Muay Thai, the national sport of Thailand, is one of the most respected combat sports in the world. Though it is only starting to gain recognition thanks to endorsements from Hollywood stars, Muay Thai is a centuries-old art and is extremely effective for self-defense. The martial art is based on moves that are simple to execute but deliver devastating damage.
“The Art of Eight Limbs”
Muay Thai is considered an 8-point strike system because fighters strike using eight contact points of the body: both hands, both elbows, both knees, and both feet. In comparison, Traditional forms of striking, such as Karate, often emphasize only the hands and feet.
Unlike MMA or other striking forms, there’s not a lot of dodging and weaving to avoid the opponent’s attacks. Muay Thai is almost purely attack-oriented. Balance is vital, so fighters train themselves stay on their feet as much as possible. Once they find an opening, they strike rapidly and relentlessly to get their opponent out of the fight as quickly as possible (this is why we recommend cross-training with a grappling art like Brazilian Jiu Jitsu).
Muay Thai engages the entire body during training and combat. Practitioners will develop a high level of body fitness and build muscle strength in the legs, arms, and core which will improve movement, striking force, agility, and clinch stability.
A “clinch” is known as the act of keeping an opponent at close range by holding onto their head and arms. Muay Thai is world-renown for the extremely effective striking from this position. One may use this position defensively to disable their opponent’s attacks by closing distance, or to try and take them to the ground. Fighters may use this position offensively in many ways, such as to execute powerful low kicks, knees, or sweeps to take their opponent off their feet.
The Golden Rules Of Training: Safety First!
At North Coast Jiu Jitsu, we teach Muay Thai striking in a manner that is safe, fun, a great workout, and will equip you to defend yourself.
Our top priority is the safety of our students. Our 3 golden rules are (in order):
- Protect yourself.
- Protect your training partners.
- Watch your mat space.
Through these safety precautions and a positive environment of encouragement, we have seen our students shed hundreds of pounds, get into shape, and learn a lot in the process.
Health Benefits of Muay Thai
Muay Thai is an excellent fitness activity that equips you with powerful self-defense tactics while tuning your body into shape. It is an excellent sport to train for beginners to advanced, from kids to adults.
Here are some of its benefits:
1. It builds lower body strength
Your lower body muscles benefit tremendously from practicing Muay Thai. Footwork and kicking are an integral part of the combat sport, and they help build muscle endurance, agility, force, and muscle tone.
2. It is an excellent cardiovascular exercise
Muay Thai is an extreme cardiovascular conditioning tool that increases the stamina of your cardiopulmonary system. It is both aerobic and anaerobic, and a fantastic exercise for cardiovascular fitness.
3. It increases core strength
Your core refers to every muscle in your trunk, not just your abs. Muay Thai involves a lot of rotational movement, which means your core is continuously engaged whether you’re striking, defending, moving, or clinching.
4. It improves hip mobility
Over time, the kicking and kneeing increase hip mobility. Good hip mobility is a blessing, especially later in life, as it can help you avoid a lot of pain and medical complications.
5. It builds confidence
Muay Thai allows fighters to focus on themselves, their bodies, and their movements. Training and watching yourself get stronger and faster is a surefire way to build confidence in yourself and raise your self-esteem.
6. It is an excellent stress reliever
Muay Thai provides an outlet for all your stress and worries. It also takes the pressure off your mind and allows you to work up some sweat after a long day.
Where Can I Learn Muay Thai?
North Coast Jiu-Jitsu is a martial arts center where you’ll find highly experienced Muay Thai artists ready to train you to reach your personal goals. You can start from zero and gradually become a better Muay Thai artist, reaping all the mental, physical, and psychological benefits along the way. We are a thoroughly equipped training facility, and we have highly qualified Muay Thai instructors.
James was originally born in Hilo, Hawaii but moved around a lot as a child and ended up living in many different places around the world. Eventually his family settled in Texas where he went to high school. In 2003 James joined the Marine Corps as an infantry man and deployed to Iraq as well as Okinawa before his contract expired. After the leaving the Marine Corps James eventually began training MMA in 2010. It was at that point that he began to really fall in love with the striking aspect of mixed martial arts. James has been training Muay Thai and kickboxing exclusively for 7 plus years. During that time he became the IFS middleweight champion and has had the opportunity to train along side many high level athletes from UFC vets to Glory kickboxing fighters. He is well versed in many aspect of striking but is always looking to further his knowledge of the fight game. James hobbies include training, strength training, video games, and spending time with his family.
After the leaving the Marine Corps James eventually began training MMA in 2010. It was at that point that he began to really fall in love with the striking aspect of mixed martial arts.