Don’t worry, for several reasons you will get it probably wrong the first time. And luckily – it does not matter. It will look stupid if your gi is too large but nobody will care.
I probably think about it way too much but gi sizing is so stupid.
My personal experience
I am 68-70 kg, 178 cm. When I look at size charts then most of the times I am between(!) 2 sizes. From my experience so far:
- Tatami Absolute Nova A2 is very baggy, pants are like a balloon but otherwise OK, comes with a free belt;
- Progress Academy A1L is too short, pants are super short (10 cm shorter than Scramble A1L) , even though their size chart says it should be OK, comes with a free belt (which was also too short for me). I would like Progress Academy gi to be the right size because it is very compact and otherwise nice gi and I see many high level athletes wearing it on social media;
- Ippon Gear Rookie A2 is OK – lightweight, compact, good fit despide being basically an unknown brand, comes with a free belt;
- Scramble Standard Issue A1L is and I like it very much but as it is 450 gsm then it is heavy, hard to pack and hard to wash.
Gi size system
A – adult
Number, for example A2 – a size bracket, different for every producer
C, for example A2C – adult, size bracket 2, curvy
L, for example A3L – adult, size bracket 3, long
For example A2 can mean adult sized 77-87 kg, 170-178 cm (for Tatami brand).
Every gi producer size is different
If you look at size charts of different producers then you find that for every producer the sizing is slightly different.
In addition to that gi cuts are also different. Some are baggy, some are slim fit.
Look at the size chart, please
Size charts allow tolerance which means their accuracy is around 2 cm.
It will shrink
If you wash your gi for the first time then it will probably slightly shrink. Gis usually have a natural shrinkage rate of about 3-6% after washing with warm water. This means that sleeves and trousers will become shorter.
It is advisable to wash your gi before the first use because otherwise it will leave rubble(?) on your partner (and your body).
Weight of the fabric
Weight of the fabric is usually show in gsm (grams per square meter). Lighter fabrics are usually around 350 gsm, thicker fabric is 550 gsm (Tatami Estilo).
If you like compact lightweight gi then look smaller gsm ( less than 400 gsm). If your gi is heavier than 400 gsm then it may be inconvenient to put it into washing machine.
IBJJF Uniform Guidelines require gi jacket heavier than 380 gsm (starting from 2024 Worlds). So below are some that are in line with IBJJF Uniform Guidelines: