How To Wash Jiu Jitsu Gi?

So you’ve just finished a grueling jiu jitsu session, sweat dripping and adrenaline rushing, but now comes the not-so-fun part – washing your Jiu Jitsu Gi. Whether you’re a seasoned practitioner or a beginner, proper care and maintenance of your Gi is essential to ensure longevity and hygiene. In this article, we’ll walk you through the step-by-step process of how to wash your Jiu Jitsu Gi, from pre-soaking to drying techniques, so that you can keep your Gi clean and ready for your next training session.

Understanding the Importance of Keeping Jiu Jitsu Gi Clean

Maintaining cleanliness and hygiene is essential in any sport, and Jiu Jitsu is no exception. A clean Jiu Jitsu gi not only promotes personal hygiene and health but also prevents the degradation of the gi itself. Additionally, keeping your gi clean is a way to show respect for the sport and your training partners. Therefore, understanding the importance of keeping your Jiu Jitsu gi clean is crucial for every practitioner.

Promoting hygiene and health

Bacteria and odor can easily build up on a Jiu Jitsu gi due to the intense physical contact involved in training. Sweat, dirt, and other impurities can accumulate on the fabric, creating an environment conducive to bacterial growth. Regularly washing your gi helps eliminate these bacteria, reducing the risk of infections and unpleasant odors. By maintaining proper hygiene, you not only protect yourself but also your fellow training partners.

Preventing gi degradation

Jiu Jitsu gis are subjected to a significant amount of wear and tear during training sessions. The accumulation of sweat, dirt, and even blood can lead to the degradation of the fabric over time. Cleaning your gi promptly after each use helps prevent stains from setting in and enhances the longevity of the garment. By taking care of your gi, you ensure that it remains in top condition, allowing you to continue training without the need for frequent replacements.

Maintaining the respect of the sport

In Jiu Jitsu, respect for the art, your training partners, and the gi itself is highly valued. Keeping your gi clean is a way to display this respect. A dirty or foul-smelling gi not only shows a lack of personal hygiene but may also be seen as disrespectful to your training partners. By maintaining a clean and well-cared for gi, you not only uphold the traditions of the sport but also demonstrate your commitment and dedication to Jiu Jitsu.

Examining Your Jiu Jitsu Gi Pre-Wash

Before proceeding with the washing process, it is important to examine your Jiu Jitsu gi thoroughly. This pre-wash inspection helps identify any potential issues that require special attention or treatment.

Checking for tears and loose patches

Inspect your gi for any tears, loose patches, or other areas that require repair. Fixing these issues before washing prevents further damage and ensures that your gi remains in good condition. Pay close attention to the seams, collar, and cuffs, as these areas are more prone to wear and tear.

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Identifying heavily soiled areas

Take note of any heavily soiled areas on your gi. This could include areas with visible stains or areas that have absorbed a significant amount of sweat and dirt. Identifying these areas helps determine the appropriate pre-treatment steps needed to effectively remove the stains or dirt.

Inspecting for color transfer

If your gi is a colored or patterned fabric, it is important to check for any signs of color transfer. This can occur if the fabric is not colorfast or if it has been previously washed with other garments that bleed color. Look for any discoloration or patches of color on your gi, as this may require special treatment to avoid further color transfer during the wash.

Pre-Treatment Steps for Your Jiu Jitsu Gi

Certain pre-treatment steps can help prepare your Jiu Jitsu gi for the wash, especially if it is heavily soiled or stained. These pre-treatment steps target specific areas that require extra attention.

Pre-soaking heavily soiled areas

For heavily soiled areas, pre-soaking can be beneficial in loosening dirt and stains. Fill a basin or sink with warm water and add a small amount of mild detergent. Submerge the affected areas of your gi in the soapy water and allow them to soak for approximately 30 minutes before proceeding with the wash. This pre-soaking process helps break down the dirt and stains, making them easier to remove during the wash cycle.

Using stain removers

For stubborn stains that do not come out during pre-soaking or regular washing, using a stain remover can be effective. Choose a stain remover specifically formulated for the type of stain you are dealing with, whether it is blood, grass, or sweat stains. Apply the stain remover directly to the affected area, following the instructions on the product label. Allow the stain remover to penetrate the fabric for the recommended duration before proceeding with the wash.

Ensuring color retention

If you have noticed color transfer on your gi or want to maintain the vibrancy of colored or patterned fabric, consider using color retention products. These products help prevent colors from fading or bleeding during the wash. Follow the instructions on the product packaging, as different color retention products may have varying application methods. By ensuring color retention, you can keep your gi looking fresh and vibrant even after multiple washes.

How to Machine Wash Jiu Jitsu Gi

Machine washing your Jiu Jitsu gi is a convenient way to clean it thoroughly. However, it is important to follow the proper steps to avoid damaging the fabric or compromising the effectiveness of the wash.

