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What is the difference between a Jiu Jitsu Uniform and a Judo Gi?

Recently, KarateMart.com began carrying some new lines of high quality Jiu Jitsu uniforms. We had always carried Judo uniforms in the past, but had never really considered carrying Jiu Jitsu gi because they are so similar and we didn't get many requests for them. Since adding them to KarateMart.com, one of the most common questions our customer service team answers is "What is the difference between a Jiu Jitsu uniform and a Judo Gi?". So, I figured this would be a great topic to discuss on our blog.

Perhaps the number one reason why Judo practitioners use a Judo gi and Jiu Jitsu players use a Jiu Jitsu gi is because of the rules enforced during competitions. For everyday training, either uniform could be used for either sport, but during tournaments and competitions, both Jiu Jitsu and Judo have strict rules about the length, weight, and cut of the uniform worn by its contestants. For the most part, these rules are not heavily enforced unless another contestant complains, but I have attended tournaments where these rules were enforced to a greater extent.

In most Jiu Jitsu competitions, contestants are free to wear a Judo or Jiu Jitsu uniform. The rules pertaining to uniforms are typically not as strict as Judo competitions, but many contestants feel that it is to their advantage to wear a Jiu Jitsu uniform because they are lighter weight and may help protect them against some of the more common chokes, grabs, and techniques. Jiu Jitsu uniforms typically have shorter and narrower sleeves, which can act as a deterrent against many arm or sleeve grabs. The uniform itself is generally cut tighter than a Judo uniform and has a shorter skirt.

Judo competitions which are sanctioned by popular organizations like the IJF are usually much stricter about their uniform rules. Skinny sleeved Jiu Jitsu gi are typically not allowed because they will not meet the regulations of Judo which enforce at least 10cm of space between the jacket sleeves and the contestant's arms. Many Judo tournament regulations also state that a jacket must be long enough to cover the contestant's thighs and the sleeves must reach the fists when your arms are relaxed to the sides of your body. The jacket lapels tend to be stiffer and stronger on Judo uniforms because of all the throwing and pulling involved in the art. Judo pants typically have some sort of additional reinforced knee padding, while many Jiu Jitsu uniforms do not.

The best thing to do when deciding to purchase any new martial arts uniform is to talk with your instructor and other students in your class. If you have any additional questions or further insight about this topic, please feel free to contact us anytime. We take pride in our extensive knowledge of the martial arts and have over 30 years of experience selling martial arts supplies.

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2 Comment(s)
1/4/16 - 4:04am
Thank you, this post helped a lot! I suppose there is little difference between Jiu Jitsu Uniforms and BJJ Uniforms?
4/14/18 - 4:14pm
I was shopping for a durable uniform to wear and decided I would look at Judo and Jiu-Jitsu uniforms just for fun even though my style is Karate'. As my mind began to wonder what the difference is between these two uniforms, BEHOLD! There was a hyperlink right in the advertisement leading me to an informative blog post about my specific question. KarateMart.com is THE best place for ordering martial arts supplies. They have an excellent selection, good customer service, competitive pricing.

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