There are some rather jarring differences between spin group at the local fitness club and a typical Muay Thai class.
Besides the obvious differences, there is an entirely different level of commitment and tenacity required to train in Muay Thai.
The first class will set a high bar for your tolerance.
If you’re feeling a bit unsure about just picking a gym and turning up to a session, here are some tips on what you can expect from your Thai boxing experience:
A typical beginners’ class is likely to include most of the following:
What is not to like about elbows? They’re deadly daggers yet also devastating clubs. These so-called “hellbows” are what makes Muay Thai stand out.
Elbows are one of the tools that, if your opponent is unskilled with them, could result in their complete obliteration. If you’re one of the fellas that isn’t as skilled with elbows, this post is for you.
Like punches, there’s a basic vocabulary that you must be familiar with before you can add in the grammar (in other words, striking principles – e.g. setups, angles, etc.).
In this Evolve MMA video, Kwankhao Mor. Rattanabandit, a former Rajadamnern stadium champion, will demonstrate seven elbow strikes you must know.
ELBOWS & GAUGING DISTANCE
Now that we’ve got a basic vocabulary, let’s start putting some sentences together.
Like in all strikes, ...
We often see top X lists revolving around some sort of variation of “Who is the P4P greatest (insert combat sport) fighter of all time?” This tends to open up the subjective conjecture floodgates instantly. Soon your favorite fighter is being derided, you’re comparing someone to Hitler and the topic ultimately peters out with nothing of substance having been said or realized.
It’s just the nature of the conversation and it’s all in good fun most of the times. Who doesn’t love it when the “Keyboard Warrior Memes” start flying around?
I often think, “Why do these topics, which should simply be fun and lighthearted, so quickly devolve into online verbal death matches?”
I think the answer is because perhaps our identification with certain fighters and certain types of fighters tends to resonate with us more so on an emotional or personal...
From hiding an injury to camouflaging a kill-shot, there are plenty of reasons we lie in the ring. Today, we focus on feinting.
It has been said that boxers excel at disguising their punches, and I agree: with fewer weapons, you have to get creative with your setups. But this isn’t about “boxing feints.” Though this breakdown draws from boxing experience, it’s about feinting tactics that work across all combat sports.
In order for any of the feints covered in this article to work, you must establish real threats. Maestro Charles Selberg explains from a fencing perspective, but the combat sports carryover is clear:
“My policy is to give them a smashing, fast, direct attack, straight at the target [and] meant to land, in the very opening moment of the bout. I make it, fine; if I don’t make it, fine. The idea is not...
Known as the "Art of Eight Limbs," there's a lot more to Muay Thai than just learning kicks, knees, punches, and elbows. In fact, like many martial arts, learning this ancient style offers a lot of rewarding health benefits.
Besides equipping you with vital skills to protect and defend yourself, you will also notice some changes in your appearance and behavior. How so? Well, the Muay Thai mindset is aimed to push you to your limit, but more on that later.
It Helps You Get Leaner and Stronger
With that, an hour of practicing Muay Thai is way better than having an hour swimming lesson which can help you burn 400 calories or lifting weights at the gym (300 calories)!
Physical benefits are one of the most rewarding benefits that Muay Thai has to offer. Since a Muay Thai class moves typically at a fast pace, students can usually burn up to 1,000 calories an hour spent...
Think it’s too late to start training in your 30s? 40s? 50s? It’s not. No matter what age you are, whether you’re eight or 80, it’s never too late to begin training.
Hang on – how’s that old saying go? “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks“? No. The new saying goes, “The quickest way to become an old dog is to stop learning new tricks.”
Martial arts is not simply a new way for you to view the world, it can lead to a completely new you.
Check out this Evolve MMA video outlining seven ways martial arts will change you and your world:
Never Too Late To Start
Let me address the most common worry about starting martial arts post-20’s: “But I’m not in good enough shape to start training!”
Hear this: Few people actually begin martial arts in good shape. They begin martial arts, then they get in good...
I struggle with rest. I like routine. Regardless of how I feel, my fight camps read like a schedule. My training sessions and meals are planned out perfectly.
During fight camp, every moment of my life revolves around my fight. If I get an injury, that’s just too bad. If I am exhausted, oh well.
I struggle to understand you need to give your body and your mind time to recover – that recovery is just as important as training. I equate unscheduled rest with personal inadequacy. I think:
I’m not good enough.
I’m too weak.
My opponent, she’s not resting.
Why would I?
Because we are different people – different fighters. We have different bodies, and different means of training. Needing a break should not equal failure.
We train in a sport that is tremendously stressful on the body and the mind. During fight camps, we train two – three times a day, and six...
Sometimes, a Muay Thai class can make you feel like the coaches are speaking another language. Jab? Cross? Roundhouse? What do all of these things mean??
Whether you’ve just started out or you are just beginning to think of going to your first class, here are some terms you can expect to hear. Muay Thai veterans! If I miss anything important, please be sure to comment below with your addition to the list!
The jab is one of the first things anyone will learn. It’s a straight punch from your front hand (so a left straight if you’re orthodox, right straight if you’re southpaw) to the face. It’s often used to set up other strikes and to create distance.
The cross a straight punch from your rear hand (right if orthodox, left if...
In some places, there is a kind of fluidity between being an amateur Muay Thai fighter and a professional one.
The main difference is the presence (or absence) of shin guards, head gear and/or elbow pads in the fight. Many fighters move regularly between pro and amateur just to keep active.
However, in most other countries, such as the US, once you go pro, you can’t go back to being amateur. In these countries, the difference between being amateur and pro is not so much about the gear, but whether or not they get paid.
One’s pro debut is often made a big deal; once a fighter is pro, a certain level of skill and discipline is expected. Most fighters obtain at least 20 amateur fights before making their pro debut, making sure their amateur career gives them a solid foundation before jumping up to the next level.
Both the fighter and trainer realize this base is very important, as the fighter cannot afford to make the...
You fought and are now taking some time off. Weeks turn into months, and months into years. Finally, the time has come when you tell your coach you’re ready to get back in the ring.
You train hard, make weight, and now it’s time to fight. The first round starts and you feel incrediblyslow. This surely isn’t your first fight, but you feel very slow to react and have trouble finding your distance and timing. This goes on for another round or two before you begin to feel your familiar rhythm flow back into you.
Even if during your time off from fighting you were still training, you may experience something called ring rust when you start competing again. Ring rust is a phenomenon experienced by many when they take a (long) period of time off from fighting and they’re not feeling as sharp as they did when they last competed. They can feel physically slow; feel more nervous than normal; be less...