Best BJJ Spats in 2020

5/5

Finding the right gear is crucial for any style of martial arts, but especially for Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Over the years I’ve gone through my fair share of No-Gi apparel, and have had a mixed bag of experiences. You can learn from my success and misfortunes, so keep reading to get the lowdown on the best BJJ Spats.

It’s Hard to Pick Just One

After you’ve been doing Brazilian Jiu Jitsu for a couple of months, you may, as many people do, become obsessed. One or two classes a week isn’t nearly enough anymore, and you start taking 5 or 6. Then you realize you don’t have enough clothing for Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, so you start buying more, spending just as much money, if not more on your grappling gear as you do on your regular clothes…

Once you get to the almost inevitable point of obsession with Jiu Jitsu, you will really want to have an idea of what’s worth spending your money on, as far as training gear goes. I think a pair of spats should last 6 months, at a minimum, with moderate ( 2 classes a week) use. The better brands and designs will last a year, 2 years if you are really lucky.

Everything from the stitching, to the type of waistband, and the way they fit can have a noticeable impact on durability and even performance. After some real trial and error I’ve decided on a few specific spats that I’d recommend, and some I wouldn’t. Keep reading to get the scoop on the best compression pants for BJJ.

Raven Fightwear BJJ Spats

Raven Fightwear is a brand that has been in the game of BJJ and fight rashguards and Jiu Jitsu spats for a few years now, with mixed results. They have some of the wildest and most artistic designs on the market, but the quality of their product still leaves something to be desired. If they can put the same effort into the stitching department that they put into their art department they would really have something special. You can always take them to a tailor and get the seams reinforced…I’ll wait until they have some notable improvements in their product line before I purchase their compression pants.

Pros

  • Really Artistic and Unique
  • Low Cost
  • High on the fashion scale

Cons

  • Poor Stitching
  • Too much focus on fashion and design
Elite MMA Spats

These baseline compression pants are a great purchase when starting your BJJ training. There are a variety of color options, and have a sturdy elastic waistband. The Elite MMA Spats are among the most affordable brands on the market, and are a great purchase for those looking for a good starter pair of spats that will get the job done.

Pros

  • Great Value/Low Cost
  • Nice Variety of Solid Colors
  • Good baseline model

Cons

  • Low Style Points
  • Some reviews complained of small fit
Anthem Athletics Helo X Spats

Anthem Athletics puts out decent quality in both rashguards and Jiu Jitsu spats , that have a nice price point. The stitching is decent, and the fit is nice. Some complaints have been that the waistline is not the best design, but I’ve never had any problems. The prints on these are a bit more fun; they have dual and tri-tone spats with decent patterns. Anthem Athletics is a decent company that produce moderately priced grappling gear. Not my first choice, but a good place to start. 

Pros

  • Good Value/Low Cost
  • Variety of Colors
  • Decent array of pattern styles
  • You can get camouflage print

Cons

  • Waistline complaints
  • Less durable material
  • You can get camo print
Sanabul Compression Base Layer Workout Jiu Jitsu Spats Tights

The basic BJJ spats from Sanabul were one of my first purchases of compression pants, and I still own a pair that I purchased over two years ago. They are one of the most affordable pairs of grappling spats on the market, and one of the most durable. They don’t offer much in the way of fashion, offering pretty much Black or Grey as your color coding options. What they lack in style they make up for in performance. I’ve personally put in 5 hours per week just in this pair of spats, and they are holding up just fine. Highly recommend.

Pros

  • Great Value/Low Cost
  • Low Profile
  • Durable material
  • Made by an established combat sports company

Cons

  • Light on Fashion Options and cool styles
Venum Gladiator BJJ Spats

Venum is known for making quality, middle of the road fight sports gear. They have been in the fight game for years, and all the Venum gear that I own is reliable and durable. Their BJJ spats fall under that same umbrella; they have great fabric, a good elastic waistband design, and antimicrobial material. Overall Venum’s BJJ Spats are a great buy for anyone starting out in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu or someone who’s been training for years. These are a good middle of the road compression pants for BJJ.

Pros

  • Durable construction, holds up to abuse
  • Well known company in the world of combat sports
  • Low profile designs
  • Good fit, good waistband design

Cons

  • A bit on the pricey side
Hypnotik Standard Bjj Spats

Hypnotik is a brand that is already known for their quality combat sports products, and their grappling spats are no different. These spats are IBJJF approved, and are available with designs in corresponding ranked colors. (White, Blue, Purple, Brown, Black). They also boast a durable anti microbial fabric and with superior stitching to make sure they last. Hypnotik is a brand of BJJ compression pants that you will see worn in many training academies.

