Judo Attire: How to Choose and Wear a Judo Gi

Judo is a popular martial art that requires discipline, focus, and the right attire. Choosing the right Judo Gi can make all the difference in your performance and comfort level. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned judoka, knowing how to choose and wear your Judo Gi is crucial. A well-fitted Judo Gi will not only enhance your technique but also give you the confidence to perform at your best. But with so many options available in the market, it can be overwhelming to know where to start. In this article, we will guide you through the process of choosing and wearing a Judo Gi, including the essential features to look for, how to properly size your Gi, and the best ways to wear and care for your Judo uniform. So, whether you are a newbie or a pro, read on to learn everything you need to know about Judo attire.

What is a Judo Gi?

A Judo Gi is a traditional Japanese martial arts uniform that consists of a jacket, pants, and a belt. The jacket, also known as the Uwagi or Judogi, is made of heavy cotton canvas or woven fabric and has a thick collar that provides a grip for throws and chokes. The pants also called the Zubon or Sashiko, are made of the same material as the jacket and have a drawstring waistband. The belt, or Obi, is used to secure the jacket and pants, and it indicates the wearer's rank or skill level.

The Judo Gi has a loose and comfortable fit to allow for a full range of motion and to facilitate grappling techniques. The uniform is designed to be durable and withstand the rigors of training and competition. It is also designed to be easy to grip, which is essential for executing throws and takedowns.

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How to choose the right Judo Gi - Size, Material, and Color

Choosing the right Judo Gi is crucial for both performance and comfort. Here are the essential features to look for when selecting a Judo Gi:


The Judo Gi should fit comfortably and allow for a full range of motion. It is essential to choose the right size to avoid discomfort and hindered performance. Judo Gi sizes are based on height and weight, and most brands offer a size chart to help you find the right fit. When measuring yourself, make sure to stand straight and measure your height without shoes. Also, measure your weight in kilograms, as most size charts use the metric system.


The material of the Judo Gi should be durable, comfortable, and easy to care for. Most Judo Gis are made of cotton canvas or woven fabric, which provides a good balance of durability and comfort. However, some brands offer Judo Gis made of synthetic materials, which are lighter and easier to care for but may not be as durable as cotton Gis.


The color of the Judo Gi is also an essential consideration. Most Judo Gis come in white, blue, or black, although some brands offer a wider range of colors. The color of the Gi can indicate the wearer's rank, with white being the most common color for beginners and black for advanced practitioners. Some competitions also require a specific color for the uniform, so make sure to check the rules before purchasing a Gi.

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How to properly wear a Judo Gi - Step-by-Step Guide

Wearing a Judo Gi may seem straightforward, but there are some essential steps to follow to ensure proper fit and comfort. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to wear a Judo Gi:

1. Put on the jacket - Start by holding the jacket with the collar facing away from you. Slip your arms through the sleeves and adjust the collar so that it sits comfortably around your neck.

2. Tie the belt - Wrap the belt around your waist and cross the ends over at the back. Bring the ends to the front and tie a knot, making sure that the belt is snug but not too tight.

3. Adjust the jacket - Make sure that the jacket is centered on your body and that the lapels overlap evenly. Adjust the sleeves so that they fall just above your wrists, and make sure that the jacket is not too tight or too loose.

4. Put on the pants - Put one leg through the opening of the pants and pull them up to your waist. Repeat with the other leg and adjust the pants so that they sit comfortably on your hips.

5. Tie the pants - Tie the drawstring of the pants, making sure that they are snug but not too tight. The pants should be loose enough to allow for a full range of motion.

6. Adjust the uniform - Make any necessary adjustments to the uniform, such as tucking in the jacket or adjusting the belt. The uniform should be comfortable and allow for a full range of motion.

Judo belt colors and their meanings

The Judo belt, or Obi, is an essential part of the Judo Gi, as it indicates the practitioner's rank or skill level. Judo belts come in various colors, with each color representing a different rank. Here are the most common Judo belt colors and their meanings:

- White - This is the color of the beginner's belt and represents purity and innocence.

