Some students will think this practise is arbitrary, as they only want to train, and wear whatever makes them feel confident. Most academies will not expect students to wear an academy Gi, but they do strongly encourage wearing academy Gi's during competition, or at a grading seminar. The main reason behind this is so that when an instructor posts photos on social media, they can market their academy through the use of each individual wearing the academy logo. It is also a nice look, to have a whole bunch of students competing at a BJJ tournament, whilst wearing their academy logos. This is a fair enough aspect for instructors to ask, as most students will spend a multitude of money on different styles of Gi, so they may as well buy an academy brand.

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DO RASH GUARDS FOLLOW THE SAME IBJJF STANDARDS 

As one of the most professional organisations in the world, the IBJJF has an extremely strict set of regulations that they are governed by. Some students may think their rules, and ideals are outdated, or old fashioned, but the traditional element within the IBJJF still remains as one of their core values. This concept makes them extremely proficient, and an iconic federation of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. There are many students that will question the reasoning of the IBJJF, when it comes to what uniforms to wear during competitive tournaments. Wearing certain coloured Gi's may be understandable, but what is a rash guard bjj that has large graphics on it matter, to the overall look of a competitive athlete. This may be a valid question from a student to an organiser, but the bottom line is all students must only wear rash guards that have 10% of their belt colour on the sleeves, and a logo that is of an appropriate size. During the No Gi division, students that wear weird, and wacky coloured rash guards can make it extremely hard for a referee, when they are scoring the bout. This is why the IBJJF have weeded out all of their problems, and put into place their own set of guidelines that govern all competitive athletes.

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WASHING THE GI TO PREVENT COLOUR FADE

One of the biggest problems that BJJ athletes May face is how to properly care for their Gi. Some of the Gi's that practitioners may wear have all different colours, which can become problematic when trying to rapidly clean them in time for their next training session. Ideally all students should have a large range of Gi's, so they are never waiting for the only one they have to dry. Students must learn how to wash a jiu jitsu gi, as the importance of killing the bacteria that lives within the Gi, can prevent the risk of different types of infections. Washing a Gi can be rather easy, as all the student needs to do is put the Gi in the washing machine, add the usual laundry detergent, or powder, and then add some fabric softener to make the Gi smell nicer, and feel softer. The crucial element is to wash the Gi in cold water, so that it does not shrink during its cycle. Another important tip is to steer clear of using a dryer to dry a Gi after its initial wash. Using a dryer for too long on heat, will certainly shrink a Gi, and can possibly fade the colours too. There are other ways to dry a Gi that is just coming out of the washing machine, as the natural regime of hanging a Gi out is perfect. An important thing to remember, is to not hang the Gi in direct sunlight, as this will most certainly fade the Gi, leaving it stiff, and blotchy with colour. Gi's must be hung in a shaded area, so they can naturally dry without any form of hindrance.

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jiu jitsu gi color meaning

Many students may wonder about the importance of washing a Gi, as the Gi is one of the biggest carriers of germs, and bacteria. These can cause extreme problems for an academy, as bacterias can turn into infections like staph, and ringworm. Bacteria can be transported many different ways like from the feet of an athlete, on their skin, or even under their fingernails. This is why all students must use proper hygiene methods, to keep their bodies clean, keep their nails trimmed, and filed, and always wear shoes while they are off the mats. The most important notion is washing their Gi, and this must be done as soon as they get home from training, as it can be problematic to leave the Gi marinating in its own bacteria. Another important aspect is to wash the belt at the same time as the Gi, because the belt is just a belt, and it does not carry any mystical power, instead it carries germs, and bacteria just like the Gi. Even though an academy will rigorously clean the mats with disinfectant, and bleach, bacteria can still be transported from student to student. Which is why it is vitally important for all students to go through all of these proper hygiene channels, so they can stay well prepared for any problems that may occur.

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