How can I reuse or recycle karate belts?

karate-belt1We’ve had an email from Jacqui:

Any idea what to do with old karate belts? They are around 2m long, very strong and in all different colours. Thanks for any suggestions.

Using them as straps for homemade casual bags springs instantly to mind – but probably only because I was looking for something to serve that purpose last night.

Any other ideas?

(Photo by Sucker)

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21 Responses to “How can I reuse or recycle karate belts?”

  1. kelly says:

    you could use them to tie up tarps when you store them or possibly if the elastic straps on your sleeping bag are worn out, use them to tie around the bag when it’s rolled up (last time i used a sleeping bag was probably over 15 years ago, so maybe they make them different now :p) basically, you could tie them around anything you’ve rolled up to store.

    or to tie back curtains. chew toys for dogs maybe? (if they’re strong enough, though i suppose they would still eventually get shredded from doggie’s teeth)

  2. Trish says:

    My brother keeps his as momentos. I’ve told him that I’ll make them into a quilt when he has enough. If you’ve gone far enough through the karate program that might be an option.

  3. Sara says:

    They are the perfect width to weave together and make placemats. And easy to wash too!

  4. Jeremy says:

    I placed mine into a shawdow box for display, along side my Shodan Certificate..

    But if you’d like to see them put to good use, why not check local clubs..

    Many of them offer used uniforms either at reduced costs or free to those who can’t afford it. I’m sure they’d be interested to offer them to thier students.

  5. Nicole says:

    Sounds like they would be great for kids to play dress-up

  6. Elise says:

    I saw something today on where they had used old leather belts as the woven seat of a bench…you could use the karate belts in place of the leather. They are basically the same width, very strong and weave easily.
    good luck!

  7. Jacqui says:

    Thanks for all the ideas everyone. I love the idea of weaving them together to create something – will have to see if my sewing machine is up to the job!

  8. haydn carr says:

    re-use gift bags it saves money and also saves waist

  9. haydn carr says:

    i dont know y it says i asked how to re-use a karate belt cos i didnt type that!

  10. austin says:

    you can also make shoelaces out of karate belts by cutting along the line

  11. When we did Tae Kwon Do and Karate in school, we had a secondhand uniform programme for the benefit of students who couldn’t afford new uniforms. Belts were included in the programme, and students only have to pay a token sum for the uniforms. The white uniforms look passably new after a good washing and a soak in indigo solution.

  12. RSBenny says:

    I always passed mine down to a fellow student who was a lower grade than I.

  13. Esther says:

    I display my son’s on the wall, as a colorful border round his room, next to the ceiling.

  14. Brenda says:

    If you are a quilter – use it to frame a quilt…

  15. Darrell Polson says:

    They look great hanging in the doorway of a rec-room, i used them at our dojo to cover the open doorway to our storage area. I read all these comments because I’m looking for an old worn out black blelt, to replace mine which was stolen from our dojo. Unfortunately i lost the sentimental value of a belt i have trained in for over 20 years. Most retired karateka keep them for that reason. But if there is one floating around out there somewhere I would be very interested in purchasing it. Darrell ,, you can email me at

  16. Alain says:

    I need quite a few belts
    6 white – 6 yellow – 6 green – 6 brown – 6 black must be 2m or more
    will buy – used would be good

    • Bill says:

      Do you still want martial arts belts? I have bunches of them that I want to get rid of. Let me know if you are interested. Would love to find a good home for them.

    • Steve says:

      If you are still looking for used coloured belts, I have lots of different colours you can have free of charge, Once i reached black belt in training I will not need them anymore.

  17. Working together at Mount Evans one night each month and individually
    at home as circumstances allowed, Garrou and her dozen-plus friends and neighbors in the
    Memory Quilters group began the careful labor of assembling the diverse scraps
    and pieces of Fran’s cherished apparel into the story of a good woman’s life.

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