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The Isami Kimono gi is pretty pricey, but by all accounts, you get what you pay for.
Unlike most gis that are made is Brazil, Pakistan, Egypt, or wherever, the Isami’s are the pinnacle of Japanese gis. Isami kimonos are shipped directly from Japan.
It’s got a good amount of mobility and feels different than most other gis you’ve probably worn.
All of the gis have a cool taping on the inside as well. And very unique patches. Most of the time the Isami kimono is sent to you without the patches attached, but that may have changed recently.
There are a few really good guides to sizing for Japanese gis out there, including through the links below, so make sure to check them out before you purchase an Isami Kimono.
By most accounts, the gi is a bit of a wider cut compared to most gis of the same cut. But, the benefit is, of course, that movement isn’t restricted.
One of the strangest thing is the single loop for the pants.
The pants will hold up for quite a while. As will the jacket. This may be due to using a heavier fabric, but also because I was it inside out.
Definitely one of the coolest Japanese gis available in the US. Be careful if you’re looking to get it shipped to Europe. We’ve heard a few horror stories about shipping costs.
My newest gi is a Isami Jiu Jitsu Kimono. Available at Budovideos, $184, or at Chokesports, $150 plus a lot of shipping. I got the blue gi.
First of all, I have a lot of gis. This has become one of if not my favorite gi. The first thing I noticed is the softness.
PANTS: The pants feel like they are sweatpants. They feel very durable, but also very soft and pliable. I got the 5L, which say for 5’11”. Im 5′ 9″ and they fit real nice. I wear A2 normally. There is no kneepad per say. I like what they have done better. The extra fabric starts above the knees, and goes all the way to the cuff. The fabric covers the whole front half of the leg, and aside from the 2 outside sets of stitching, there are 3 lines down the middle, about 2 inches apart. The cuff is another nice thing. Instead of 1 set of stitching, there are 4 lines of stitching. I cant imagine this ever tearing. There is one belt loop centered in the front. Nice patches on each leg. Not gawdy but tasteful. Pics with Lucky gi, because that seems to be the benchmark. There is really no comparison, IMO.
The TOP: Size 5, fits like A2, maybe slightly larger. This top is very soft andpliable like the pants. It doesnt feel like a gi. Patches on each shoulder, one on left chest, and one on the bottom of the back. Very nice patches. The collar is not super thick, but there is extra material sewn from the edge on the lapel, outward, and up through the shoulders. The V at the bottom of the skirt has extra material. Even under the armpits, which is probably a weakpoint has an extra reinforcement. Inside the gi, along the stitching is extra reinforcement in the form of a long printed patch.
Hope this helps someone.
Isami is a pretty cool brand that hails from Japan. Most people have ordered from Chokesports.com in order to get their goods in the past, but now a lot of different sites carry them. They were one of the flashies gis we had ever seen when we first discovered them a few years ago, but now there are a lot of very ‘bling’ gis on the market. They still make an excellent double weave gi that is as strong as a double weave, but without sacrificing weight and stiffness. They are exceptionally high quality kimonos, but cut a bit different due to their japanese style.
One of the best features is that they allow you to order pants separate from the jacket. If you buy from Chokesports, you can expect some excellent customer service.
From every Isami gi that I have ever seen, the taping and patches are fantastic.
Get more details, including purchasing, at the Isami Kimono website.
Brendan is the Founder of Gireviews.net. By day he is a elementary school teacher, by night, a jedi gi reviewer!