If you are interested in Muay Thai, you want to learn the history, culture, and traditions of Muay Thai, as well as the techniques. You owe it to yourself to become familiar with the art you are studying. Muay Thai is a highly respect martial art in Thailand and is their national sport. While Muay Thai is a dangerous and lethal fighting art, it is also one that requires the fighters and students to be humble, modest, and highly respectful of their teachers and elders.
One of the most important traditions and customs in old school Muay Thai begins with the Wai Khru/Ram Muay.
• The Wai Khru/Ram Muay is a pre-fight ritual that pays respect to teachers and all those important to the fighter. The Wai Khru/Ram Muay is performed by both of the fighters prior to their bout and is, in fact, mandatory in Thailand. It is also one of the most important and time-honored traditions of Muay Thai.
• The mongkon is a circled adornment worn on the head as a charm to bring good fortune. The mongkon is also thought to keep the wearer from danger. The mongkon is worn for the entire performance of the Wai Khru/Ram Muay and removed by the fighter’s corner person or trainer prior to the fight.
• Amulets and charms are deeply regarded in Thailand and are often thought to have magical or supernatural powers to help fighters keep out of harm’s way. Most amulets have been handed down through generations or are family heirlooms. Fighter’s amulets may consist of a dhagrut, pitsamorn, waahn, prajied, or a pirod.
Muay Thai is referred to as the Art of Eight Limbs as the hands, knees, elbows, and legs are used to attack and defend.
Techniques you will want to become familiar with in Muay Thai are:
• Round kicks, which can be targeted to the head, mid section and torso, or legs. A round kick can not only knock an opponent unconscious, but could ultimately end a fight.
• Push kicks or front kicks are targeted to the solar plexus, mid section and hips.
• Punches – including the jab, cross, hooks, and upper cuts.
• Knees can be thrown at the mid section, thighs and legs, and even the face. Techniques for knees are clinching or throwing long knees to catch an aggressor.
• Elbows are the most deadly of the Muay Thai weapons and can cause serious injury. Targeted areas of elbows include the eye socket and top of the head.
Muay Thai fighting is known for the footwork. In a proper muay stance, the posture you execute will put you in a constant ready position. The proper stance and footwork is essential to learning Muay Thai. If you do not have a proper stance and footwork, you will not be in a position to attack or defend. Without basic movements, hands and arm positions, and footwork, it will be almost impossible to expand on your skills.
Muay Thai is a beautiful and highly regarded martial art and sport. The skills you learn in Thai boxing can help you become a healthier and more confident person. You can use Muay Thai to develop yourself physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.
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