Sparring Gear Basics You Need
You may be familiar with sparring, especially from movies and television shows.  Sparring is a form of training that is common for many types of martial arts.  It is commonly identified as a relatively free-form fighting, with enough customs, rules, and understandings to make injuries unlikely to take place.

Taking part in any sparring activity is certainly exciting.  Unlike competitive fighting, the goal of sparring is usually the education and further training of the participants and not to determine a winner. It's no wonder that sparring partners often learn more about defense with sparring than about techniques for winning per se.  This is perhaps one of the reasons that sparring is done with participants fully "geared up."  The ones who are allowed to take part in sparring are those that are fully prepared with the right sparring gear.

The full range of sparring gear is required for every participant who wants to try out sparring.  The pieces of gear are required for everyone's safety.  However, there are certain exemptions for experienced adults and senior black belts.  These people are often allowed to spar even without full sparring gear, usually omitting head gear.

Here is what full sparring gear includes:

* Headgear
* Groin cup for men
* Foot protector or shin protector (optional)
* Fist protector or forearm guard (optional)
* Hogu or chest protector
* Mouthpiece

As previously mentioned, all of these gear items are required to reduce the chances of an injury occurring.

If you are planning to participate in sparring and are currently looking for sparring gear, you should be pleased to find that sparring gear is easy to find, with lots of stores online and offline offering this equipment.

However, it is important to mention that there are a number of styles of sparring in the martial arts, so the equipment required might vary, depending on which particular art form you are involved with. But it is essential for every sparring martial artist to use protective padding.  So, when searching for sparring gear, make sure to check with your instructor about his or her recommendations.  There are some sparring schools that sell sparring kits, complete with carrying bag.  So check with your colleagues first because they can also help you determine the right sizes and the proper fit.

Also consider your training needs when planning to purchase some sparring gear.  Note that leather sparring shoes are durable, and many sparring enthusiasts find them comfortable.  But some people find that they tend to slip more than foam-dipped foot pads.

Furthermore, weigh the cost of the gear as well as its value before you decide on what to buy.  Many experts recommend cloth gear as it is less expensive and offers a more secure fit than the foam-dipped sparring gear.  However, cloth gear normally offers less protection against impact.  But, for many, it is still a good choice.

Finally, when shopping for a mouth guard, choose one that protects but allows adequate airflow.  And, when it comes to head gear, pick one with a face cage or guard to reduce chances of a serious injury.  And remember, sparring is both fun and educational, but try to remain conscious of safety at all times.  Good luck!