Just as every sport needs uniforms, karate does too. The first thing one should be aware of when enrolling for a karate class is that there are specific attires for the sport. While others may just call them uniforms others will prefer calling them ‘gi’. These uniforms are normally made up of three distinct parts; the pants, belt and jacket.
Although red karate gi’s come in various colors with white being the most prevalent, they all contain the same qualities. and while it seems like going for any kind of gi to be a good idea, there are several things to consider prior to purchasing one. So what are these qualities you should consider when buying one?
Choosing the correct size that fits you perfectly is the most problematic challenge that people face when buying a gi. While there might be a slight variation in sizes depending on the various brands, you should be able to find one that is close if not perfect. To best avoid the mistake of going for one that is too small or big, it is a good idea to look at the measurements in cm rather than looking at an overall single digit size. For instance go with the one that says 180cm instead of size 4.
2. Type And Cut
Over the years the gi’s have developed. There are different types of gi’s now available for different styles of training, grade, club/personal preference and build.
However there are majorly two cuts one should be aware of depending on how you would classify them; the European and the Japanese cuts, and the kata and kumite.
Japanese cuts feature shorter pants and sleeves with longer jackets while European cuts usually have longer pants and sleeves.
Kata gi’s are mostly meant for pre arranged forms while kumite are meant for sparring. Normally kata cuts are heavier and almost similar to Japanese cuts while kumite are lighter and almost similar to European cuts. These cuts are more of personal preference.
3. Cost, Quality, Weight And Material
Weave combinations and new material are constantly being developed for the various karate gi’s. however the major two materials being noted to be mostly used for the gi’s are polyester and cotton.
There are also various weaves used, for instance the single weave which is cooler and lighter, the double weave which is thicker and heavier. Each of these materials and weaves have their own advantages and disadvantages and so it all comes down to what one likes.
Poly-Cotton is perhaps the most preferred material to be used as it is less expensive and lighter as compared to pure cotton.
Now that we know what to look for when purchasing a red karate gi, lets now look at some of the gi’s available;
The ProForce Gladiator gi’s come in glorious red color and various sizes hence it wouldn’t be difficult to find the one that fits you well. This gi is not only affordable but it is has also been built to last. The entire gi is made of
polyester/cotton blend making it easier to be maintained as well as
cleaned. It is wrinkle free which is a handy feature since you have to carry it in your bag. The pants and jacket materials have been stitched with reinforced seams which means they can withstand pulling and tugging during your training sessions.
Apart from it being wrinkle free, the fabric weighs approximately 7.5oz. making it a good option when looking for a karate gi. Its elasticated waistband also offers flexibility and comfort which most people are looking for and cannot find with the drawstring variety.
The ProForce Gladiator pants have also been made in such a way that their crotch is gusseted. Gusseted crotches translate to durability and is rare, not all pants have them. This extra element also assists with movement as they allow for flexibility during stretching and kicking.
These uniforms are perfect for children and new students. They are designed for competition, demo’s or everyday training. They are definitely a good option for those serious about their trainings or lessons and are looking to invest on a
long term basis.
The Tiger Claw red karate uniform is a bit different than the ProForce Gladiator however it is also another great addition to your gear. Perhaps the most advantageous thing about Tiger Claw red karate gi over the ProForce Gladiator gi is that it is more affordable.
The fabric weight of this gi is 7.5oz., meaning it falls under the middle weight level. It is available in glorious red however there are other several hues as well. It also has an elastic waistband and includes a white belt too.
The uniform is made from polyester/cotton material which means there will be virtually no wrinkling or shrinking. The pants’ crotch is gusseted and stitched with double seams hence you won’t have to worry about them splitting when training or in competition. However unlike the ProForce Gladiator, the waistband on the Tiger Claw red karate gi has a drawstring in place. This is an important feature as it offers a back up way of cinching in case the elastic becomes loose. This is also helpful for those in karate looking to be in shape. Having the drawstrings besides elastic will allow you to adjust your pant’s waist whenever needed without having to replace your gi altogether since you might end up losing some inches. This will save you money!
These uniforms come in various sizes ranging from little kids who are just starting karate to larger adults who are in need of a durable gi that can take a beating.
This is the lowest gi on the medium weight level. This does not mean that it is of low quality but it may be of a lesser quality. It is meant for those wanting to start karate classes but are still unsure if they are going to like it or stick with
it. And if you discover that karate isn’t for you then you shouldn’t invest
hugely in it. However if it turns out that you like it then you would rather
have a gi that is tugged sufficiently to take a beating and this is where
Middleweight 7.5 oz Traditional Karate Uniform comes in.
The fabric’s weight is at 7.7oz., which is approximately where you want your gi to fall at if you are going to be using it more often. Even though it is a bit
more rugged as compared to the light weight ones, it is a bit sturdily built
making it the best selection as you will likely be having your instructor and
other students tug on your jacket during the training.
Middleweight 7.5 oz Traditional Karate Uniform pants as well as the jacket have been layered with a extra fabric which not only make them durable and strong but also comfortable to wear and move around in. the pants’ waistband is elastic and also has drawstring in place, a three piece gusseted crotch.
Even though cheaper, this should not be a reason to make you shy away from this gi. It is a well built gi that could be a sure replacement option in your training kit for the meantime before you decide to upgrade.
Final Thoughts regarding Red Karate Gi
Once you have acquired your red karate gi, you’re going to ensure you wear them properly. This might seem such a straightforward step but it isn’t. There are do’s and don’ts that need to be considered. Of course pants are self
explanatory but when it comes to wearing the belt and jacket, things get
tricky. So how do you go about it;
How To Put On A Jacket
- After putting on your uniforms, slip on the jacket just as you would do a regular jacket
- Ensure the right flap is folded to the left side before tying the strings inside the jacket
- If done correctly, the left flap should be on the outside.
How To Tie The Belt
- Hold the center of the belt flat against your waist while making sure the labeled end is on your left
- Cross the belt around the back ensuring the ends cross in the middle before wrapping them on either sides
- Run your fingers through the belt to make sure it is flat
- Cross the belt on the stomach with the left inside. Then wrap the outer layer below the other layers while pulling diagonally to tighten
- If done properly, the end would come out top on the left bending to the right
Another consideration that is very important not to be left out when it comes to karate gi in general, is caring for them.
Also consider consulting with your instructor on what kind of gi you need for your classes. Not all instructors allow their students to wear any uniform, some might prefer white while others red. However this doesn’t really matter as what matters is attentiveness to lessons and seriousness.
In overall karate can be enjoyed by anyone regardless of one’s age, and is also a great way to getting in shape. It also teaches you how you can defend yourself. So if you are thinking to taking up training lessons, ensure you get yourself a nice gi as it will definitely determine how the experience will be!