The Benefits of Heavy Bag Training

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There are many techniques in Muay Thai, and the most common way to train them is by bundling them in combinations. The combinations themselves are usually arranged specially to develop some kind of skill or simulate a particular situation you may face in combat. For example, the combo Check, Teep, Chase Jab Cross would simulate you having checked a kick that your opponent threw, then quickly throwing a teep to try to catch them on one leg before the kick is withdrawn. While they’re knocked off balance, you close the distance and hit them with the 1-2.

In order to fully understand a combo, it’s best when trained in five ways – Shadowboxing, Heavybag, Thai Pads, Cooperative Partner and Sparring. Each of these training methods will develop different aspects of the combo and altogether combine to produce the finished result, which is a combo usable and effective in full contact under stress. In this article, I’ll focus on the benefits of the heavy bag.

  1. Power – The heavybag is a great tool for developing raw power, since it can’t be hurt and doesn’t require a great deal of accuracy to hit. Striking accuracy will be developed using Thai pads and partners, so it doesn’t need to be as much of a consideration when hitting the bag. That means you can focus entirely on hitting hard. You can think of it like sculpting, where the heavybag work is the initial chiseling of large chunks off the block so that it can be shaved down, styled and smoothed later.
  2. Conditioning – The bag is also great for building cardio, for the aforementioned accuracy not being an issue and also because you can hit a bag anytime without training partners so it’s easier to get in extra workouts.
  3. Toughening – In any striking art, the joints can take a beating. Even if you can throw a punch or kick hard, your fists or shins might not be able to handle the impact over time. The wrists, elbows, shoulders, hips, knees, shins and feet all must be conditioned for health and safety reasons. It might look cool on YouTube to kick banana trees, but almost all top trainers will say the same thing for shin conditioning – kick the heavybag, hard and often.

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Want to learn more about how to get in great shape with a heavy bag? Come and check out our Muay Thai programs in St. Albert for ages 5 and up! E-mail us at tlarone@arashido.com or give us a call at 780-217-0059 for more information.

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Congratulations to Derek “Honey Badger” Jolivette on his victory in Toronto!

This past weekend, Derek “Honey Badger” Jolivette and his coach Kru Ryan Timoffee from Arashi-Do Sherwood Park represented Lom Pa Yu Muay Thai in Toronto at the Canadian Muay Thai nationals tournament. Not only did Derek defeat Jake Mackenzie, he was also awarded the honor of “Best Athlete”. Awesome job, Derek!

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Love to compete, or just want to get in great shape this year? Come and check out our Muay Thai programs in St. Albert for ages 5 and up! E-mail us at tlarone@arashido.com or give us a call at 780-217-0059 for more information.

Muay Thai Culture and History – Wai Kru Rai Ram and Muay Boran Demonstration

In class students often hear Khun Tyson refer to Muay Boran, which is the ancestral martial art of Muay Thai. Indeed, when you watch Muay Thai and Muay Boran side by side it becomes clear that the basics of the style haven’t changed a whole lot, but there are subtle differences. For instance, in a warfare style like Muay Boran elbow strikes to the base of the skull and kicks directly to the knees are commonplace, as these sorts of blows are effective for immobilizing, maiming or killing an opponent quickly. In sport as a general rule, victory without lasting or irreparable damage to the opponent is the best case scenario. These kinds of strikes are illegal so as to allow for fighters to have long and accomplished careers.

This video begins with a demonstration of the Wai Kru Rai Ram, sometimes simply called the Ram Muay. This is a ritual of Muay Thai to this day, where fighters will perform a series of movements mixing fighting techniques and dance to pay respect to their trainers, family and ancestors. While most Ram Muay performances share a basic outline, most will have personal touches that may represent where they come from, where they train or their unique fighting style and personality.

Upon completion of the Ram Muay, they demonstrate some of the techniques of Muay Boran. You will recognize many of them from Muay Thai, but will see some techniques ill-suited to the rule set of modern muay thai as well as some grappling and throws that would be more characteristic of Judo or Jiu-Jitsu.

Fb 30 day trial profileWant to learn more? St. Albert Arashi-Do now offers Muay Thai for ages 5 and up! Call for more information at 780-217-0059, e-mail us at tlarone@arashido.com or visit us anytime athttp://www.arashido.com .

