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Gi vs No-Gi Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu: Differences & Which To Choose

If you’re considering starting Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) here in the Sutherland Shire, one of the first decisions you’ll need to make is whether to train in a Gi or No-Gi style. At Gracie Miranda, we offer both options, as we believe there are benefits to each. In this post, we’ll explore the differences between Gi and No-Gi BJJ and help you decide which might be the best fit for your goals.

gracie miranda brazilian jiu jitsu group photo

What is Gi BJJ?

Gi BJJ is the traditional form of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, where practitioners wear a uniform consisting of a heavy cotton jacket (the Gi), trousers, and a belt indicating their rank. The Gi provides numerous grips and handles that can be used to control your opponent, apply chokes, and execute throws and sweeps. Gi BJJ tends to be slower-paced and more technical, with a focus on grips and controlling your opponent’s Gi.

What is No-Gi BJJ?

In No-Gi BJJ, practitioners wear shorts and a rash guard instead of the traditional Gi. Without the Gi grips, No-Gi BJJ relies more on speed, wrestling-style takedowns, and control using body locks and grips on your opponent’s body. No-Gi tends to be faster-paced and more explosive, as there are fewer grips to slow down the action.

Key Differences Between Gi and No-Gi BJJ

Grips: The presence or absence of the Gi drastically changes the gripping options available. Gi BJJ involves a lot of collar, sleeve, and lapel grips, while No-Gi focuses on underhooks, overhooks, and clinches.

Pace: Gi BJJ is generally slower-paced, as the grips allow for more control and a more methodical approach. No-Gi is often faster and more scramble-oriented.

Techniques: While many techniques overlap, some moves are more effective with the Gi grips, while others work better in No-Gi. For example, collar chokes are a staple of Gi BJJ, while leg locks are more prevalent in No-Gi.

gracie miranda no-gi class group photo

Which Style is Better for Self-Defence?

Both Gi and No-Gi BJJ are highly effective for self-defence. The Gi can simulate the grips an attacker might get on your clothing, teaching you how to defend against and use those grips to your advantage. However, No-Gi training is also valuable, as it prepares you for situations where you or your attacker may not be wearing heavy clothing.

Which Style is Better for Sport Jiu-Jitsu?

If you’re interested in competing in BJJ, it’s important to note that there are separate competitions for Gi and No-Gi. Many high-level competitors train and compete in both styles to develop a well-rounded skill set. Ultimately, the best style for sport Jiu-Jitsu depends on your personal preferences and competition goals.

Our Recommendation: Train Both Gi and No-Gi

At Gracie Miranda, we believe the best approach is to train both Gi and No-Gi BJJ. Each style offers unique benefits and challenges that will help you develop a comprehensive understanding of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. By training in both, you’ll be prepared for a wider range of situations, whether you’re focused on self-defence or sport Jiu-Jitsu.

Join Us in the Sutherland Shire

No matter which style you choose, we invite you to join our welcoming BJJ community here at Gracie Miranda in the Sutherland Shire. Our experienced instructors will guide you through the techniques and strategies of both Gi and No-Gi BJJ, helping you develop the skills and confidence to succeed on and off the mats. Schedule your free trial class today!