Dive into our love of Muay Thai as we share the latest of what we believe is interesting or impactful to the Muay Thai Life. Stay up to date on the Library, compelling events, and the lives of the legends. Listen to our Muay Thai Bones podcast for other thoughtful discussion. Items co-authored and selected by both of us
https://www.behance.net/gallery/129280263/The-Art-of-Thai-ClinchIn this photo series Kevin digs into the aesthetics of Thai clinch, in an essay of images and words, thinking about what is special in Thailand's clinch. These photos are from a coming Muay Thai Library session featuring Kru Diesel and his fighter Sirichai (Tanadet). See and read the photo essay here. Tanadet has changed his name to Sirichai and has just come back to fighting, a great time to refresh yourself on his skills.
This twitter thread and a series of GIFs and analysis showing how Karuhat managed this battle of kicks and counterkicks. This is even more remarkable considering Boonlai's significant size advantage. Props for Boonlai being able to keep up with the smaller fighter, points for Karuhat being able to manage all that size and speed.
This is basic head kick strategy taught be the master of the head kick Jampatong in the Muay Thai Library (watch that session here). It is exacerbated by Kickboxing's tendency to block kicks with your arms (because of some scoring criteria). In Thailand's Muay Thai you could never get far as a Southpaw blocking your openside with your arms. You can see from this clip, this is a regular, low-armed habit of Petrosyan's.
Over the years I've shared lots of tips on clinch that I've picked up from all my krus & the legends I've filmed with. This is a playlist of those shares. I hope they help! You can also see my full (free) technique vlog playlist with much more stuff to think about here.
When he fought he was called The Man of Stone, but for years he's been a main trainer at Dejrat Gym, one of the hardest gyms in all of Thailand. Watch this hour, especially if you are a coach, and see why we think he's the best padman we've seen in all our 9 years here.
Fahwanmai, whose name means "sky of a new day" was taken under Sia Boat's wing after he great deal of money gambling on a fight that Sangmanee lost. Sia Boat paid off the debt and took Fahwanmai in (named him as well) to the very powerful Petchyindee gym where he has become an internet celebrity and fighter since. He's fought maybe 4-5 times for Petchyindee and most recently against Lahnyamo Wor. Wattana in a televised show in Buriram. Fahwanmai was winning rounds 1-3 and then suddenly going into round 4 the odds suddenly shifted to favor Lahnyamo (5/2). Then in that round it looked like Fahwanmai suddenly couldn't handle his opponent and he was knocked out by an elbow, leaving him writhing on the canvas. Slow motion replay showed the elbow barely grazed him and the cries of a thrown fight were immediately circulating online. There is video of Sia Boat calling on the phone and Fahwanmai backstage swearing he didn't throw the fight. By the next day...read the rest here
This very simple reversal is something I lost sight of in many of my years of clinch training in Thailand where lots of emphasis was placed on the pull. Karuhat showed me that the downward lever can be even more effect, in part because the pull is anticipated. This vlog was unlisted previously, I just made it public and free for everyone.
The powerful mafia boss Klaew Tanikul assembled a fierce fighter stable including Bangklanoi, Inseenoi, Boonlai and management of Dieselnoi, putting one big time promotions. The most interesting thing about this video is how Tanikul gym is portrayed as "modern" with treadmills, computer-aided rowing machines, and with a palatial swimming pool.
The Sport Authority has come out stating that fighters who are not engaging will be stopped and expelled from the ring. (This has happened before, but rarely.) Saenchai has announced his agreement with this directive, saying he has himself received warning from referees for not engaging enough. He said fighters should be trained and instructed by their gyms to "bring their weapons out" and not dance around too much, or else it is correct to stop the fight. He says Muay Thai is becoming more popular among other countries and Thailand needs to lead by example in having engaging, compelling and hard fighters. You can read the Thai source here. Thai comments show that it is not completely clear what this is aimed at. At some fear that they are trying to change Muay Thai into "chon" mindless clashing entertainment, taking out the art & skill, others say it's just trying to remove unengaged 5th rounds, when the fights are already decided by the change in odds. It seems likely an attempt to wrestle control over the fights that powerful gamblers have, giving the referee the power to end a fight.
This footage surfaced and is really educational. Throwing a fight isn't always blatant. In Thai it's called "lohm muay" and translates pretty much literally to the English "taking a fall." keep your eye on red; the ref taking the mic to call it off is called "lai long" and it means being thrown out from the ring. I just feel like this is an illustrative example of how a fighter seems "off" and then the more you watch, the more you see how he's trying to miss while being sure to show the effectiveness of his opponent's strikes.
We filmed with Chatchainoi, who is one of the best padmen in all of Thailand, trainer for the Thai national team, but long before that he was one of the toughest sub 120 lb fighters of the Golden Age. Watch this war with the very heavy handed Lakhin. You can watch a full hour with Lakhin in the Library here, Chatchanoi coming soon. Interestingly when filmed with him he was very insistent that when in mixed stance (Southpaw vs Orthodox) DON'T extend the lead hand. Keep it close in guard, just fire open side. It very likely was from this fight that he learned that lesson.
Renown Kickboxer Giorgio Petrosyan was a Muay Thai fighter before he transitioned to Kickboxing. He did not face top tier stadium fighters, but he did fight Thailand Pinsinchai when he was 33, about to turn 34, in Italy. A fight not many have seen.
Chatchainoi was a super small, extreme tough fighter who fought UP a lot in the Golden Age. We just published his session the Muay Thai Library, but in this playlist you get a feeling of how a small fighter can fight at close range, using range to his advantage.
This Thailand Muay Thai documentary traces several stories including that of Niamh Griffin, one of the pioneers of western female fighting in Thailand at Jitti Gym, and Sam Sheridan who from his experiences wrote A Fighter's Heart. You actually get to see the fight he describes in his much loved best selling book, wary that he was fighting a Yakuza in the heart of Bangkok. Film made by Andy and Suzanne Carvin.
If you loved Ong Bak (and who didn't) and haven't found Merantau do watch it! It stars Iko Uwais who would gain international fame in The Raid. It follows a similar rural to urban tale of traditional, this time Indonesian, martial arts. Spectacular action sequences, and some heart. Watch the trailer here.