5 No BS Tips To Condition Shins For Muay Thai


By Sean Fagan

Well, maybe not in the moment when you're slamming your shin into your opponent's thigh (or worse yet, something bonier than that). That's always gonna hurt.

But somewhere early on in the development of Muay Boran and eventually of Muay Thai, clever practitioners learned that by conditioning their shins, they could turn the crippling sharpness into more of a deadened, dull pain that one can endure throughout the fight without giving up.

They also learned that conditioned shins heal much more quickly post-fight than unconditioned ones. Think about it this way: if you walk a mile every day, you'll not run out of conditioning if, one day, you're forced to walk two miles - or even three. But ten miles? Twenty? Fifty?? You're just not ready for that. For that, you'd need to start conditioning your body to be functional for those huge, marathon walks.

The same goes for your shins - an integral part of your arsenal in the Muay...

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What is Head Movement?


By Matilda Chiu

The following is a different perspective on head movement. I don’t claim to be expert on the subject, rather a student of the game exploring the idea of head movement in the context of Muay Thai. 


Muay Thai does not typically emphasize head movement. It is not commonly drilled as it is in boxing. This is due to the diversification of attacks from punching. Defending the head becomes de-emphasized when your opponent mixes in kicks to the body and leg. However, when faced with a volume puncher, a fighter without head movement could be at a disadvantage.

How To Define “Moving the Head”:

What do you do when someone asks you to move your head? Moving the head involves flexion and contraction of the neck muscles. The resulting head positions are up and down (nodding), left and right (shaking the head), and tilted (ear to shoulder).

“Head Movement” From The...

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A Reflection on the Question "Why Muay Thai?"


By Adrien de Fontenay

“Why Muay Thai?” is a question I get asked a lot, so I’m going to try answering it definitively – by telling you why it wasn’t any other martial art.

Like many kids, I tried my hand at martial arts. I grew up on Kung Fu flicks and fighting movies, and like their protagonists, I wanted to be a bad ass. At the tender age of six, I ventured into Judo – my first door into the world of martial arts.

I was living in Beirut, Lebanon at the time. My instructor taught at my elementary school. He was young, fit, and charismatic. An absolute giant in my eyes at the time. I couldn’t tell you what I learned but I remember feeling incomplete. I remember thinking, “when am I going to hit stuff?” – not realizing that Judo is mostly throws and doesn’t really practice any strikes.

The only distinct memory I have with my Judo instructor was when we were...

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Sprinting or Long Distance Running – Which Is Better?

To Run Hard or To Run Long… That Is The Question

While it’s not absolutely necessary to run when you want to fight, it is necessary to do so if you want to perform well.

With running, you can opt between short, fast, explosive sprints or long, steady, long runs. This begs the question: which is better to do? What would help you more as a Muay Thai fighter?

Let’s get a few simple scientific terms and facts out of the way. There 3 types of skeletal muscle. “Slow twitch” are used when doing activites of low intensity, such as walking. They’re called slow because the muscles take a long time to contract, and can endure without fatiguing for a long time. Slow twitch fibers do not produce much force, so they’re not the type of muscles used to lift weights. (Ivyroses, n.d.).

“Fast twitch” muscle fibers are involved in activities that require short, fast bursts of power, such as heavy weightlifting or 100m...

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Elite Coaches Need Not Be Champs


By Daniel Nguyen

Coaches get slack from casual fans, who think these sideliners are either washed-up, untalented or some combination thereof.

A world champion may have the experience but not necessarily the communication skills to pass on their knowledge clearly. Quite the opposite, a regular fighter who may never be a world champion yet has the talent to see gaps and convey them succinctly may be a great coach.

It all comes down to the fact that some people may have a natural affinity for the physical aspect of fighting while others may gravitate more towards plotting the chess moves necessary to slay opponents’ kings. The physical and the mental — you can’t fight without both, working in unison.

When it comes to head coaching, there can be several factors that determine success, but the criteria of being a world champion should not be a core pre-requisite. With that said, let’s take a look at some of the...

