How to soften jiu jitsu belt?

In case you don’t train jiu jitsu, don’t be wondered to hear if someone is asking how to soften jiu jitsu belt. BJJ has quite a lot of differences compared to other martial arts. In fact, as any martial art does.

The differences can be found not only in the fighting style and techniques. But also in the gear – jiu jitsu gi and gi belt.

We have already talked a lot here about the jiu jitsu uniform – the gi – and its different specifics.

You may check them to find useful Information for your everyday jiu jitsu lifestyle.

But now it’s time to pay more attention to the jiu jitsu gi belt – the representative gear part of the BJJ practitioner’s skills.

Today we are going to speak about how to make BJJ belt soft.

While the belts in most martial arts are relatively soft by default (except the black belts), in BJJ mostly all belts are stiff. Sometimes even kids BJJ belts are quite too thick which for kids, especially 4-12 years old, are unnecessarily too large and stiff.

How to soften jiu jitsu belt

Of course, it depends on the belt manufacturer. Each jiu jitsu brand represents its own vision of what the best BJJ belt should look like.

You may meet difficulties when trying to find a belt brand that meets your requirements. Because very often BJJ athletes have their own expectations from the belt:

  • belt color more bright or dark
  • stiff BJJ belt or middle soft
  • more wide or standard
  • etc.

But these requirements can have an experienced jiu jitsu practitioner, who already knows, how should or could a BJJ belt be.

The new white belt beginner instead, often may not even have a clue about the requirements for the Brazilian jiu jitsu gi belt.

Stiff BJJ belt

New martial arts belts are always stiffer than after you use them for some while. But there are stiff BJJ belts that stay unyielding to get softened with time.

To understand is, that a stiff BJJ belt is not bad or good. It’s just a kind of gi belt.

Some BJJ fighters even struggle to find a stiff gi belt that will not soften after training or washing. They just like how they look on them and on the gi when tied.

Other jiu jitsu athletes find these belts not comfortable, as they may untie more often because of their thickness. Sometimes you can’t even tie it very tight to let it stay in place.

So in this case, a thick stiff BJJ belt rather meets your expectations and is the belt you wanted, or you have gotten one more task in your life. And the task is:

How do I make my BJJ belt softer?

How to soften jiu jitsu belt?

First of all, don’t overstate the problem. We have made this guide on how to soften jiu jitsu belt to help find solutions for jiu jitsu questions like this one.

#1 Method – Training

Regular training is the method that will work in most cases. Just visit your jiu jitsu gi classes wearing your stiff belt and it will become softened.

But if you feel your belt doesn’t get softened or you want to soften your brand new martial belt before the training, continue to read the below methods on how to soften jiu jitsu belt.

#2 Method – Twisting with partner

Ask your friend to help you. Each of you holds a belt end and twists it. The twisting should be done in one direction: if you are twisting to the right, your friend should twist also to the right.

Continue to twist until the belt will be maximally twisted along the entire length.

Next, you and your partner stretch the belt pulling it out like playing tug of war.

Then unwind the belt and twist it in the opposite direction repeating the procedure.

#3 Method – Twisting with no partner

You can do the previous method by yourself. The main goal here is to twist the belt to the maximum.

  1. Fold the belt twice. Step with your foot inside the loop (in the middle of the belt). Holding both belt ends in your hands twist the belt to the maximum. Next, pull the belt standing firmly on the belt. Unwind and repeat to another side.
how to soften jiu jitsu belt
One of the methods how to soften jiu jitsu belt

2. Loop the belt around a strong standing tree, pole, etc. Hold both belt ends in your hands and repeat the steps from the previous method with your foot.

#4 Method – Sharp edges

Find something with sharp corners (not a knife of course) around which you can loop your belt. It can be a chair or pole with right angles. Holding each belt end in your hands, pull the belt from side to side.

Turn the side of the belt and repeat.

Watch this tutorial in the video below.

#5 Method – Washing

If you are not from the “Don’t Wash Your Martial Art Belt Club” you can wash the belt. It may help. No need to add detergent.

But I personally wouldn’t put this recommendation in the first place.

First of all, because your belt may shrink and get shorter. So, if you want to use this method, wash in cold water.

#6 Method – Exchange

If you feel you can’t get victory in this belt-softening battle, you can find a gym mate, who is ready to exchange his usual soft belt for a stiff one.


As you probably already guessed, this guide will fit also how to soften a martial arts belt in any discipline. As all real martial arts belts are tailored on the same principles.

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