Tonight my client began his third hour of his Course on Basic Muay Thai for Martial Arts Cross Training. Work was primarily geared toward creating flow and building stronger transitions between techniques.
We warmed up with mirror footwork, paying particular attention to angling off, creating distance and taking ground. The rhythmic rocking motion of Thai footwork was emphasised to help generate momentum in techniques. These began with the jab and the teep. Then we used the four-punch combination pattern to blend in both teeps and round kicks. Taking ground was reiterated through the execution of these combinations where yet more differences between Western Boxing and Muay Thai were raised. Jabs are either pawing/pushing techniques or power punches, and rarely thrown in isolation. Rolling of the hips is even more important with Muay Thai when throwing a rear hand straight or cross. Lead hooks are often thrown with an angled step out or v-step. Despite the heaviness of these punches, the main purpose of punching in Muay Thai is to set up attacks from other weapons – the elbows, knees and kicks.
The lead leg round kick was trained almost exclusively as a switch-kick in order help maintain momentum and go generate more power. This delivery method would also be applied to the next technique taught.
We isolated the spear knee and I also introduced the entire concept of knee strikes. We looked at the use of the hips and the importance of rising onto the ball of the foot when throwing a knee. This was then combined with the first two punching combinations. Here the Dracula guard was also incorporated for more protection when striking at the range of the knee.
Finally we moved onto elbow strikes. We focused on the horizontal elbow, training the lead and rear hand strikes together and then using push jab to set up the rear strike.