Having the right gear matters if you’re into Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. One piece of gear you should think about is a jiu jitsu rash guard. It keeps your skin safe from scrapes and mat burns. Plus, you’ll look cool. 😀
And rash guards are not cheap, so choosing the right Jiu Jitsu rash Guard is important. I tried many and made mistakes along the way. I want you to avoid those, so I am writing this Guide to provide you with all the information you need.
At the end of this post, you’ll know what to look for when buying your first rash guard.
Why Do People Wear A Rash Guard In No-Gi BJJ?
Ever thought, “Why can’t I just wear my regular gym clothes?” I used to think that. The result? Mat burns and a ton of rashes. My regular shirt would soak up sweat like a sponge and make me feel icky. Once I switched to wearing rashguards, it was like night and day.
Once you wear a rash guard, you don’t go back. They’re comfy in a way you’ll get once you try one. Don’t make my mistake. Invest in a good jiu-jitsu rash guard for your own comfort and safety. Here’s why Rash Guards are a must-have:
- Perfect Fit: A good BJJ rash guard fits nice and tight. No loose clothes to get in the way. This keeps you safe from accidental pulls and holds.
- Material Helps Your Skin: Polyester and spandex are usually what these rash guards are made of. These materials are great for protecting your skin from mat burns and scrapes.
- Health First: Some rash guards even fight off germs. That’s super cool ’cause, let’s be honest, the mat can be gross. A rash guard is your extra shield against nasty skin stuff like ringworm.
- Show Off Your Style: Rash guards come in cool designs. Whether you’re into long sleeve or short sleeve, you can find one that lets you show your own style.
- Less Injuries: Rash guards have very good compression and therefore reduce scrapes and other small injuries. That means you can focus on your grapple moves, not your burns.
- Sweat Less: The mix of polyester and spandex in rash guards helps to deal with sweat better than your old gym shirt. So you can focus more on your jiu jitsu training and less on feeling wet and uncomfortable.
- IBJJF-Legal: If you’re into more formal BJJ events, some rash guards meet IBJJF rules. So you can wear them in official matches, too!
So yeah, a rash guard is more than just a shirt. It has many benefits that make it worth the investment if you’re into no-gi jiu-jitsu. Now don’t get me wrong – BJJ Rash Guards are expensive. If you train often, it’s okay to wear a compression shirt or your regular Gym Shirt from time to time.
But most people, including me, are wearing BJJ Rash Guards. I found it to be a smart investment. So when I was broke, I bought less matcha latte, and that’s what made me able to afford the Rash Guards…
9 Things To Look For In A Jiu Jitsu Rash Guard
Through the years, I learned a lot about what makes a good jiu jitsu rash guard. I want to share my lessons with you so you can find the best rash guard for your needs. Let’s dive in.
1. Good Fit
The most important thing is a good fit. A rashguard that doesn’t fit well is a rashguard you won’t wear. It should be snug but not too tight, giving you a full range of motion for your grapples and moves. Adjustable waistbands and elastic cuffs make sure the fit is just right.
For a quick guide on sizes, check out this table:
|Size||Height in ft||Weight in lbs|
|Small||5′ – 5’3″||105 – 145|
|Medium||5’4″ – 5’9″||105 – 160|
|Large||5’2″ – 6’2″||120 – 190|
|Extra Large||5’3″ – 6’3″||175 – 225|
|2 Extra Large||6’1″ – 6’5″||200 – 265|
Remember, size charts can help, but they’re not the end-all-be-all. Don’t rely on this chart for every brand you want to purchase from.
I noticed too late that every brand has its own size chart. So I paid with unfitting Rash Guards. In the end, I had to send them back and order new ones in a different size.
If you’re unsure, it’s best to contact the manufacturer for advice. Also, check out our Guide on how a good Rash Guard should fit you.
2. High Quality
Investing in a top-notch rash guard from a well-known BJJ brand is a smart move for this demanding combat sport.
It might seem pricey at first. But let’s break it down: If you spend 50 bucks on a high-quality rash guard and use it 100 times, that’s just 50 cents per wear. A $20 rash guard may tear after 20 uses—you’re paying a dollar each time. So, in the long run, quality saves you money.
