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Jesi Boy
White Belt
White Belt

Joined: 24 Apr 2017
Posts: 15
Location: Western Australia
Styles: Goju-Kai

PostPosted: Sun Oct 08, 2017 9:21 pm    Post subject: Best Japanese Kumite Gi? Reply with quote

Hey Guys,

I am just doing some research on kumite gi's at the moment, not necessarily looking to buy one.

I currently have an Arawaza Onyx Evolution, which I absolutely love, but I realise it is slightly outdated and that there are better options.

The three that strike me as being the best at the moment are; the Arawaza Onyx Zero Gravity, the Arawaza Onyx Air and the Tokaido Kumite Master Pro Athletic (which has just come out).

These are all really good options, as they are all light, durable and comfortable (based on descriptions from people I know). Their only downside is that they are not Japanese made (even the Tokaido, as the gi is made in Pakistan or somewhere like that).

The Japanese kumite gi's that look promising at the moment are: the Shuriedo Waza, the Hirota Kuu, the Hirota Tsubasa and the Tokaido Onsoku. It is hard to find information on these gi's, as not many people wear them where I live, and it is hard to grasp what they are like through reading descriptions.

I just wanted to know if anyone has tried these gi's, and if you have, can you please describe what they are like and how the material feels and looks. It might even be helpful if you can attach an image of the material.

Also, if you have any other suggestions for a good kumite competition gi (Japanese made), please inform me!

Thanks!

-Jesi Boy
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JR 137
KF Sempai
KF Sempai

Joined: 10 May 2015
Posts: 2368
Location: In the dojo
Styles: Seido Juku

PostPosted: Mon Oct 09, 2017 8:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Are you buying it strictly for competition/tournaments, or are you looking for a gi that youíll train in as well? I know it sounds like a stupid question that shouldnít make a difference, but bear with me...

I had a long conversation with Shuriedoís USA distributor last year regarding traditional cotton gis vs blended ones. I wanted a gi that was as cool as possible, as my dojo gets pretty hot and humid in the summer, and we donít use air conditioning. I inquired about the Shuriedo New Wave line, as it seemed like it would be a good fit for those purposes. He told me the New Wave line is a great competition gi, but it doesnít hold up well to constant wear and washing. The fibers break down significantly faster than pure cotton. He likened it to a formal dress suit youíd only wear on special occasions. The New Wave lines were a few dollars to about $100 more than the traditional ones, so there wasnít any bait and switch going on.

I donít know the Waza line and didnít ask, but if itís a blend rather than pure cotton Iíd imagine it would be similar in this regard.

I wear a Shuriedo K-11 during kumite class at my dojo. Itís lighter weight than their heavier K-10, but just as good in terms of material and construction. Thereís been nights were we did an hour and a half of kumite drills and actual kumite total (with no air conditioning), and I had zero complaints about the gi being too heavy or hot. Completely drenched in sweat, but still comfortable (relatively speaking).

I donít know the other gis you mentioned. Maybe Iím a bit biased, and I havenít worn one, but I havenít heard much raving about the non-Japan made Tokaido gis. Theyíre a different material, made in different factories, and cut differently than the Japan made Tokaidos. If you can get a good fit, I wouldnít hesitate to get a Japan made Tokaido. People argue Shuriedo vs Tokaido a lot. Iíve worn a friendís Tokaido Ultimate and owner 2 different Shuriedos. Theyíre equal IMO. Shuriedo fits me better, so I wear that. If Tokaido fit me better, Iíd wear that instead.

I wish a store carried a bunch of gis in different sizes were I could go in and try on a bunch of them to see what I liked best. Until that day comes, weíre all stuck ordering unseen and returning what we donít like.

I hear Kamikaze makes excellent gis too. A dojo mate wears a Kamikaze America gi. Looks well made and comfortable. Itís held up well too. A little heavy for my tastes, so Iíd go Europa if I was taking the Kamikaze plunge.