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How Physiotherapy Helps the Body Recover


By Brian Ward

Even if you’re young and strong, you’re still at risk of getting injured. One injury could be minor, which will only take some rest to recover fully, while others can be serious and may require extreme measures to heal.

Before you undergo any possible surgeries, you might want to try getting physiotherapy first.

What Is Physiotherapy?

Physiotherapy is a method of treatment that helps people with injuries or those suffering from illnesses heal. Clinics like Bentall Physiotherapy assess the severity of your condition, give you a physical exam, and then create a treatment plan for you. The various treatments used in physiotherapy may include one or a combination of the following:

  • Movement and exercise
  • Massage
  • Acupuncture
  • Ultrasound
  • Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS)
  • Heat, moist heat, and cold therapy
  • Light therapy

6 Ways Physiotherapy Can Help Your Body Perform At Peak Levels


#1: Pain...
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The Good, the Bad and the Ugly that Muay Thai Taught Me

The First Lessons Hurt the Most

(Story written by an anonymous Nak Muay)

Where It All The Beginning

Scorpion-Mortal-KombatI first heard of Muay Thai during the summer of 2004. It was a couple of the months before my senior year of high school, and friends and I were playing Mortal Kombat: Armageddon.

We were creating custom characters and choosing their fighting styles, and as I looked over the various styles my friend urged me to choose Muay Thai.

When I asked why, he said “It’s supposed to be this bad ass martial art from Thailand.”

I had never heard of Muay Thai, and I remember choosing something else to his disappointment. Looking back at this I chuckle because the stances and moves are not like the martial arts they claim to represent, they’re just generic combos that they added to make us believe that the game had a sort of martial arts spirit as opposed to wanton blood lust that the Mortal Kombat series is.

Being raised in a Mexican-American family, I...

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How to Develop Technique in Your Muay Thai Skills


By Sean Fagan

One of the big notions of muay thai is that the training is verygrueling.

The day in and day out of running, sparringbag work, pads, skipping, not to mention all the sit ups, pull ups, and pushups is the norm.

As a community, Nak Muay Nation has developed the reputation of hard training makes you a great fighter. And for the most part, that is 100% true.

Without a doubt, you have to put in the work to reach a level of skill worthy of fighting in the ring.  But fitness and cardio will only take you so far. You will reach a point where your opponent is just as “diesel”  as you are… or even more. It is at this apex that you will always lose to a more skilled opponent. It wasn’t because you weren’t in great shape, it was you not having the skills to keep up.

Take for example Saenchai. Why is it that he is able to easily defeat his falang opponents?...

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Are You Making These 3 Heavy Bag Mistakes?


By Sean Fagan

“Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery

“It’s not daily increase but daily decrease. Hack away at the unessential.” – Bruce Lee

Making a mistake means you’ve wasted a portion of your time, or worse still, you’ve set yourself back so far that you must now spend even more time correcting and making up for your mistakes.

We want to minimize tail chasing during your heavy bag training sessions by developing a NOT to-do list, because what you don’t do determines what you can do. Time to save time. Let’s dig in, shall we?

Note: For each mistake listed, there will be a correction that comes with it. If you’re impatient simply read the corrections and the bold. 

Mistake #1: Just going through the motions.

All the below...

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Are You Overthinking Your Muay Thai Training?


By Angela Chang

Beginners tend to overthink things. They can’t be blamed – they want to make the most out of their experience and want to be as prepared as possible to learn. Still, there’s nothing like overthinking something to throw a stick in your own spokes and stop you dead in your tracks.

The motivation to learn and become better is great, but the fallacies that come with it can ultimately make beginners their own worst enemy. Here are some of the most common questions beginners tend to overanalyze far too often.

OVERTHINKING IT: How do I do this perfectly?

Some nak muays get so caught up in trying to do something perfectly. Waiting to do something perfectly is not ideal. Many fail to realize that trying to do it, no matter how wrong or “imperfect,” is better than not doing it at all!

People are afraid to “fail” and that itself is a major setback....

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