Muay Thai is a beautiful Martial Art with centuries of tradition, stories and legacies. Given the increased popularity of Combat Sports the world over, there are more Muay Thai training centres than ever. However, with increased popularity comes the good and the bad.
The good? More places to train - woo!
The bad? Some terrible places to train - boo!
Here's a few things to keep an eye out and help you 'seperate fact from fiction'.
1. Muay Thai does NOT have a universally accepted grading system.
Unlike it's Martial Art counterparts, Muay Thai does not have a universally accepted grading system like Karate, Tae Kwon Do, or Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Some gyms choose to have a grading system in order to seperate the skill levels of their students or give them a goal or target to aim for - great! But do not be fooled! Muay Thai does NOT have a universally accepted grading system (or belts... we definitely don't wear belts...)
2. Pra Jiad/Prajiet (Arm Bands) are not worn during training
Pra Jiad are traditional arm bands worn by Muay Thai Fighters when competing. These are believed to grant good luck and safety, and are traditionally created using materials with a sentimental relation to the fighter (commonly a piece of a mother's garment, etc). These are an item treated with respect and are reserved solely for competition (...they are not worn in training!)
3. Learn it all at once!
Muay Thai is an incredible Martial Art - whether for fitness, self defence or competition, however it is also a sport! Learning to use all of your Muay Thai weapons (punches, kicks, elbows, knees & the clinch) from the beginning is VITAL to your skill development. Each weapon is so closely intertwined to the next, with each often dictating why another is performed a particular way. As such, it is VITAL to your progression that you learn to use all of your Muay Thai weapons from the get go. Being forced to learn only one at a time (i.e. boxing for six months until you're 'allowed' to kick, then the same again until you're 'allowed' to elbow) is terrible for skill and athletic development.
There's our top three 'fact from fiction' we've had on our mind as of late! If you have a question about any of the above, or would love to hear more from us, why not drop us a line?