The Muay Thai Guys Podcast – Episode 13


By Sean Fagan

Chances are you’ll run into a variety of sparring partners throughout your Muay Thai journey.

Some partners will be absolutely wonderful to work with because you’ll be able to sharpen your striking skills and not have to worry about being injured or knocked out. On the other hand, you’ll also run into a variety of sparring partners who will ENRAGE you to the point where your blood starts to boil and you have sick thoughts of knocking them unconscious… it happens!

In the most recent The Muay Thai Guys Podcast, Sean and Paul discuss 10 types of sparring partners that you will most likely run into if you are in the sport long enough. The original post the guys got this idea from comes from their friend Steven Kong of – you can check out the entire article here – here’s a brief rundown of what they discuss:

Click here or the podcast player at the top to listen to TMTG 013: 10 Types of Sparring Partners

Quick Review – 10 Types Of Muay Thai Sparring Partners

  1. The “Take It Easy” or “Please Go Soft” Guy – These partners are easy to work with because you’ve got nothing to worry about. The best way to work with these types of sparring partners is to focus on various techniques you normally wouldn’t try out in a more dangerous situation. You can also slow things down and really try to focus on improving your timing, accuracy and combinations.
  2. The “Tense As Hell” Guy – Chances are at some point YOU were this guy… chances are we ALL were! It’s easy to get super tense when you first start sparring because it’s something you are not used to doing. When dealing with these types of people, just be aware that they will most likely have NO control of their power or technique… so watch out
  3. sparring better than therapyThe Technical Sparring Guy – We all love working with this type of fighter because you can really focus on improving your technique and timing. If you find a good technical sparring partner your skills can constantly be refined without damaging your body or having to worry about getting injured.
  4. The Punches Followed By Low Kicks Guy – These sparring partners love their Dutch style of fighting: hand combinations followed by low kicks. It’s good to deal with these types of fighters on occasion because you can really perfect your low kick defense… but it can get very frustrating and painful if you’re not able to check or evade their low kick combos!
  5. The “Muay Thai Douchebag” Guy – We’ve all met this guy. He’s relatively new to the sport and has a HUGE ego that he needs to pump up by beating on the smaller, lesser experienced students in the gym. If you’re more advanced and can handle yourself sparring, this is a great time to put his ego in place and give him a lesson or two.
  6. The “This Is Not Muay Thai” Guy – You won’t always be dealing with the traditional Thai stylist when sparring, so getting used to other types of fighters (i.e. Taekwondo, MMA, Boxing etc.) will be crucial if you truly want to take your Muay Thai skills to the next level. This is especially important if you plan on fighting because you will most likely have to deal with a variety of styles while climbing the rankings!
  7. The “I’m Twice Your Size” Guy – This guy is either a roided out bodybuilder or a sky scraping giant that lurks over you during your sparring session. Both of these guys can be extremely dangerous to work with if you’re not careful, so make sure to be wary before moving around with someone who can eat you for breakfast.
  8. The Advanced Guy – These types of partners are basically an upgraded version of the Technical Sparring guys, except that they are another tier up because of how fluid they are with their techniques and movements. If you’re lucky enough to have advanced guys to spar with in your gym, take full advantage!
  9. The “I’m Going 100% Guy” – The name speaks for itself. This is the guy that feels the need to go all out and prove himself in the gym. There’s a few ways to deal with this type of sparring partner that we discuss in the podcast.
  10. The “Next Level” Guy – This guy is a top level pro that has so much fun sparring because he/she knows that they can’t be touched. Guys like Saenchai, Buakaw and Yodsanklai come to mind as well as westerners like Kevin Ross, Liam Harrison and others.

Click here or the podcast player at the top to listen to the entire episode where Paul and Sean go into even more detail on the variety of sparring partners you’re bound to see throughout your Muay Thai training.

The Muay Thai Guys come out with NEW episodes almost every week! Make sure you don’t miss one by subscribing via one of the options below:

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Have any questions or suggestions for topics? Contact Sean or comment below with your ideas and maybe your topic will be covered in the next episode!

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