Pros

  • A well known, quality brand
  • IBJJF approved, available in color coded ranking
  • Great Stitching
  • Anti-Microbial Fabric

Cons

  • Sizes run a little long in the legs
  • Not much in the way of fashionable designs
This is box title

These guys hit a nice balance between performance and style.
Honestly, who is brave enough to admit he does not like Street Fighter cartoons or movies?!
Fusion Fight Gear offers some really cool designs like Batman Comic pop art, Ryu from Street FIghter, Ninja Turtles, and the Joker are just a few of their sublimated graphics that they offer printed on antimicrobial fabric with flat lock stitching. I really like this company for the fun graphics that they are putting out, some which they offer in matching rashguards and spats. The main complaint that people levy against their brand is that their waistband design is sometimes a problem.

Pros

  • Great designs with cool, artistic concepts
  • Good Stitching
  • Women’s and Men’s styles

Cons

  • Waistband design needs some work
Fuji Sports Sakana Spats

Fuji is one of the originals in the world of submission grappling and Judo. Fuji makes high quality Gis, as well as No-Gi gear. I bought a Fuji rashguard shirt 6 years ago that is still in rotation today and holding up nicely. Fuji’s spats are cut from the same cloth, as they say, as their rashguards. Fuji holds itself to a high standard, and you should expect nothing short of perfection from them. They don’t put out as many variations in design as some of the other companies out there, but what they do put out is top notch. In the world of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Fuji is always at or near the top. I highly recommend almost almost all of Fuji’s combat gear, but they make some of the best compression pants for BJJ.

Pros

  • All around high quality
  • Superior stitching
  • Great designs and artwork
  • Tried and true company

Cons

  • Lack of variation in designs
Pressure Grappling Bjj Spats

Pressure Grappling is relatively new to the scene, but they have quickly become one of my favorite companies for BJJ gear. Their overall design is awesome, and there is some real attention to detail on the stitching and the waistband. Their artwork is cool and colorful, and they also offer some toned down and subtler prints.

Pressure Grappling is also one of the few Brazilian Jiu Jitsu companies that puts effort in to catering to the female grapplers specifically. Their Gi’s and Jiu Jitsu spats and rashguards are all offered in a women’s cut, which is sometimes rare in the world of combat sports gear. Finding good women’s bjj spats can be tough sometimes. Overall just a great company selling a great product, with excellent customer service to boot.

Pros

  • Great stitching and design
  • Awesome artwork and graphic sublimation
  • Nice waistband
  • Antimicrobial Fabric
  • Large selection of women’s and men’s styles

Cons

  • A bit on the pricy side relative to other brands
Hayabusa Compression Spats

Hayabusa is one of the elite companies in the combat sports world. They offer everything from boxing gloves, shin guards, headgear, BJJ Gis, as well as rashguards and spats. Hayabusa’s sizing chart is pretty spot on, and their compression pants fit nicely. Hayabusa is always in my personal top 5 brands of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu gear to buy. I own several of their rashguards and a hayabusa bjj gi, have never had any problems with either of them. Hayabusa offers a wide range of compression pants, but the Metaru Silver design is my personal favorite in men’s bjj compression pants. Pressure Grappling runs a close second to Hayabusa, but I give the number one spot to Hayabusa.

Pros

  • Great company with a history of quality
  • Good stitching and excellent antimicrobial fabric
  • Colorful and artistic design

Cons

  • Higher price in relation to other brands

No-Gi Armor

Traditional Brazilian Jiu Jitsu uniform is the Gi.(Read best bjj gi for a beginner if you’re looking for one.)
Compression pants and rash guards are the unofficial uniform for No-Gi classes.
Sure, you could wear just shorts and a T-shirt for class, but why would you?

Most of the people I train with, including yours truly, wear rash guard and spats under gi.
You get decent moisture control, avoid rashes and infections even under gi.

I never take a No-Gi class without wearing Jiu Jitsu spats.
And I almost never take a Gi class without wearing my spats and rash guards as well.

Hygiene (People Get Sweaty)

I get sweaty, my training partners get sweaty, the mats are sweaty. I personally like to have a little bit of fabric between myself and the group slip-n-slide that the BJJ mats can turn into sometimes. Just my personal preference, but I hate having to use my sweaty legs to hold someone else’s sweaty legs in my half-guard. A nice pair of compression pants can stop that. 

How many people have you seen wash their feet before they step on the mats?
Exactly!

The more fabric between you and the mats the better I say.

Protection

Sometimes people don’t follow the gym etiquette and have their fingernails a little longer than they should be.

Don’t be that person!

Spats and a rashguard will save you from getting scratched by a training partner’s claws, and getting some sort of mat funk rubbed all over you..

There’s also the rash protection factor; your training partners are trying to pass your guard, take you down, heel hook you, and more.

Friction burns are real.

If you want extra protection then get a pair of bjj knee pads as well.

Courtesy

Triangle chokes from the bottom are my bread and butter, but I always feel bad if I throw one one without my Jiu Jitsu spats, giving my partner a face full of sweaty man thigh. It just seems rude..

Style

Yes, I put it last on the list, but let’s not pretend that looking cool isn’t on the radar. Who doesn’t want to dress up like a superhero and fight people? There are all manner of BJJ compression pants for men and women available these days, as you’ll see below. As the popularity of sports like Mixed Martial Arts grow, more and more companies are trying their hand at producing grappling gear. 