So what makes a rash guard high quality? These are some terms you need to look for in your rash guard:
- Flatlock stitching: It’s a stitch that holds well to all the movement and twisting in BJJ. It lays flat against your skin, so it won’t bother you while training.
- Reinforced stitching: The rash guard has high-end compression – at least four threads in the stitch. This ensures durability in your no-gi jiu jitsu rash guard.
- Multi-panel construction: This means the rash guard has extra fabric panels, like on the sides or back shoulders, that follow the shape of your body. It minimizes friction and gives you better movement and a proper fit.
- Silicone Waistband: This will keep the shirt in place and mesh armpit areas for better airflow.
But please be aware that high quality doesn’t mean you can be less careful with your gear! Always make sure to treat and care for your Rash Guard the right way.
I ruined many of my Rash Guards because I wasn’t washing and drying them the right way. If you take care of them, you’ll enjoy them for a loooong time.
3. Design and Style
Picking the right look for your jiu jitsu rashguard is kinda like picking the right tattoo—it’s all about what you like. You’ll find all sorts of styles out there. From tie-dye and gorillas to cool graphics, the sky’s the limit. Some rash guards also show your belt rank!
Here’s a quick rundown to help you pick:
- Your Style: Go with what you love, whether it’s simple or flashy. I’m a simple guy, so I use “boring” designs. But you’ll be surprised what people wear on the mats. You do you!
- Competition: Planning to compete? Make sure it’s IBJJF compliant. Rash guards that show your belt rank are usually a safe bet.
- Long-lasting Design: Look for sublimated graphics—they are more durable and won’t fade away with time. You don’t want your cool, expensive design to fade after a few washings…
4. The Fabric: Polyester and Spandex
Ever wonder why rash guards feel so good? It’s all about what they’re made of. Most rash guards use special materials that make them comfy and stretchy.
I even sometimes wear my Rash Guards outside BJJ practice just because they are so comfortable…:D Ask John Danaher, his whole wardrobe consists of Rash Guards.
Here’s what you need to know:
- SPF 50: Some top-notch rash guards have this. You can wear it outside and not worry about sunburn. Those saved me when I was training outside in Africa.
- 100% Polyester: These feel super soft and stretchy. But they might get a bit loose over time.
- Polyester and Spandex (Lycra) Mix: Usually, it’s 80% polyester and 20% spandex. This mix gives you a good feel and extra support. Great if you had injuries like me.
- Four-way Stretch: This is a must. Your rash guard needs to stretch every which way to keep up with your moves.
So when you’re out shopping, remember to check the label. The right fabric makes a big difference.
5. Short Sleeve vs. Long Sleeve
So you’re trying to pick your apparel: long sleeves or short sleeves rash guards? I get it, it’s a tough choice. Here’s how to decide:
- Pros: More protection for your arms. No scratches or burns here!
- Cons: Can get hot in warm weather.
- Pros: Breathes well. Keeps you cool when it’s hot out.
- Cons: Less arm protection. You might get some scrapes.
If you ask me, I lean towards long sleeves for the extra safety. But having both is not a bad idea. That way, you’re ready for any weather.
I use short sleeves when I’m in a hot, sticky Gym. And if wanna show my biceps…But tbh, when it comes to protection, the long-sleeve Rash Guards are better of course.
6. IBJJF Approved
Planning to compete in BJJ? Then you need to know about the IBJJF (International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation). They set the rules for most BJJ competitions.
So why does this matter for your rash guard choice? Well, IBJJF has some strict rules on what you can wear. According to their website, your rash guard should be:
- Made of elastic material and skin-tight
- Long enough to cover your torso down to your waistband
- Black, white, or a mix of black and white
- Have at least 10% of your belt color
So if you’re serious about competing, make sure your rash guard meets these rules. It’s got to be IBJJF-approved. That way, you won’t get any surprises on the big day.
7. Established BJJ Brands
I’d also recommend to go with a well-known BJJ brand because they know BJJ. Brands like Gold BJJ, Elite Sports BJJ, Hayabusa, Sanabul, and Origin are super committed to the sport.
