What Are BJJ 'Spats' and Do You Even Need Them? BJJ Beginner Tips

What Are BJJ 'Spats' and Do You Even Need Them? BJJ Beginner Tips

Generally people understand that shorts and rashguards are requirements for no-gi jiu jitsu but not as many people are aware of spats...

In the following article, we break down what the heck BJJ spats actually are!

And then we discuss the reasons to wear BJJ spats during training.  Read on...

What are BJJ Spats?


Spats are pocket-less and skintight leggings designed to be worn under shorts or gi pants (or on their own if you're particularly brave) to give extra comfort and protection whilst training. 

BJJ spats are made from a combination of spandex and polyester, making them nice and stretchy. They are form-fitting and muscle tight!

BJJ spats can be worn in both gi and no-gi during training and competition.  

Why to Wear BJJ Spats

1) Comfort

Spats do feel good to wear, the material feels nice and snug as it hugs against your skin and a massive benefit to spats is that they great for eliminating chafing in the thighs - which no body enjoys!

And because Spats give you a layer between your skin and the surface that you're rolling on this protects you against irritations from abrasive or rough mats – aka “mat burn”!

Mat burn can be rough, especially on the knees but spats can certainly help.

Spats can also prevent hairs being pulled out of your legs which is nice... And even better, for those of you who prefer to be seen with shaven legs (speaking to the women mostly here...) if you've not had time, just cover it up with a pair of spats!

2) Privacy

Whether its a skin problem you've been combating for decades, an unfortunately shaped birthmark or whatever... Some people just feel more comfortable when they're covered up!

3) The Benefits of Compression

Compression training gear improves the blood flow through your body keeping the circulation at a healthy rate and even enabling muscles to be better replenished by new blood cells aiding in battling fatigue.

Keeping a healthy blood flow throughout the body combined with the fact that compression gear helps to keep muscles and joints in place as you roll also results in a reduced injury risk.

And spats help to keep the body warm during training which adds to the injury reduction as well!

Basically compression gear has been shown to reduce injury rate, improve recovery, and battle fatigue in athletes! Give it a try.

4) Protection

Skin protection! To be precise...

There are all sorts of nasty infections that you pick up on your skin from the tatami!

They range from mild to severe all the way up to life threatening!

Most academies will keep their mats clean but that doesn't stop these nasty little bacterial buggers from infecting our happy place...

Ringworm for example is an incredibly common concern for grapplers:

Ringworm can be treatable with pharmacy creams and is typically not life-threatening but it is still a pain to deal with and can require you to take time off from training (which suucks!).

Spats protect your skin from direct contact with the mats and reduces the likelihood of you picking it up!

More serious skin conditions: staph infections and in particular MRSA are conditions that we want to avoid at all costs... 

These are the suckers that'll kill you if you let 'em!

Staph comes in all shapes in sizes and can (and quite often does) just dormantly live on your skin, in your homes and all over the world with little effect but there are certain strands of it you definitely don't want to catch!

MRSA I think you will of heard of and we want to avoid that AT ALL COSTS!!

So spats are a great thing... They could potentially save your life!

And it's not just the physical barrier, it's preventing the cuts and abrasions that could later become infected with staff as well! 

5) Consideration for your training partner

Particularly in some positions it can be nice to have an extra barrier of fabric between you and your training partner...
At a certain point in BJJ you get used to sweating in each others eyeballs and it isn't a massive deal to most of us but for some people this extra level of protection separating the skin to skin contact could make all the difference!


Spats are good! They help in a number of ways, we strongly advise you find the right style for you and start protecting your legs on the mats!



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