What are the Differences Between Gi & No-Gi Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu?

“Gi” and “No-Gi” are terms used to describe forms of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. “Gi Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu” is grappling with the use of a traditional Gi (aka “Kimono”), which allows you to grab the clothing of your opponent. “No-Gi Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu” is grappling without the traditional uniform. Instead of the Gi, you wear shorts and a rash guard. Additionally, in No-Gi, you cannot grab your opponent’s clothing.

Here are the main differences:


In Gi, you will wear a BJJ Gi. In No Gi, you wear shorts and a T-shirt or rash guard.


The Gi provides numerous opportunities for establishing grips on both the jacket and pants. The most common jacket grip is the collar/sleeve grip. The grips allow you to have great control  of your opponent and to submit your opponent using their or your own Gi. The Gi allows a much smaller opponent to control a bigger one. In No-Gi, you have more wrestling-based grips, such as the neck. It is harder to control an opponent and an opponent is more likely to slip or power out of controls.


No-Gi is faster paced. The Gi slows things down as a result of the natural friction of the garment and the advanced control from the grips.

While and Gi and No-Gi are very similar, the way both styles evolve are very different. In Gi, the numerous grips and Gi material mean that alot of set ups are based on using the Gi matrerial for ex: lapel or worm guard (which is impossible in No Gi). In No -Gi, you will likely focus more on clinching and establishing wrestling-based grips. You will find No Gi players using more chokes and foot locks.