Just some opinions. Sorry if I rambled.
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Shizentai
Green Belt
Green Belt

Joined: 01 Mar 2009
Posts: 417

Styles: karate

PostPosted: Mon Oct 09, 2017 9:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The single best fitting and best looking gi I've ever had was a Hirota. I got the blended fabric and custom fit though, so I can't advise on a standard cut. Mine held up fine training in heat for a few years.... but I kind of lost it in a flood, so I can't speak on how long they last. If you go to their HQ in Fukuoka, they measure you up and cut it on the spot. It was AWESOME!
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wayneshin
Orange Belt
Orange Belt

Joined: 21 Feb 2011
Posts: 149


PostPosted: Mon Oct 09, 2017 3:34 pm    Post subject: Re: Best Japanese Kumite Gi? Reply with quote

Jesi Boy wrote:
Hey Guys,

I am just doing some research on kumite gi's at the moment, not necessarily looking to buy one.

I currently have an Arawaza Onyx Evolution, which I absolutely love, but I realise it is slightly outdated and that there are better options.

The three that strike me as being the best at the moment are; the Arawaza Onyx Zero Gravity, the Arawaza Onyx Air and the Tokaido Kumite Master Pro Athletic (which has just come out).

These are all really good options, as they are all light, durable and comfortable (based on descriptions from people I know). Their only downside is that they are not Japanese made (even the Tokaido, as the gi is made in Pakistan or somewhere like that).

The Japanese kumite gi's that look promising at the moment are: the Shuriedo Waza, the Hirota Kuu, the Hirota Tsubasa and the Tokaido Onsoku. It is hard to find information on these gi's, as not many people wear them where I live, and it is hard to grasp what they are like through reading descriptions.

I just wanted to know if anyone has tried these gi's, and if you have, can you please describe what they are like and how the material feels and looks. It might even be helpful if you can attach an image of the material.

Also, if you have any other suggestions for a good kumite competition gi (Japanese made), please inform me!

Thanks!

-Jesi Boy


I have all of the Arawza gis you mentioned. The Onyx Evloution is 7oz which the Air is 6 and the Zero Gravity is 5. It depends on what you want them for. I probably wear the Evolution the most. The Air and the Zero Gravity are paper thin compared to the Evolution. I wasn't a huge fan of the Air but the Zero Gravity is great. It has that similar smooth fabric feel on the surface that the Evolution has. My son who competes has worn the Zero Gravity almost exclusively in competition since he got it this time last year.
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singularity6
Pre-Black Belt
Pre-Black Belt

Joined: 26 Jun 2017
Posts: 958
Location: Michigan
Styles: Jidokwan Taekwondo and Hapkido, Yoshokai Aikido, ZNIR Iaido, Kendo

PostPosted: Mon Oct 09, 2017 5:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Man, I wish I had the money to drop on a Japanese-made gi. I'm currently using Meijin's Tropical and their Champion gis. Both are great, but I think I like the Tropical best (lighter weight, great fabric!)

If I had the money, I'd probably invest in a Seishin gi... They're made in Sweden, which isn't Japan, but still... Sweden!
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neoravencroft
Orange Belt
Orange Belt

Joined: 02 May 2015
Posts: 122
Location: Grand Rapids, MI
Styles: Wing Chun, JKD, Uechi-Ryu, Escrima, Muay Thai

PostPosted: Mon Oct 09, 2017 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

When I was still taking karate, I was just using a gi from Bold Look. It was cheaply made, but it was thick enough for my liking.
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David the Gnome
White Belt
White Belt

Joined: 07 Mar 2010
Posts: 12

Styles: Uechi-Ryu, Wado-Ryu

PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 1:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

singularity6 wrote:
Man, I wish I had the money to drop on a Japanese-made gi. I'm currently using Meijin's Tropical and their Champion gis. Both are great, but I think I like the Tropical best (lighter weight, great fabric!)

If I had the money, I'd probably invest in a Seishin gi... They're made in Sweden, which isn't Japan, but still... Sweden!

Just wanted to make a quick correction on this. Seishin gi's are made in Pakistan, not Sweden. They are not very forthright with this information. It's not anywhere on their website that I can find beyond saying that they are not made in Okinawa on their FAQ page. They conceal this fact one step further by writing on the jacket of the gi "Made in Pakistan" in Japanese. It certainly looks like they are trying to imply to western customers that these gi's are made in Japan/Okinawa when they are not. I will try to get a picture tonight if I can remember to do so.