Choosing the correct temperature

First, determine the appropriate water temperature for washing your gi. Check the care label on your gi for specific instructions, as different fabrics may require different temperature settings. In general, use cold or warm water to prevent color fading and shrinking. Hot water should be avoided unless the care label explicitly recommends it.

Determining cycle type

Select the appropriate cycle type on your washing machine for your Jiu Jitsu gi. The delicate or gentle cycle is typically suitable for most gis, as it minimizes agitation and reduces the risk of damage to the fabric. Avoid using the heavy-duty or long cycle, as these can be harsh on the fabric and may cause unnecessary wear.

Effective detergent usage

Choose a mild detergent suitable for your Jiu Jitsu gi. Harsh detergents can be too aggressive on the fabric and may cause damage or color fading. Follow the recommended amount of detergent specified on the product packaging, but avoid overloading the machine with detergent as excessive suds can be difficult to rinse off completely.

To use fabric conditioner or not

Deciding whether to use fabric conditioner is a personal preference. Fabric conditioners can help soften the fabric and add a fresh scent to your gi. However, some practitioners prefer to avoid fabric conditioners as they can potentially create a slippery surface, making it harder to grip during training. If you choose to use fabric conditioner, follow the instructions on the product packaging and use it sparingly.

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How to Hand Wash Jiu Jitsu Gi

If you prefer to hand wash your Jiu Jitsu gi or do not have access to a washing machine, follow these steps to ensure a thorough and effective cleaning.

Preparation and soaking

Fill a clean basin or sink with cold or warm water, depending on the care label instructions. Add a small amount of mild detergent and mix it in the water to create a soapy solution. Submerge your gi into the soapy water, gently agitating it to ensure the detergent is evenly distributed. Allow the gi to soak for approximately 30 minutes to loosen dirt and stains.

Hand washing techniques

After the gi has soaked, gently rub the fabric together to loosen any remaining dirt or stains. Pay extra attention to heavily soiled areas or stains that require additional treatment. Avoid scrubbing vigorously, as this can lead to unnecessary wear and tear on the fabric. Instead, use a gentle squeezing motion to work the detergent through the fabric and remove any impurities.

Rinsing properly

Thoroughly rinse your Jiu Jitsu gi with cold water to remove all traces of detergent. Continue rinsing until the water runs clear and there are no suds remaining. Squeezing the fabric gently during rinsing helps remove excess detergent and ensures a clean rinse. Avoid wringing or twisting the fabric, as this can result in stretching or damaging the fabric fibers.

Drying Your Jiu Jitsu Gi

Properly drying your Jiu Jitsu gi is crucial to prevent shrinkage, maintain its shape, and avoid any unpleasant odors caused by dampness. Whether you choose to air dry or use a machine dryer, following the appropriate drying methods is essential.

Air drying methods

The most preferred method of drying a Jiu Jitsu gi is air drying. Hang your gi in a well-ventilated area, preferably outdoors or near an open window. Ensure the gi is evenly spread out to facilitate proper airflow and quick drying. Avoid direct sunlight, as it can fade the colors of your gi. It is also important to hang the gi away from any sources of heat to prevent shrinkage.

Machine drying tips

If you need to expedite the drying process or do not have enough time for air drying, using a machine dryer is an option. However, take caution to avoid high heat settings that can cause shrinkage or damage the fabric. Select the lowest heat setting or use the delicate cycle to minimize potential damage. Additionally, consider placing the gi in a laundry bag or pillowcase to protect it from excessive tumbling and friction.

Avoiding shrinkage

To minimize the risk of shrinkage, avoid exposing your Jiu Jitsu gi to excessive heat or high dryer settings. Shrinkage is a common issue when the fabric is subjected to high temperatures. By following the appropriate drying methods and temperature settings, you can maintain the size and fit of your gi, extending its lifespan.

The Proper Folding and Storing of Jiu Jitsu Gi

After your Jiu Jitsu gi is clean and dry, it is important to fold and store it properly to prevent wrinkles and maintain its freshness.

Folding techniques

To fold your gi, start by laying it flat on a clean surface. Fold the sleeves across the chest, aligning them parallel to the bottom hem. Then, fold the gi in half vertically, bringing the bottom hem up to meet the collar. Finally, fold the gi in half horizontally, bringing the top collar down to meet the hem. This compact and uniform folding technique helps prevent excessive creases and wrinkles.

Storing to prevent wrinkles

Choose a suitable storage space for your folded gi. It is recommended to store it in a well-ventilated area away from excessive moisture or direct sunlight. Avoid leaving your gi in a gym bag or any confined space where it can become damp or develop an unpleasant odor. Hanging your gi in a closet or using a gi storage bag are alternative options that allow for proper air circulation and prevent wrinkles.

Keeping the gi fresh

To keep your gi fresh between washes, consider using a fabric refresher or deodorizing spray specially designed for sports apparel. These products help neutralize odors and keep your gi smelling clean and fresh. Follow the instructions on the product packaging to effectively eliminate any lingering odors and maintain the overall freshness of your gi.

