Recently there has been talk of getting Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in the Olympics, sadly though this reality doesn’t look as though it will be for some time, considering the IOC ( International Olympic Committee ) has dropped Wrestling as an Olympic sport for the summer games. While many people would love to see BJJ as an Olympic sport we may never see this happen, although there have been petitions being signed from all over the world, the jury is still out.
Being inspired and a company as a whole ,Ronin Brand has stepped outside of the box in terms of design and research and have come out with their latest Kimono, the Rio Games 2016 model. Their R & D have carefully put together a BJJ Kimono worthy of possibly being introduced as an official uniform for the Rio Games in 2016 had they decided to add BJJ to their list of competitions.
Although Ronin Brand haven’t officially announced a release date for the Rio Games 2016 Kimono, they did send us a prototype, and officially will be 90% the same as the one we were sent, and despite having the word JANEIRO misspelled, we were assured the official batch , which will be limited to only 1000 units , never to be made ever again, will have any and all errors fixed before final production.
As of this review Ronin Brand had issued a statement that their first batch of the Rio Games 2016 Gi had the word “Janeiro” misspelled and were selling them at a $35 USD discount. The second batch has the correct word and will be offered at full price .
We asked for a size A2L and right out of the box the Kimono is a flashy one, with embroidery that rivals any high level BJJ Kimono, The Rio Games 2016 Gi is incredibly detailed and a stitched to perfection gi . Despite this gi being a prototype, the stitching and embroidery is of a high quality craftsmanship.
Made of 100% cotton the gi top is a 450 GSM Pearl Weave, pre shrunk featuring a EVA foam in the collar, Ronin Brand in previous gi’s had thick collars , they chose a thinner collar for the Rio Games 2016 gi assuming for mobility , since thicker collars tend to not have as much wiggle room as thinner ones do.
As we address the embroidery of the gi we would first like to add that the design is a notably high quality stitching, and after several training sessions and washing and hang drying, all threads have remained intact which leads me to believe the gi was designed to be abused. The feeling of not wanting to train in the Rio Games 2016 due to it being too nice has withered away. Ronin Brand has stated that final production will include gray contrast stitching, not seen in the photos due to this one being a prototype.
One thing we did notice on the multi colored triangles are the embroidery on the light threads do not cover the dark threads, if you look in the photo gallery you can see this , but we are guessing it has nothing to do with craftsmanship as much as it has to do with the light threads not being able to cover the dark. Cosmetically speaking it was not noticed until someone from the academy pointed this out.
The gi comes with reinforced armpits, reinforced skirt slits ( also with gray accents ) and is a one piece design. The logos we thought were tastefully placed throughout the kimono, and we honestly felt this gi would have made a great official uniform had BJJ been introduced to the 2016 Rio Games.
Ronin Brand in the past had gone with seam tape on the inside of the gi and cuffs, but opted to go without fancy lines, glad they did, it may have been over the top and for comforts sake, the cotton seam tape going along the cuffs and kimono were perfect.
Shrinkage was noticed after washing and hang drying in the sleeves and armpits, but once the sweat started and BJJ was in full swing , the gi felt a bit looser and closer to the fit when brand new. An issue that we reported back to Ronin Brand for further analysis.
Made of cotton canvas the pants are thick and durable, they have a 4 loop belt system with a bungee draw string , as an opinion, i think it would have served the pants better had the string been a flat drawstring type, but overall it held up fine. Gusset reinforcements keep the pant legs together and the gray contrast trim on the belt loops make for a clean look.
The one thing we noticed and loved ( despite the scratchiness, ok maybe we have sensitive skin ) was the pant cuffs aren’t double nor triple, not even quadruple stitched but sextupled stitched for incredible strength and durability. Not exactly sure why Ronin Brand would want to have the cuffs reinforced this way, but my guess is to have the pants as strong as possible at the weakest points to minimize ripping or tearing.
On the flip side the stitching on the bottom of the cuffs do scratch but this was all but forgotten once the ringer buzzed. The pant legs are reinforced from the top of the knee right down to the middle of the shin so starting on your knees at every training session shouldn’t be a problem. Right out of the bag the pants fit incredible, now an A2L keep in mind is the longer version of an A2, so contact Ronin Brand with your dimensions before ordering to reduce the amount of return time.
Roning Brand’s Rio Games 2016 campaign has brought out the creativity of the guys at the R & D department, with a keen eye for artistic value and innovative ideas Ronin Brand’s newest BJJ gi The Rio Games 2016 packs a mean punch in terms of style, creativity and most of all comfort. Had the announcement been made that Rio De Janeiro would be hosting the first ever Brazilian Jiu Jitsu games in 2016, we may have found this uniform to be template for others to follow suit.
But since the committee who is responsible for adding or subtracting games has decided to remove one grappling event, our hope that our beloved sport dies every day time passes without an announcement made.
That being said The Ronin Brand Rio Games 2016 gets a solid, solid 4.5 out of 5 stars ( those who do not like bling may give it a lower rating , we understand this, which is why it is OUR review and OUR opinion. )
A perfect gi , with a perfect rating of 5 stars would have to be tailor made to our exact dimensions, and since this gi and every other gi made is made of templates on average sizes, 4.5 stars is about as close to perfect a gi can come to.
The best feature of the Rio Games 2016 gi would have to be the fit and cut hands down. A BJJ gi has to have form and function to have high marks and since Ronin Brand have been in the business for a very long time this would come as no surprise. Doug, CEO of Ronin Brand is an encyclopedia of Kimonos and very helpful and patient, so do not hesitate to contact Ronin Brand with any questions as they have been nothing but accommodating during this review .
-Low Shrinkage risk
-Pants should be ripstop , cotton canvas may be too thick in certain climates
-Sextupled stitching is scratchy
-Drawstring is bungee , flat may have been a better match
To learn more about the Rio Games 2016 BJJ Kimono visit www.kinjisan.com