Looking for your first Gi can be a very difficult and confusing task. After training fee’s your Gi will be your second biggest investment.
There are so many good reviews online which only add to the confusion. While a review is good, the comfort and the fit type is very individual as we are all built differently.
Although it should come down to personal choice where some people will prefer a looser fit while others a tighter fit. You should find out what is allowed in competitions that you intend to enter as some Gi’s may not make the cut, but prove to be great for training.
The Material or the Weave: Stiff vs Soft
A stiff lapel will be harder to get choked with, while the soft is more comfortable to wear. The lightest of all Gi’s will be Ultra Lite, Pro Lite, Lightweight, Pearl, Summer. Any of these Gi’s will be great for competition or summer time, they will have a high breathability and be easy to manipulate.
A Single weave Gi will usually be a bit thicker than the previously mentioned, however it will last for a decent amount of time. After this we have the Gold weave Gi’s, these will be somewhere between the single and the double. They offer more durability and will be harder for your opponent to grip.
And finally the Double weave Gi, these can be considered your Iron Man Armor as it will last forever. Suited best for training rather than competition due to its weight and lack of mobility which is not ideal during a match.
Some like the hardiness of double stitching, others don’t like the feel of it. Many new Gi’s are being made with stitching in a contrasting colour which some people will appreciate while others do not.
Labels and Patches:
Some like a flashy Gi while others prefer a simple and plain one. Check with your instructor and the competitions that you wish to enter as many times lots of labels or patches can be a big no no.