Top tips for students new to Muay Thai

There are plenty of reasons why people get into Muay Thai. Students looking for a fun and challenging workout often discover the martial art as an effective way to help them attain these goals. Dubbed as the “Art of Eight Limbs,” Muay Thai offers some of the best and most straightforward self-defence techniques. And if you’re dabbling in mixed martial arts, honing your striking skills through Muay Thai will allow you to become a well-rounded competitor.

Whatever your reasons may be for joining a Muay Thai gym, you may feel anxious. That’s natural when you’re trying something for the first time. Listed here are a few helpful tips to help reduce your anxiety and maximise your time in the gym.

Get started now
There’s no doubt that Muay Thai can be physically challenging. However, don’t let your current fitness level stop you from getting started. At the onset, everything may feel difficult. However, if you keep at it, you’ll soon find yourself improving. Furthermore, nobody will expect you to be an expert during the initial phase. Just keep working hard and stay dedicated and you’ll soon reap the dividends.

Learn from the pros
One of the best ways to improve your striking game is to watch others compete. Observe others as they spar or view videos at YouTube. You can pick up a few invaluable lessons just by watching others fight.

Understand the value of shadowboxing
A lot of beginners prefer padwork and hitting the heavy bags while ignoring the value of shadowboxing. But as an aspiring Muay Thai practitioner, you have to understand that shadowboxing offers several benefits for everyone, from beginners to seasoned pros. Shadowboxing allows you to hone various aspects of your game including your footwork and combinations. Furthermore, shadowboxing will allow you to check and fix some of the mistakes you may have been inadvertently making.

Don’t be afraid to ask questions
If you want to fast track your success in this sport, one of the most important attributes you should have is curiosity. Don’t be afraid to ask your coaches or even other practitioners in the gym about certain points you don’t understand.

Invest in quality gear
Some people buy cheap gear because they’re unsure about their commitment to the sport. However, if you’ve been practising for quite some time and you feel that you’re in it for the long haul, you should upgrade your gear. As the old adage goes, you get what you pay for. Ask your trainers or even other practitioners in the gym for recommendations. You may also check online forums and reviews before purchasing new gear.

Invest time
If you really want to become better at Muay Thai, training once a week won’t cut it. Simply put, the more time you invest in your training, the better you’ll get. Allocate at least three days a week to training and soon you’ll see a marked improvement in your skills.

TIMA1-150x150Graham McDonnell and Phil Britten are Directors of the WA Institute of Martial Arts, one of Australia’s leading martial arts providers servicing over 1,500 clients over three locations with their world class programs. In addition to running successful martial arts schools, they have also established The Institute of Martial Arts (TIMA), offering business coaching and learning programs to help other martial arts businesses plan and develop for success. 

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