Just curious: Is there a difference between rashguards and compression shirts?


Bravado Muay Thai Trainer
Oct 15, 2003
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What the title says. Is there a difference between a rashguard and a compression shirt? What is the difference if there is one? I'm just curious.
The material is is 90% polyester 10% spandex. I guess like underarmour. Is there a difference between something you would use for grappling vs a compression shirt?
ummm....I know that under armour does not hold up as long as your typical rash guard. They are not made for man on man rubbing. You can use something like under armour and get away with it. for bjj or grappling I would go with a rashy.
yea man i think that should be cool. Not very expensive so if it rips after a few months its easy to replace. I believe it will not fight off burns quite as well but you should be fine.
I've seen the guys at my gym who use rash guards, and though I've never felt the material it just looks to be a little thicker. They look just like the rash guards you'd wear under a wet suit to surf in. To my eye they appear to be the same, only a rash guard is thicker, has more of a neoprene material and less of a spandex/lycra material, and will likely hold up longer than just a thinner compression shirt. Check the materials on the tag of a rash vs. a compression though though, I know compression shirts list them and I'd imagine rash guards do too.
I've gotten nearly identical lifespans out of underarmour and 'actual rashguards,' regardless of if the rashie was sold with MMA/Jits or surfing in mind.

currently rocking: 2x unrderarmour short sleeved, a Nogi Long sleeve, and a Reef long sleeve.
Nogi rashie has held up to a year of rolling 3-5 times a week with only a single frayed spot, and some damage to the logo, couldn't say how the UA stuff will hold up long term, but they've taken a few months of rolling (plus use when I play rugby) with no visible wear.
I have a compression shirt from Target thats a spandex and elastane and a sprawl loose fit rash guard thats lycra/nylon. Out of the two, the sprawl is definitely constructed better for grappling and mma training. I already made a rip in the target shirt on my first day of training.
I guess I'll give them a try at that price.
I have a compression shirt from Target...I already made a rip in the target shirt on my first day of training.

I would say that's more due to the fact it's from Target than from it being compression. I haven't been doing this too long, but in using an Under Armour and a couple Nike compression shirts, they've held up pretty good. The compression shorts that I have from Target are the Champion C9 stuff they carry, and they tend to rank out pretty quickly so I don't have much faith in their construction when it comes to taking abuse. Just my $.02 though.
UnderArmor is thinner than most MMA-specific rash guards. However, the term rashguard is pretty much exactly what it sounds like. Something between your skin and the mat, so you don't get skin disease (Hurray for ring worm!!)

I've used a bunch of under armor/nike (UA style) shirts and they hold up pretty well. MMA specific rash guards are a bit thicker in material typically though. But you shouldn't have any problems using under armor for BJJ.
I have a whole bunch of Nike compression shirts, and so far they have held up well. Always check your local Ross/TJmaxx style store. I got them for 10 a piece. And they are a lot more comfortable than some generic wal mart ones.