BJJ Gi Review – Gr1ps Athletics Arte Suave

My name is Marie and I am a BJJ Gi addict. Yup I feel I should start this blog with this confession. Whilst at the Euros I had no intention of buying another gi and then I saw another athlete wearing this one. Simple styling combined with the tattoo artwork instantly drew my attention to it and my little gi buying devil was awoken. Before I knew it I was revisiting the grips stall for closer inspection. Luckily for me their card machine was broken which resulted in me checking it out online and finding it significantly cheaper including shipping which meant (thanks to my hubby’s credit card) it was delivered a few days after arriving home!

I already have a Gr1p’s female gi but this one is a male fitting gi (A1 size). This is a limited edition gi and the blurb claims it was made in “collaboration with the coolest tattoo artists”.  Arte Suave, which means “Gentle Art” in Portuguese, is the direct translation of “Jiu-Jitsu.” The blurb included how the gi is supposed to bring to life the ethos of a more playful and relaxed culture focused on art and technique rather than striking and punching so far so good!

Grips arte gi The Gi jacket is a thing of beauty. There are a lot of lovely details in the design with the partial rash guard lining and tattoo print as well as the label informing you that this gi is a limited edition and that I was owner 54/80 for the A1 sizing. It’s made of a cotton pearl weave and has all the triple stitching and reinforcements you’d expect from a good quality gi. The shoulders are slightly padded with mesh fabric but don’t worry were talking 80’s power dressing! It’s very much more about comfort! It also allegedly has extra thick lapels which got me comparing it to the other gi’s in our house. Now I’d argue there thicker than average but not usually so compared to some other brands including other Gr1ps, Shoyoroll and Killer Bee.

Grips arte gi The Gi Pants are ripstop and claim to be more tailored and pre-shrunk to result is less shrinking. The knees are padded with a mesh fabric with triple stitching and reinforcements in all the right places. Plus the draw string is a lovely padded elasticated one which potentially means less re-tying. Again with some lovely little details including the tattoo printing inside the crotch area.

Overall this is a very light gi by my scales only weighing 1.4kg equalling my competition gigs and as I saw an athlete wearing at the euros on the mat I can only assume it is fully IBJFF competition legal and I can’t see any reason why it wouldn’t be!

This is one of those gi’s I’ve pretty much fell in love with. The gi pants fitted straight out of the bag. The jacket whilst wearable does feel a little baggy straight out of the bag which is a common problem for me. But it wasn’t too big that it stopped me wearing it to a seminar the day it arrived!

In terms of those all important measurements:

Out of the Bag After 3 Washes
Body Length  72cm 71cm
Body Width 55cm  54.5cm
Wing Span 158.5cm  158.5cm
Sleeve Length 50cm  50cm
Cuff Width 16.5cm 16.5cm
Inside Leg 71.5cm 71.5cm
Outside Leg 93cm 92cm
Pant Width 21cm 21cm

*3 Washes = cold wash, tumble spin and air drying. For Gi Map click here.

imageI really loved this gi for training. Its as light as my competition gi and feels very similar. Its just much more detailed and prettier! Yes the jacket is a little large but not noticeably so. In fact a friend who saw me at a seminar mentioned how slim I was looking wearing it (so I’ll take that as a bonus). I can’t honestly say that the extra size felt that different in rolling or effected grip breaking. I can’t say that the padding on the shoulder make any difference in terms of performance but I do like the extra padding in the legs – every little helps with the takedown game! Like my other Grips gi the drawstring is lovely and generally stays tied and in place. As you can see this gi did not shrink much at all. In fact there has been virtually no shrinkage! Obviously this is a massive positive but also something to bare in mind when choosing your size.

seminar gi pic montage Overall this is a great gi. Stylish and suitable for both the gym and the competition mat. Its certainly my new favourite travel / seminar gi! However the fact there is no shrinkage combined with it being a male fitting gi means that for many female grapplers this isn’t just a viable option. But guys your in for a treat if you purchase it!

If you want one of your own I purchased this via UK Martial Arts and Fitness Distribution on Amazonand ended up paying £132.70 including shipping. However it is still available elsewhere from other stockists too.

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