- Yellow - The yellow belt represents the first promotion from the beginner's rank and indicates a basic understanding of Judo techniques.

- Orange - The orange belt represents the second promotion and indicates a more advanced understanding of Judo techniques.

- Green - The green belt represents the third promotion and indicates a high level of technical proficiency.

- Blue - The blue belt represents the fourth promotion and indicates a mastery of Judo techniques.

- Brown - The brown belt represents the fifth promotion and indicates a high level of skill and experience.

- Black - The black belt represents the highest rank in Judo and indicates a mastery of Judo techniques and principles.

Basic Judo rules and etiquette

Judo has a set of rules and etiquette that practitioners must follow to ensure safety and respect. Here are some basic Judo rules and etiquette:

- Bowing - Bowing is an essential part of Judo etiquette and is a sign of respect for your opponent, instructor, and the art of Judo.

- Safety - Safety is paramount in Judo, and practitioners must follow proper techniques and guidelines to avoid injury.

- Sportsmanship - Judo is a sport that emphasizes mutual respect and sportsmanship. Practitioners must demonstrate good sportsmanship and respect their opponents, regardless of their skill level.

- Competition rules - Judo competitions have specific rules and guidelines that practitioners must follow. Familiarize yourself with the rules before competing to avoid disqualification.

Maintenance and care for your Judo Gi

Proper maintenance and care for your Judo Gi are essential to ensure its longevity and performance. Here are some tips for maintaining and caring for your Judo Gi:

- Wash your Gi after each use - Sweat and bacteria can accumulate in your Judo Gi, causing it to smell and deteriorate. Wash your Gi after each use with a mild detergent and hang it to dry in a well-ventilated area.

- Avoid bleach and fabric softener - Bleach and fabric softener can damage the fabric of your Judo Gi and reduce its durability. Use a mild detergent and avoid harsh chemicals.

- Mend any tears or rips - Check your Judo Gi regularly for any tears or rips and mend them promptly to avoid further damage.

- Store your Gi properly - Store your Judo Gi in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight and moisture. Fold it neatly to avoid creases and wrinkles.

Alternatives to traditional Judo Gi

While the traditional Judo Gi is the most common uniform for Judo practitioners, there are alternative options available. Here are some alternatives to the traditional Judo Gi:

- Rashguards and shorts - Rashguards and shorts are a popular option for No-gi Judo, which is a variation of Judo that does not require a Gi. Rashguards and shorts provide comfort and flexibility and are ideal for hot and humid climates.

- Judo-specific compression gear - Some brands offer compression gear specifically designed for Judo, which provides support and flexibility while maintaining the traditional look of the Judo Gi.

There are many Judo brands available in the market, but some stand out for their quality and durability. Here are some recommended Judo brands and where to buy them:

- Mizuno - Mizuno is a Japanese brand known for its high-quality Judo Gis and other martial arts equipment. Mizuno Gis are durable, and comfortable, and come in various sizes and colors. You can buy Mizuno Gis on their official website or on Amazon.

- Adidas - Adidas is a well-known sports brand that offers a range of Judo Gis and other martial arts equipment. Adidas Gis are durable, comfortable, and come in various sizes and colors. You can buy Adidas Gis on their official website or on Amazon.

- Fuji - Fuji is a U.S.-based brand that offers a range of Judo Gis and other martial arts equipment. Fuji Gis are durable, and comfortable, and come in various sizes and colors. You can buy Fuji Gis on their official website or on Amazon.

Choosing the right Judo Gi and wearing it properly is essential for performance, comfort, and safety in Judo. Make sure to consider the size, material, and color of the Gi, and follow the proper steps to wear it correctly. Also, remember to follow Judo etiquette and rules and maintain and care for your Gi properly to ensure its longevity and performance. With the right Judo Gi and proper technique, you can take your Judo skills to the next level.