Tonight began my client’s first hour and a half of a projected 10 hour course on Basic Muay Thai for Martial Arts Cross Training. This is his third course with me, having previously studied self-protection and western boxing for martial arts cross training.
We began with basic Muay Thai footwork. Muay Thai’s footwork resembles Western Boxing to a certain extent. Both cover the same ranges and angles. Both have drop steps and both used a lot of shifting. However, Muay Thai’s distinctive difference is in the slight rocking motion they use. This provides a lot of the momentum Nak Muays use when they throw their kicks. The warm-up consisted of moving in various directions using the Muay Thai method. I then brought in the Western Boxing punches, so my client could get an immediate feel for executing techniques on the move. These are superficially the same and is a product of Muay Thai adopting Western Boxing’s “mufflers” in the 1930s. The glove dictates a lot of how a punch is thrown. Although it is true that there are Muay Thai gloves, adapted more for the clinch, they don’t really change anything in the way a punch can be used (except for the obvious being allowed to grab and hit). Thai punches tend not to be so snappy and rely on less upper body movement. They need to be heavy and are used to set up other techniques.
The rear leg teep was introduced in conjunction with the jab. This was first taught in a cross-body seesawing action. The left jab pullback gives momentum for the rear leg knee raise. After this action was confirmed and I was confident my client could keep his balance, the teep was extended into a proper kick. We looked at delivering this to the leg and the mid-section.
The lead leg teep was then isolated before being integrated into a jab/cross combination. Next I introduced the low round kick off the lead and back leg.