4 Ways to Be a Great Training Partner for Muay Thai

All martial arts require good sportsmanship and Muay Thai is no different. If you love Muay Thai then you know how good it makes you feel when you train and spar. This cannot be true for everyone however as some people are not lucky enough to have good partners. Training and sparring with your classmates requires that you have a good personality. A good person always teaches others and in the case of Muay Thai, he/she always does their best to be a good training partner.

Here are four ways to enforce the idea of how to be a good training partner in Muay Thai:

1: Don’t Be a Jerk

No one likes people who are arrogant and display how good they are at something as if they’re the best. If you want the other person to feel comfortable sparring with you, then keep it light hearted. You don’t have to be cracking jokes in the middle of the session, just say something to ease the tension (if any) between you and your partner. This is especially helpful when sparring with a person of opposite sex as being a bit loony can give you two the jolt to spar better rather than keeping your distance. When the time is right, smile and crack a little joke, but make sure that you don’t make someone a target of your joke as it will be very disrespectful.

2: Give Others a Chance by Thinking Positive

As sparring is crucial to Muay Thai training, chances are that you might pair up with a member of the opposite sex. This can make most people nervous, especially if a guy is paired with a girl. Guys will be hesitant to kick or punch a lady and won’t want to be the ones who ‘raised their hands at a woman’. Relax! This is Muay Thai; anyone who takes up Muay Thai knows what they’re getting into. When sparring with a person from the opposite sex, just make sure that you follow the rules of Muay Thai. If you’re more experienced, give them a nudge in the right direction and let them hit you a few times to make them feel comfortable. This will show them that you are a positive person and are giving them a chance to learn.

3: Don’t be a Know it All

When learning Muay Thai at a gym, you are there to learn from the instructor. No matter how many YouTube videos and Muay Thai fights you may have seen, don’t try to be a know-it-all and try to show everyone you know everything there is to know about Muay Thai. Everyone is there to learn from the Muay Thai instructor so instead of trying to show off new techniques, go with the class. In time you will realize how little you actually know, as training and learning from a real instructor is never going to be the same as watching videos on the internet. Flow with your teammates and if you think you can do a technique in a better way then make sure that you consult with your instructor quietly instead of boasting loudly about your immense knowledge.

4: Keep a Cool head

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Martial arts are all about learning patience and discipline. Sparring in Muay Thai is about learning and getting the feel of how a real fight would be like. Don’t lose yourself in the heat of combat and hit your partner with powerful blows to knock them out. Remember, this is not a match, it is a training session and you’re both there to learn. If you hit too hard then the other person will get bruised needlessly and will most likely make a complaint against you. No one will want to spar with you again and you will lose credibility. If you want to hit hard then do it in the ring or on the bags. In such times deep breathing is always helpful and can help calm your nerves.

Fb 30 day trial profileCome down to Arashi Do Edmonton and try out one of our great Muay Thai classes or BJJ, Women’s Only BJJ or Children’s BJJ for ages 4-7 and 8-14.

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What to Look for In Boxing Gloves and Shin Pads

learn muay thai 2Throughout your training of Muay Thai, you’re going to end up acquiring a lot of equipment. You’ll constantly change between what you need and what’s right for the situation you’re training for. There are literally hundreds of brands and styles to choose from, so getting the right equipment for you can be a bit of a minefield. You want to get the right equipment before your wardrobe turns into an equipment warehouse, so here we’ll highlight some key features to look for before purchasing your next set of gloves or shin pads.

Gloves

Muay Thai in EdmontonWhen you’re starting out, you’ll need a pair of basic gloves to protect your hands when working an opponent or just a hanging bag. To be perfectly honest, you can get away with a standard pair of boxing gloves. You don’t want to splash out on anything expensive just because you don’t know if Muay Thai is going to be for you, as it’s not for everyone. As you start to get in to it, and begin to improve, you can invest in a solid pair of Muay Thai gloves. The difference being that Muay Thai gloves offer protection for both wrists as well as the hands, where as boxing gloves only cover the hands.

Once you’ve found a design you like, appearance is half the battle after all, its about finding the right weight. The weight of your gloves can be directly related to your weight category in terms of competition. Your glove weights range from 8 to 20 oz.


