My First Amateur Fight: Don't Do This!


By Angela Chang

In my last article on Muay Thai Guy, we talked about what you should do during your first fight. Frankly, there’s plenty of fight advice of what you should do during your first fight. You’ll hear it from teammates, friends, and may even read it online through self-research.

Your first fight can be daunting. There are several things you have to keep in mind through training and the fight and make sure you do. You can just as easily make mistakes that will cost you the fight. Here’s what not to do during your first fight.

DON’T: Worry About Using Perfect Technique

It’s extremely rare to see someone throw anything with flawless technique during their first several amateur fights. Your focus should be more on landing your shots rather than executing those shots perfectly. Waiting around for the perfect shot will only waste time you could be spending at least trying to score. Hitting is better than not hitting at all, even if the technique isn’t stellar.

DON’T: Memorize a Game Plan

In your first fight, there’s no need for a game plan against your opponent who sits on a similar experience level as you. Exactly as you don’t know what to expect from yourself, you won’t know what to expect from your opponent. Trying to memorize a game plan (“First round I’ll do this, then second round I’ll do this!”) will zap your mental energy. Put trust in your corners who are your eyes outside the ring. They’ll do the planning for you.

DON’T: Try to Knock Them Out

A lot of spectators will tell you to knock your opponent out. You may find yourself feeling like you have to do it in order to prove something. Resist that urge! Constantly looking for a KO that isn’t there is the fastest way to deplete your valuable strength. You’re already going to be tired with all the emotions you’re feeling and the adrenaline – no need to add to that.

DON’T: Be a Punching Bag

Some people freeze during fights, especially against an aggressive opponent. They think too much or lose confidence in themselves. Still, there’s no reason to just hand over the victory to them. If they want to win, they’re going to have to fight for it!

And the same goes for you – if your opponent is hitting you, don’t just stand in place taking punishment. Move your feet, hit them back. Slow their roll and mess up their momentum while trying to build up yours.

DON’T: Stray Too Far from Your Training

Some people get crazy ideas of wanting to do flashy jump kicks or knees during a fight because their favorite fighter does it. There’s a difference between you and your favorite fighters: they’re experienced professionals and you’re an amateur fighter who’s about to go into your first fight.

If you didn’t do it during training with your coaches, DO NOT DO IT DURING THE FIGHT!

Attempting to do something your body is not used to is going against the grain of your training. In fight camp, strikes and combos are purposely done over and over so your muscles and nervous system are used to doing them. If you attempt a tiger knee, it’s forcing your body to do something it’s not used to and you will only add to your fatigue. Moreover, you’ll probably really piss off your coaches, who are more than likely screaming in the corner at you.

Mistakes are easy to make, and it’s okay to make them! But always play it smart and do your best to not make the most costly ones.

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