That means they want to give you the best gear possible. Plus, these big brands usually have great customer support. If your rash guard isn’t perfect, they’ll help you sort it out.
When you buy from an established BJJ brand, you’re getting a rash guard tested by many athletes. They’re built to last, and they’re designed for the wear and tear of grappling.
In the beginning, I was buying Rash Guards from brands that weren’t focusing on BJJ or even MMA. I bought them because less expensive. But this was a mistake. First, they were lower quality, and second: We are BJJ Players – So we should support BJJ companies.
Not sure where to start? Check out my post on the best rash guards in 2023. I break down the top BJJ brands out there so you can make an informed choice.
8. Price and Value
So how much should you spend on a BJJ rash guard? Well, prices can go from around 20 bucks all the way up to 70. That’s a big range!
Higher prices often mean you get a high-quality rash guard with cool designs. But you can also find good budget options. It depends on what you’re looking for.
How to choose the best rash guard for your budget? Take a look at my list of the best BJJ rash guards on the market. You’ll get a good idea of what’s out there and how much you might need to spend.
Remember, sometimes, spending a bit more upfront can save you money in the long run.
I have Rash Guards I bought for 20 Dollars, and my most expensive Rash Guard costs 60 Dollars. And I see the difference. There’s a reason why they are more expensive. But of course, not everybody is able to pay that much.
So, in the beginning, go for the lower-priced ones, and once you get more serious about BJJ and want to compete, I recommend investing in a couple of higher-quality BJJ Rash Guards.
9. Training Partner Recommendations
If you’re still scratching your head about which rash guard to get, just ask your training partners! People who do BJJ love to talk about their rash guards. You grapple with these folks, so they know what’s up.
They have a lot of experience on the mat and probably tried all kinds of rash guards. They’ll tell you what’s durable, what fits well, and what doesn’t ride up when you’re in the middle of a roll.
I bought my best Rash Guards based on the experience of my training partners. So, next time you’re in training, just ask around. You’ll get the inside scoop on the best BJJ rash guards.
Additional Tips When Buying a Rash Guard
When you’re in the market for a new BJJ rash guard, there are a few extra tips you should keep in mind to make sure you get the best one for your training needs:
- Read the Reviews: Before buying, check out what others say. Reviews can give you real insights into how the rash guard holds up in training.
- Try Before You Buy: If possible, try on the rash guard. This way, you can make sure it fits well and feels comfortable.
- Look for Refundable Options: Make sure you can return or exchange the rash guard if it doesn’t meet your expectations.
- Check the Material: Look for materials that offer good stretch and durability. It should withstand the rigors of BJJ training.
- Pay Attention to Stitching: Ensure the rash guard has reinforced stitching. This can be the difference between a rash guard that lasts and one that falls apart.
Remember, the right rash guard will make a big difference in your training comfort and performance!
My Top Picks for BJJ Rash Guards
Over the years, I tried a bunch of rash guards. I’ve grappled, sweated, and rolled in them, so I know what works and what doesn’t. Here are my top picks for BJJ rash guards:
- Hayabusa Rash Guards: These are my favorites. They fit perfectly, are super comfortable, absorb sweat well, and are tough as nails. I’m always looking forward to wearing it. It’s definitely my go-to choice.
- RDX Rash Guard: This one’s a bit heavier, has a simpler design, and is incredibly reliable. I’ve had mine for ages, and it’s still going strong. If you’re looking for something durable that you can count on, the RDX is a solid pick.
- Elite Rash Guards: For those watching their wallets, Elite Rash Guards are where it’s at. They offer great quality at a more affordable price. These rash guards are a smart choice for anyone wanting quality without breaking the bank.
Want to see more of my favorites? Check out my full list of top BJJ rash guards here.
Choosing The Best No Gi Rashguard: Final Words
When I started in BJJ, I didn’t give much thought to my Jiu-Jitsu rash guard. Trust me, I paid for it. I lost time and money because I picked the wrong size, got low-quality ones, and didn’t compare different rash guards to each other.
Don’t be me. Picking the right gear is important. It’s like joining an elite club of BJJ athletes who take their sport seriously. So, find your perfect rash guard, and let’s get grappling!