8 oz & 10 oz – Light and Agile for Competitive Boxers

12 oz – Gloves for women or people with small hands for Muay Thai Training

14 oz & 16 oz – Your average sized gloves for your average sized trainee

18 oz & 20 oz – Larger weight classes training gloves.

The weight of your glove is important as it will have some influence on the speed and power of your strikes. The majority of the UFC pros use 8 to 10 ounce gloves to stay agile and nimble in the fight. As we aren’t pros though, there’s a little more scope for choice.

The most desirable characteristic we are after is comfort. You’re going to be spending thousands of hours in these gloves so they need to fit snugly, to prevent your hands moving in the glove and causing injury. Eventually, you will beat the gloves into shape, so you can take a glove that feels a little too tight as in time it will become perfectly fitting for you. Don’t forget to try the gloves on over your hand wraps as that is going to add size.

Shin Pads

Muay Thai Gear EdmontonShin pads come in a variety of types, defined by the amount of protection that they offer. The types are Cotton Foamed, Synthetic/Leather, Synthetic/leather special prints, Synthetic/Leather Double In-Step. The cotton foamed pads are usually the cheapest so may be the best choice if you are starting out, however they do offer the least protection. They do offer some advantages of being lightweight and easy to slip on or off, but often slip around when they are in use.

The most commonly used are the Synthetic Leather standard options. They are the best seller and there are reasons for that. They slip around much less than the cotton foamed pads. These are however designed for tournament usage so may not be the best ideal for your regular training.

The other types vary in design but offer much of the same protection, other than the double in-step pads. They offer a little more protection and as well as that they are around 30% lighter letting you train harder and faster.

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Where it can be a tough choice to make, as long as you chose the right pad for your needs you can’t go too far wrong. Give the equipment time though, as they will mold to your body and become more comfortable as time goes on.

Arashi Do not only offers a good variety of training gear but Awesome classes too.

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A Brief History of MMA – Muay Thai

buddhas_thailand-t2In spite of the importance of the fists in mixed martial arts competitions, and in spite of the fact that boxing has always been a full-contact event, MMA requires more than just the fists to strike with. Thailand has a tradition of mixed martial arts events going back to the earliest records. While boxing is arguably the national combat sport of the English-speaking world, Muay Thai is without dispute the national sport of Thailand. There is even a Muay Thai Day celebrated on March 17 in honor of the sport and its place in Thailand’s national culture and history. 

Muay Thai is unique among historical full-contact sports due to a combination of several factors: the laxity of its rules, the length of time it has been practiced, and its enormous popularity throughout the millennia since its inception. Unlike the Roman pancratium, Muay Thai did not lose its popularity to other events; it has remained strong right up until today. It is thus the greatest example of a living, full-contact, mixed martial arts tradition. Modern kickboxing and the mixed martial arts style shoot boxing, both originating in Japan in the twentieth century, were inspired by it.

Nearby countries also practice the sport but under different names and sometimes with more extreme rules. The Burmese Lethwei traditionally had no rules at all. Even biting was allowed. A knocked-out competitor was asked upon revival if he wished to continue the fight. Only the acknowledged submission of the adversary enabled a competitor to win. An adversary’s simply refusing to submit no matter what occurred, including death, would result in a draw.

Muay Thai traditionally allowed striking with any part of the body. This meant that fists, elbows, knees, shins, feet, and the head were all used. Grappling was also allowed and was used for holding the opponent to deliver strikes and to slam the opponent to the ground. No part of the body was off-limits to attack, and some fighters specialized in striking the groin with the knee, foot, or other parts. Kicks were often aimed at the knee of the opponent’s supporting leg in order to break it.

As Muay Thai evolved as an art with military application just as wrestling styles did, the prohibition against continuing the fight on the ground is understandable. Fists were often wrapped in sturdy rope, and adding sharp materials to the rope was not unknown. Victory was attained by beating the adversary to such a degree that he could not continue the match. Thus, developing toughness was a key element in training. In more recent times the rules have been altered in favor of protecting the competitors more. Points are now tallied, head butts and groin strikes prohibited, and modern boxing gloves worn.

 

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Come down to Arashi Do and try out one of our Awesome Muay Thai program.  We will help you succeed in your goals whether it is weight loss, general fitness, something fun to do or even competition.   All that and you get a 30 DAY FREE TRIAL and a Free Training DVD just for coming in!