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General Maintenance Tips for Jiu Jitsu Gi

In addition to regular washing practices, there are several general maintenance tips to keep your Jiu Jitsu gi in optimal condition.

Regular washing practices

To keep your gi in top shape, it is recommended to wash it after each training session or at least every few sessions. Regular washing prevents the buildup of sweat, odor, and bacteria, ensuring that your gi remains clean and hygienic. By incorporating washing into your post-training routine, you establish a habit that promotes cleanliness and extends the lifespan of your gi.

Mending rips and tears

Inspect your gi periodically for any rips, tears, or loose threads. These issues can worsen over time, leading to further damage or the need for expensive repairs. Promptly mend any small rips or loose threads using a needle and thread, or consider consulting a professional seamstress for more extensive repairs. By addressing these issues proactively, you can prevent further deterioration and maintain the integrity of your gi.

Periodic deep cleans

In addition to regular washing, periodic deep cleaning can help remove any deep-seated stains or odors that normal washing may not eliminate. Follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer or consult a professional cleaning service that specializes in Jiu Jitsu gear for deep cleaning options. This occasional deep cleaning can rejuvenate your gi and ensure that it remains fresh and hygienic over time.

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Washing Jiu Jitsu Gi

While washing your Jiu Jitsu gi is essential, there are some common mistakes that should be avoided to maintain its quality and longevity.


While it is important to regularly wash your gi, overwashing can be detrimental to the fabric. Excessive washing can cause unnecessary wear and tear, leading to color fading and shrinkage. Follow a regular washing schedule based on your training frequency and rinse your gi thoroughly after each session to remove sweat and bacteria. By finding the right balance, you can maintain the cleanliness of your gi without compromising its durability.

Improper drying

Improper drying techniques, such as using high heat or leaving your gi in a damp environment, can result in shrinkage, wrinkles, and unpleasant odors. Always follow the recommended drying methods, whether air drying or using a machine dryer. Take care to avoid excessive heat and ensure proper air circulation to prevent moisture buildup. By drying your gi correctly, you prolong its lifespan and maintain its overall quality.

Using the wrong detergent

Using harsh detergents or cleaners can damage the fabric of your Jiu Jitsu gi. Harsh chemicals can lead to color fading, fabric weakening, and skin irritation. Choose a mild detergent specifically formulated for sports clothing or delicate fabrics. Avoid using bleach or strong stain removers unless absolutely necessary. By using the right detergent, you can effectively clean your gi without compromising its integrity.

Beneficial Products for Keeping Jiu Jitsu Gi Clean

Several products can aid in keeping your Jiu Jitsu gi clean and in optimal condition. Consider incorporating these products into your washing routine for added effectiveness.

Specialist detergents

Specialist detergents formulated for sports apparel offer additional benefits, such as enhanced stain removal and odor control. These detergents are designed to target sweat and bacteria, ensuring a thorough clean for your gi. Choose a detergent that is suitable for your Jiu Jitsu gi fabric type and follow the instructions provided to achieve the best results.

Durable laundry bags

Investing in a durable laundry bag specifically designed for gym clothing can help protect your Jiu Jitsu gi during the washing process. These bags prevent the gi from tangling with other garments or getting damaged from excessive friction in the machine. Look for a laundry bag with a zippered closure and a fine mesh to keep your gi secure and free from snags.

Mild fabric conditioners

If you opt to use fabric conditioner, selecting a mild and sports-friendly option can help keep your gi soft and fresh without compromising grip during training. Look for fabric conditioners that are free from heavy fragrances or chemicals that can leave residue on the fabric. Use fabric conditioner sparingly to avoid excessive softening that may affect grip performance.

By incorporating these beneficial products into your washing routine, you can enhance the cleanliness and longevity of your Jiu Jitsu gi.

In conclusion, keeping your Jiu Jitsu gi clean is of utmost importance for personal hygiene, gi longevity, and respect for the sport. By understanding the importance of cleanliness, examining your gi pre-wash, following proper washing and drying techniques, folding and storing your gi correctly, and performing general maintenance, you can ensure that your Jiu Jitsu gi remains in top condition. Avoid common mistakes and consider using beneficial products to further enhance the cleanliness and freshness of your gi. By taking care of your gi, you not only promote personal hygiene and health but also show respect for the art of Jiu Jitsu and your fellow training partners.

Hi there! My name is Jesse Hull and I am the author behind the Jiu-Jitsu FC website. With a passion for Jiu-Jitsu, I've created this platform to share my love for the sport, along with valuable insights and techniques. At Jiu-Jitsu FC, we believe in the power of this martial art to transform lives and foster resilience. Through our blog, we aim to inspire and motivate others to discover their true potential. So join me on this journey of self-discovery and let's unlock the incredible power of Jiu-Jitsu together. Remember, Discover power. Discover resilience. Discover yourself.