I just bought one of these gi's, I will post a quick initial thoughts and a review later. I intend to wear it to class tonight and see how it goes.
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Bulltahr
Brown Belt
Brown Belt

Joined: 08 Mar 2015
Posts: 614
Location: NEW ZEALAND
Styles: Shotokan, Seido Juku

PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 2:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

David the Gnome wrote:
singularity6 wrote:
Man, I wish I had the money to drop on a Japanese-made gi. I'm currently using Meijin's Tropical and their Champion gis. Both are great, but I think I like the Tropical best (lighter weight, great fabric!)

If I had the money, I'd probably invest in a Seishin gi... They're made in Sweden, which isn't Japan, but still... Sweden!

Just wanted to make a quick correction on this. Seishin gi's are made in Pakistan, not Sweden. They are not very forthright with this information. It's not anywhere on their website that I can find beyond saying that they are not made in Okinawa on their FAQ page. They conceal this fact one step further by writing on the jacket of the gi "Made in Pakistan" in Japanese. It certainly looks like they are trying to imply to western customers that these gi's are made in Japan/Okinawa when they are not. I will try to get a picture tonight if I can remember to do so.

I just bought one of these gi's, I will post a quick initial thoughts and a review later. I intend to wear it to class tonight and see how it goes.


Looking forward to your review. I bought a Ronin gi almost 1 year ago, it also is made in Pakistan. I have found the workmanship and material to be excellent quality. I guess that I don't care that a Gi is not made in Japan, as long as it is well made and with quality materials. "The proof is on the floor" to quote Sensei8, if the gi is comfortable and works for you then surely it doesn't matter where it's made.
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David the Gnome
White Belt
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Joined: 07 Mar 2010
Posts: 12

Styles: Uechi-Ryu, Wado-Ryu

PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 2:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bulltahr wrote:
David the Gnome wrote:
singularity6 wrote:
Man, I wish I had the money to drop on a Japanese-made gi. I'm currently using Meijin's Tropical and their Champion gis. Both are great, but I think I like the Tropical best (lighter weight, great fabric!)

If I had the money, I'd probably invest in a Seishin gi... They're made in Sweden, which isn't Japan, but still... Sweden!

Just wanted to make a quick correction on this. Seishin gi's are made in Pakistan, not Sweden. They are not very forthright with this information. It's not anywhere on their website that I can find beyond saying that they are not made in Okinawa on their FAQ page. They conceal this fact one step further by writing on the jacket of the gi "Made in Pakistan" in Japanese. It certainly looks like they are trying to imply to western customers that these gi's are made in Japan/Okinawa when they are not. I will try to get a picture tonight if I can remember to do so.

I just bought one of these gi's, I will post a quick initial thoughts and a review later. I intend to wear it to class tonight and see how it goes.


Looking forward to your review. I bought a Ronin gi almost 1 year ago, it also is made in Pakistan. I have found the workmanship and material to be excellent quality. I guess that I don't care that a Gi is not made in Japan, as long as it is well made and with quality materials. "The proof is on the floor" to quote Sensei8, if the gi is comfortable and works for you then surely it doesn't matter where it's made.

I totally agree, I don't care where the gi is made as long as it is a quality product, and I will reserve final judgement until I have had a chance to try the gi out. What I do have reservations about is how open they have been regarding where their gi is made, especially given the $269.99 price.
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mushybees
Orange Belt
Orange Belt

Joined: 16 Nov 2014
Posts: 198
Location: UK
Styles: Wado ryu

PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2017 1:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I also own the Seishin so I'll share my opinion of it.

It's a nice, sharp looking gi but nothing remarkable. The material is nice enough but if you care more about effectiveness than making loud sounds with your strikes it's not really one for the plus column.

I generally wear 14oz gis and with its thinner material and vented gussets I was expecting to feel much cooler in the Seishin but I don't find that to be the case.

It's nothing special in terms of finish in the stitching either.
I didn't know it was made in pakistan. I didn't expect it to be made in Okinawa either but it makes sense why it looks just like any other middle of the market dogi.
The seishin isnt a bad gi but I do have buyers remorse. It's an obvious high profit margin item with a reputation I suspect is built on an initial run of gi which were a much higher quality. It needs to be about £100-110 to be good value.


I own a Hirota from Japan with custom length sleeves and legs which was £80 less than the Seishin and it is far and away the better karategi.
I'd recommend a hirota in a heart beat.
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