There are only so many moves in Muay Thai, punches, teeps, elbows, knees, kicks and clinch. But the possible combinations and options of when, where and how to use these moves within a fight are infinite.
As an athlete, injuries are inevitable. It's simply impossible to place your body under the kind of stress that we athletes must endure on a day to day basis and not have some sort of backlash every once in a while. For the most part this will be in the form of minor aches, muscle strains, bumps and bruises. But the problem is when you sustain an injury that prevents you from partaking in your sport for an extended period of time. This is obviously a major problem, especially for professional athletes as not being able to compete in your sport means a loss in earnings. There is also the issue of regression as a result of the lack of training. And then there's the phycological aspect of suddenly having all this free time and no out let.
In my last blog post I discussed the question I am often asked by prospective clients and students and that is how long does it take to learn Muay Thai? In that post I briefly touched on some ways to steepen the learning curve and increase your rate of progress. So in this blog post I am going to expand on those points and list 8 ways by which you can learn and progress faster in the sport of Muay Thai.
This is a fair question and if you're planning on investing time and money into something, you want to have some sort of idea of how long it will take. But there is no real answer to this question because the truth is as long as you are training and seeking knowledge you will always be learning. The beauty of Muay Thai is in it's simplicity. We don't use 100 different fancy triple spinning kicks, we mainly use a round kick and a front kick but the amount of time spent sharpening these weapons makes them awesome.
One of the biggest barriers people have to training is that they don't have enough time or are too tired after work. Working full time can take a lot out of you and you would be forgiven for wanting to put your feet up and unwind with a nice glass of wine after a long day. The problem is your health is being neglected by this routine and lack of exercise and as a result your quality of life too will be negatively affected.
I've been to Thailand for training 4 times now over the last 8 years for periods lasting between 5 weeks and 12 weeks and until my last visit I spent all of that time living and training in Bangkok. I chose Bangkok because that is where the majority of the best fighters in the world are based, where the two most prestigious venues for Muay Thai, Rajadamnerm & Lumpinee stadium, are. And where the most serious and intense fight training happens. I had never considered training anywhere else because I've always seeked to avoid 'tourist' gyms. My ideal gym in Thailand was one where there were a maximum of 3 other foreigners training there and the less the better. I always wanted to submerse myself fully into the culture of being a professional Thai fighter in Thailand and felt this would not be possible in a gym full of foreigners.