Flash back to about twenty five years ago. MMA fighting was hardly a mainstream concern, and the little attention it did garner was mostly of the hand wringing, culture of violence variety. Nevertheless, the early days of the Ultimate Fighting Championship threw up some memorable moments that would plant the seeds for the sport’s later surge in popularity. Moments like Dan ‘The Beast’ Severn’s pair of picture perfect suplexes against Anthony Macias, or Ken Shamrock’s arsenal of submission holds definitely captured the imagination of viewers. Yet no single figure loomed quite as large over the early days of Ultimate Fighting than that of Royce Gracie.
Despite weighing in at about 175 pounds, Gracie demonstrated the ability to consistently submit a string of seemingly overwhelming opponents. As the winner of three of the first four UFC tournaments, Gracie developed a near unbeatable reputation. You could say that, in terms of public recognition, Royce Gracie’s UFC victories were Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu’s coming out party.
Operating on the principle that opponents possessing a physical advantage in size and striking range can be defeated through superior technique, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is an adaptive form of traditional Japanese judo which emphasizes grappling, ground fighting, and submission holds. Its influence has been felt beyond the world of competitive combat sports. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is one of the most prevalent disciplines amongst amateur practitioners, thanks to the widespread applicability of its techniques.
Reflecting Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu’s popularity in small gyms and dojos everywhere, Jiu-Jitsu outfitters Albino and Preto have paired up with Bodega on a capsule collection encompassing both the traditional roots and contemporary style of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
A classic white Gi features unbleached fabric, references the martial arts garments used before the common availability of textile treatments, while an indigo version showcases the indigo garment dying technique that Japanese construction is renowned for. Both colors feature skirting taken from traditional Judo attire and an inside yolk pattern taken from a Yosegi puzzle box, as a nod to the puzzle A&P logo, as well as the puzzle of knowledge and technique to be solved when one undertakes the art of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
Casual pieces, shorts and graphic tees emphasize the notion of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu not just as a sport or a martial art, but as a comprehensive way of life.
The Bodega x Albino & Preto Gi's will retail at $225 per set, Rash Guard will be $62, No-Gi Shorts will be $80, with tees ranging from $33-$40. Releasing on July 28, 2017 at noon EST - first come, first served at SERIES by Bodega [184 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston, MA 02115].
Supporting Photography: Chris Shonting