Fight for your grip! Don’t let them set their grips in! Get your grips first! You all heard those sayings one time or another from your black belt. The grips are what dictate the fight. Would you agree? Think of all the time you were tugged and pulled because your opponent had an iron grip on you that you could not break. You remember those matches? Do you also remember how much they kicked your ass? Yeah… grips are everything in a fight.
Grips Athletics designed and created a new competition gi called the Secret Weapon 2.0 Kimono. It was made for competition, but I used it for everyday training. The gi really lives up to the brand name of “Grips.” If you grip the gi correctly, tightly in the center of your palm and your fingers neatly hooked on, you will have the best grips ever in your life! BUT! If you grip the gi incorrectly with a loose grip or hold on with no commitment, your finger will burn! I’m talking about rug burn on your fingers, knuckles, and everywhere on your hands!
So right about now, you’re thinking that this is thick, rough, and probably uncomfortable… Actually, it’s pretty damn soft and comfortable. The material is 100% pearl woven cotton with triple stitching and reinforced. Overall, the gi weighs roughly 3lbs, so it’s pretty light and is perfect for competitions! The exterior of the gi is woven with a rough and braille-like texture, punishing those who grip it! Ironically, the interior does not match the exterior and does not have efficient “grips.” The interior of the gi is woven smoothly to cause minimal or no gi burn to the user. Thanks to the extra lining material added to the shoulders, upper back, and crotch areas, overheating and trapped heat will not be a problem anymore. The lining provides extra cooling, flexibility, and stays dry. This is all part of their cooling circulation called Cool Max!
The pants are 100% single woven ripstop from top to bottom to prevent it from causing any tears to spread! The pants are pretty breezy. The length and fit is perfect. It’s not baggy or loose, but they feel a little awkward and uncomfortable, not too bad overall. The material feels like it’s going to rip but it is more flexible and durable then you would think. They layered the knee section with extra lining to give it some cushion and prevent any gi burn. That is something to keep in mind if your pants constantly burn your knees or legs. Elastic padded drawstrings are used to support around the waist. It hugs around your waist comfortably while not strangling it. You will forget that it was there!
Overall, this gi is one of the best I have ever worn, and I am really impressed with their Cool Max system. It is really amazing how fast the material dries to keep it very light and stays cool as you continue training. The rough braille-like texture from the gi will either give your opponent the best grip on you or a punishing burn on their fingers. The fit warps around your body perfectly, and there is no need to adjust the length because it is perfect where it is at! The best part… it doesn’t STRETCH! When it is wet!!!
Suggestion and Recommendation: This is a great gi! It fits perfectly, so buy your exact size and hang dry. DO NOT WASH IN HOT! ONLY COLD WASH! NO HEAT DRYER! Just trust me on that… It is great for tournament because the cooling circulation helps to dry the gi fast and to stay cool. Whether your opponent has a grip on you or not, your gi is going to burn them! Rating my experiences on a scale of 5, I’ll can confidently give this gi a 4.5 out of 5 but very close to a 5! I can’t give it a 5 because of the awkward feeling from the pants and it raise up a bit while training. But… I’m only a blue belt and if you don’t like my take on it… Give it a try yourself! Its only $189.00 at the Grip Athletics website!
Special thanks to Marat Shagirov for giving us his feedback in this video about the gi.