What Makes a Good Pair of BJJ Compression Pants

Seems pretty simple; it’s just a pair of slip on pants. I’ve learned from experience that not all spats are created equal, and the details matter. Here are a few things to look for when searching for spats:

Fabric

You want to have a nice polyester blend of fabric that allows for fluid motion when grappling. Good Spats don’t feel static-y or very porous; they should feel relatively smooth and silky. You’ll want the fabric to keep your sweat in, and your training partner’s sweat out. Having anti-microbial fabric helps to some of the germs at bay. 

Stitching 

The quality of the stitching is the most important factor in the longevity of your spats, next to the type of fabric. Like most pants, spats are stitched on the inside. You’ll want to find a pair that is double stitched or has Flatlock stitching so they don’t come apart after a couple washes. Cheap BJJ Spats will sometimes come apart at the seams way before they should. 

Fit

Depending on your size, weight, and stature most Jiu Jitsu spats will fit accordingly with your normal clothing size. Many companies have a sizing chart available when you order, but some brands run smaller or larger in the length. You want your grappling spats to fit snugly, like a second skin, and not have them sagging or bunched up anywhere.

Waistband

The style and type of waistband is also very crucial to the durability of your spats. A good elastic waistband should keep its size and shape through multiple washes, and should keep your pants from sliding down in the middle of a high intensity roll. Save yourself the embarrassment, and find something with a decent waistband.

It’s Hard to Get Just One Pair

These 10 brands of grappling spats are not the only brands out there, but are my personal recommendations. Depending on where you are in your training and how often you get on the mats, I’d suggest having a pair for each day that you train.

At present I try to step on the mats 5 days a week minimum, and some days I go for the morning and evening classes. Wearing the same pair of spats twice in a day is inconceivable, unless you hate your training partners. It’s worth getting a couple extra pairs, in my opinion. Washing is what really degrades your spats, and washing your spats 5 days a week will wear them down quickly, no matter how high quality the brand.

I like to keep a couple pairs that I would use for competition or in-house tournaments, and then a few that are in my everyday rotation. Having five pairs means I only wash them once or maybe twice a week, hopefully extending the product life a little longer. I have yet to have a pair of spats come unstitched or come apart on me (fingers crossed). The only problem I’ve had is one small hole the size of a pencil tip in my Sanabul pants that I believe came from friction with the Velcro of the shorts of my training partners. 

How To Wear BJJ Spats

Basically, you can do whatever you want, no one can stop you! (Depending on how good you Jiu Jitsu is) I prefer to wear a pair of grappling shorts over most of my spats, but that is a personal preference. Some designs and graphics make it feel less like you are hanging out in your underwear than others, but it really is about how your spats fit and how comfortable you feel in them.

Finding the Right Fit

The best thing you an do is refer to the manufacturer’s sizing chart according to your height, weight, waist size, and inseam if they offer one. Depending on where the product is manufactured, and where the company is located, there could be some major size differences.

I recommend trying them on as soon in store, or as soon as you get them if you order online. Test them out at home prior to going to class, just to make sure there are no incidents. Do a couple deep squats and lunges to make sure they don’t bunch up or ride to low in the waist. Your spats shouldn’t really move at all if they fit right.

Do some spin moves, throw some kicks, and anything else you can think that might compromise your grappling garments. Maybe do a friction test to make sure you won’t have any drag on the mats and you aren’t going to hip escape right out of your pants.

Caring For Your Spats

As I said, washing is what will degrade your spats the most. Try to follow the manufacturer’s instructions listed on the tag, which usually says machine wash on cold and hang dry. One thing you really want to avoid is leaving your spats and rashguard in your gym bag for hours or even overnight. The combined sweat of you and all of your training partners will create the worst smell imaginable.

I always wash my grappling spats and rashguard in cold or warm water , and make sure to add scented fabric softener along with laundry detergent to counteract any potential stench buildup. In extreme cases I will add a 1/2 capful of bleach, but the best thing to do is to wash your workout gear as soon as possible, and stay fresh.

Always refrain from dying your Jiu Jitsu spats and rashguards. IF absolutely necessary, you can dry them on low or air dry settings, but do so at your own risk. The best practice is to wash daily if you can, and just let them dry overnight. Having a pile of sweaty training gear in a corner for a week waiting to get washed will not bode well for your household, trust me. 

This list is just my personal opinion of the best BJJ Spats that I’ve found so far. Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is a constantly changing and evolving sport and martial art, and the companies that are producing the training gear are evolving just as fast. The brands and products at the top of the list are tried and true staples of the grappling world, while the ones near the bottom are worth checking out as well.

The Pros and Cons listed are my opinions based on personal experiences and reviews, but I am constantly purchasing new gear. As the obsession with practicing my favorite martial art grows, my closet space shrinks.

What are your favorite training spats/compression pants? 

Good luck with your gear search, and don’t stop training!

 

 

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