• Sensei Stacy Pursell Jr.

Why Do We Wear A Gi And Why Is It White?


It’s Simple, Humble and Pure.

The word Gi means dress, clothes or uniform in Japanese. In the english

language we use the word Gi but in Japan it’s called Keikogi. It consists

of Uwasi (jacket), Zubon (pants) and Obi (belt).

It’s said that Funakoshi trained wearing a t-shirt and shorts. This was

normal training attire. In 1922 Funakoshi traveled to Japan to perform a

Karate demonstration at a popular Judo school. His friend was shocked

that he was going to wear a t-shirt and shorts. He gave him a Judo Gi to

wear to make him look more professional. Funakoshi ended up taking

the Gi back to Okinawa and the wearing of the Gi spread all over the

Island and to Japan. To this day the Gi is worn in Traditional Karate.

There are many reasons why we wear a Gi to train. Here are a few.

1. Wearing a Gi Retains the Integrity and Tradition of the Art.

2. It is made to meet the demands of training.

3. The Gi is something of value and shows commitment to the Art.

4. In the dojo the Gi makes us all the same. Who you are outside the dojo

stays there. In here it’s not about money or success in the world. We

are here to train not flaunt.

5. When you put on your Gi you know it’s time to train. It’s different then

anything you wear elsewhere. You dress the part now it’s time to start.

6. It’s more then a uniform. It’s a symbol that means I do Karate. Take

care of this garment. It represents you as a Karateka. It demands

respect. Wash and fold it like it means something. Because it does.

Simple, Humble and Pure

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