What is Muay Thai?
Muay Thai or Thai boxing is a martial art that originated in Thailand. Its history dates back to approximately several hundred years ago in the 14th century. However, many details of its beginnings have been lost and shrouded in mystery, as this was a period of national conflict.
Little is known of Muay Thai’s origins. But we do know it was developed to emulate the body to be a tool for combat, with each branch of the body copying elements of traditional weapons or armoury of the time, such as daggers, swords, arrows and shields.
Modern day Muay Thai achieved great attention during the early 20th century when Western troops were stationed on the Eastern island and were exposed to the martial arts first-hand.
Today, Muay Thai is the national sport of Thailand. It gained mass popularity around the world and spread across popular culture which can be seen recently in the film Only God Forgives starring Ryan Gosling.
Who are Muay Thai classes for?
For someone looking for a traditional but ever-developing practice, Muay Thai is perfect. It’s highly energetic, but at the same time requires steady focus. So you don’t have to be incredibly fit, as the martial art is more about how skilled you are or want to become.
Known to test both mentally and physical capacity, Muay Thai is suited best for someone not only to gain knowledge but to get incredibly fit with at the same time.
Muay Thai training is also a fantastic tool for self-defence, so if you’re looking for a confidence boost or to make yourself feel secure, learning this combat sport is a great way forward.
What will I learn from Muay Thai classes?
There are many different variations in style and they all really depend on your athletic ability or what you want to focus on. The core striking focus is usually on kicks, punches, elbows and knees.
One of the most important training basics is your stance, which your instructor should go over with you on day one. This helps you get your feet in the right position to do key punches and kicks.
A great way to influence your style is through shadow boxing. In this case, you’ll be studying your stance, but also practising your technique in front of a mirror. It’s a good idea to review your peers during this time to push your own skills to the next level.
Once you’ve tackled the basics, you’ll be able to put your learning to the test by getting involved in sparring, pad and bag work. But don’t worry - you won’t be thrown into the ring until you’re ready!
There are also lots of competitions to get involved with, both at home and abroad. It’d be beneficial to speak to a teacher, if this is something you want to get involved in, in order to get an understanding of what it takes to compete.