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Judo Gi: Frequently Asked Questions

5th Jan 2020

Here are some common questions from around the web:

Does Judo only work while wearing uniform?

No. Judo teaches how to use leverage and and opponents weight and momentum against them. Many of the throws can be easily adaptend to real life situations. The Gi was developed to be strong so that students could throw eachother repeatedly and not destroy their clothes. Judo and earlier arts were originally taught wearing Kimonos. Without a Gi Judo is still very effective if done correctly.

How big should I buy a Judo gi?

One usually fits a gi according to hs or her shoulder width so as to allow arm movement with a wide range of motion that is not binding. Sleeve and pants legs, if necessary or desired, can be rolled up. Gis are usually made of cotton and will shrink approximately 10 % when washed. To shrink any material, was the article in hot water and dry it in a hot dryer, as cold water is used when one does not wish for the article to shrink. Drying a gi on an outside clothes line will usually result in it being stiff and uncomfortable for the wearer. As the collar is very heavy and the shoulder area has some padding, it is often necessary to use a dryer unless you live in a very warm to hot and very dry area. This one currently lives in New England which has recently experienced a very wet and rainy summer season. This one washed and rinsed one of his gis at home and hung it on a line to dry. After two days, this one took it to the laundry mat. Between days of class, one might wish to hang up his or her gi so that it might air out. Depending upon how many days a week one practices (this one practices six days a week at formal classes and on the remaining day with his daughter), it might be desireable to have more than one gi. One on line resource is Aikido Journal, an on line magazine dealing with aikido, as well as simply using the word "aikido" as your search word. Hopefully you will find many possibly helpful entries and listings. Be well, be wise and please, continue to practice the art of peace.

Can I use a karate uniform in judo?

You can but it is not advisable. Some dojo may require a  judo gi. Karate gi are not made to withstand the constant grappling that is done in judo. Therefore it will not hold up long in a judo class. In our dojo we mostly use a medium weight gi. While this is stronger than the what many use in a karate class it will not last long in a judo class. We still grapple but not as much as done in judo.

Help with Judogis / Judo Gis?

ALWAYS use the size chart for that brand. Gi vary greatly from one brand to another. I have bought many Karate Gi from many different suppliers. It has taught me that if I order a size without checking their size chart or calling them first, it is very easy to buy a Gi that does not fit. 

Is there a difference between a Jujitsu uniform and a Judo uniform?

The collar is one difference, at least in BJJ. A (BJ)JJ Gi is more durable, since you grab not only the jacket in (B)JJ. Or maybe my Judo Gi sucked in quality. :P A Judo Gi is pretty much the same. Won't matter much now in the start, and they're usually a lot cheaper. They are more common to find, too. They feel a bit thicker on the top, though. Cause they need to resist the grappling.I found it hard to move on the ground with my Gi. Competitions allow only (B)JJ Gi's, though. I ordered mine from my instructor and it feels great, so i recommend you speaking with your instructor, but your son have to take his time and feel if JJ is really his style before you put money on more stuff.