Thai Clinch (diary entry)

Swarming clinch clinch sweep Knee strike to head from clinch26.09.2022

Hour seven of my new client’s Muay Thai course focused on developing the Thai clinch. I also introduced diagonal, horizontal and curve knee strikes. After our warm-up of footwork, muscle activation exercises, dynamic stretching and shadow boxing we moved onto the basic clinch.

The position taught is the double collar tie or “plum” position. From here looked at dominating the inside position as well as pushing and pulling using the basic box footwork (forwards, backwards and lateral). This was taught as a means for setting up the spear knee strike.

We then moved onto the collar and elbow tie where the pivot footwork came into play along with the curved knee. I introduced the balance break drill using this concept. This illustrates the art of the Thai clinch – breaking an opponent’s posture whilst timing it with a strike and keeping up this rhythm.

I then brought in a locking off position whereby the head is posted and the opponent’s arm is leveraged. This is a great set-up for the diagonal knee strike (considered by some nak muays as just a positional change on the spear knee). It also can be used to execute a legal Muay Thai takedown.

Finally, as we brought these concepts together in a free-flow positional change, I taught the horizontal knee which can be a useful blocking and posting tool during a clinch.

We then looked at a basic method for entering a clinch and what to do immediately after breaking a clinch.

We then brought this onto the belly and focus mitts for 2 x 3 minute rounds. Round 1 focused entirely on clinch whereas round 2 brought everything taught so far on this course together.


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