Prefight camp homework – Get in shape and be prepared for it. Training Muay Thai and MMA here in Thailand is completely different from doing it back home because no one here has a full-time job or other responsibilities; training basically becomes your job even if you’re only here for 2 weeks. A lot of pro fighters move from Vancouver, Canada to Montreal to train at Tristar, where GSP and other pro fighters train, mainly because in Vancouver, people have jobs. At Tristar, training is their job. I’ve trained at some decent gyms in San Francisco and San Diego, California but it’s always been the same story; people are tired from work so they try to keep the classes as short as possible – most classes outside of Thailand are 1 hour.
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You also have insurance problems and lawsuits, making gyms hesitant to let you spar hard or spar at all, sometimes. Having a fight after only 2-3 months of training would be completely out of the question in America (or anywhere else in the world) but in Thailand it’s perfectly normal and almost expected. My warms up here in Thailand are basically the same as an entire workout back home. Going for a 2.5 mile (4km) run back home in the U.S. is a once a week achievement but here it’s a warm up run before every workout. Lifting weights at the gym is a workout back home but here it’s what we do on our rest days. Saturday sparring sessions is a once a week event as well, but three to five rounds of sparring is standard in every class here, every single day. So make sure you come in shape because you’ll need it! Most Muay Thai gyms offer training twice a day, 6 days a week, with Sunday being the standard rest day across the country. MMA gyms have the same schedule but with grappling classes sprinkled in as well. Typical day’s schedule here at KC Muay Thai in Chiang Mai.
Most other gyms I’ve trained at follow a similar schedule.
Warm Up Run: 2.3miles (3.7km); Jump Rope Skipping: 3-15 minutes (depending); Shadow Boxing: (2 rounds); 10 Pushups and Sit-ups between every round (90 total, of each); Pad work/Bag work: Usually 3 rounds of each (Some days up to 5 rounds of pad work); Sparring/Clinching: Everyday rotates between Muay Thai Sparring / Boxing Only Sparring / Clinching (3 to 5 rounds); Technique/Conditioning: Most days, 200-300 knees and/or push kicks, or 100 kicks with partners on the bag, or practice some type of technique with partners; Group Sit-ups: Everyone in a circle leads an exercise, either sit-ups, bicycles, or pushups (counts to 20); Group Stretching: Really nice to all stretch together – we know it’s important but we’re usually too lazy to do it on our own; Optional Strength Conditioning: For those with a bit of energy left, you can do pull-ups, kettle bells or weights.
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