On the internet I read a lot of stories that encourage to prepare for a no gi contest by training with the gi/kimono. Isn't it a little bit of nonsense, because during no gi grip (holding the pants or shirt) isn't allowed. Can someone explain in details. I think I once read an article of GSP about this subject, but can't find it anymore.
I find that my no-gi fighting has become an order of magnitude better due to wearing a gi. You will find a few benefits:
- It slows down your game considerably, which means that you can't just rely on raw speed and athleticism to get your moves off.
- Your grip strength will increase dramatically which will make your arm drags more effective as well as let you keep your grips when you do spider guard, De La Riva, etc., especially when you are sweating.
- A gi lets your opponent take advantage of mistakes better and will make such mistake obvious. This will improve your no-gi game as you will need to react faster and plan better.
- You need to think more about what is being thrown at you in gi. While you may have 10 moves in no-gi, you may have 30, 50 or more to think about in gi (just an example). It really makes it physical chess at that point, which simplifies no-gi fighting for you.
- seeing all the gi techniques in action let you figure out the underlying principles better. You are no longer doing rote techniques, but learning the underlying concepts. This makes you an much more adaptable fight.
Hope that helps.