Muay Thai book
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Welcome to GLATOW`s Muay Thai page


On this page you can find a very recomandable Muay Thai book which is suited for learning the basic technics, complimented with  advice for competitional training and fights:



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Here are some excerps:

Punching (Chock):

When punching in the traditional Muay-Thai style the legs, in contrast to other forms of martial art, must remain stretched during punching so as to enable a prompt continuation of the attack. Subsequent to a punch the elbows, knees or kicks can be used. The stance is on the balls of the feet and the eyes are targeting the aim. With all these techniques it should be noted that a slightly raised shoulder must protect the chin and that the other hand serves as a defence against possible weapons of the opponent. The punches are carried out with the knuckles of the hand, the upper part of the fist. Power is generated by the jump, swiftness and hip and shoulder turns. For each weapon the weight is transferred to the front leg and to the front.

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Elbow (Sok):

The elbow is a very hard and short weapon which, therefore, requires much training until the elbow technique can be used successfully. The use of the elbow can lead to a knockout and/or bleeding at the head of the opponent. A special characteristic of the elbow techniques is that, even when they fail, it is difficult for the opponent to deliver strong kicks and punches in return. This is due to the close stance. Each punch with the elbow can be used twice, on the way to the target and on the way back. A successful elbow hit frequently requires a quick step forward. The move should be quick as otherwise there will be less power in the technique and the opponent will be able to defend himself.

When using the rear elbow an additional step forward with the rear foot is possible. For all elbow techniques it should be borne in mind that the chin must be protected by the raised shoulder and that the body and legs are stretched. The free hand blocks the opponent’s attacks.The traditional Muay Thai has seven different elbow techniques. Although some of the photos show only one side, there are basically always two options; right and left elbow.The power is generated by means of a possible step forward for shortening the distance, the swift execution, use of the shoulders and the transfer of weight behind the punch. This is usually combined with a lowering of the foot. The elbow techniques must be completed and should not be stopped at impact or due to a mishit. The point of impact is the knuckle of the elbow, which is very hard.

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Knee (Khow):

The traditional Muay-Thai knee techniques are very hard weapons. They can be delivered from the body to the head and may result in a knockout at any time.

It is difficult to copy the Thai techniques by merely watching. In order to be able to achieve the same efficiency the fundamental basics must first be understood correctly. The knee can be used in attacking the opponent, but also as a protective block against kick or knee punches by the opponent.

The knee is a very short weapon. Prior to its use one should be aware of the distance to the opponent and whether he could be hit at all. To this end the hand touches the opponent, so that it can be determined whether the distance is suitable for a knee kick. If possible the opponent will be held by the neck for proximity. Due to the better defence position it is normally the left hand which grabs the left side of the opponent’s neck, or the right hand to the right side of the neck. It must be noted that you never reach out for the opponent with two hands outstretched at the same time, as you may become an easy target, e.g. for an uppercut. Initially only one hand must be used, and only when it comes to a clinch, the second hand may come out for a better hold (Photo 28).

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Round Kick (Te):

The round kick is the traditional Muay-Thai kick. It is different to the kicks used in other types of martial art. The kick can be performed with the front or rear leg. It is recommended to hold the hands tightly in front of the own face. In this way an attack can be fended off and a punch can be thrown right after the kick. Alternatively the front arm can be stretched out for keeping the opponent at bay.

However, many Muay-Thai trainers are of the opinion that the front arm should be pulled down swiftly during the kick, so as to increase the effectiveness of the hip and rendering the kick more powerful. Target areas are all over the body, from the feet to the head.

The semi-circle kick comes in far from the outside and will be delivered by the shinbone. Of particular importance is the use of the hip for a more powerful technique. The raised shoulder must protect the chin and the hands must be held high for the defence against the opponent’s punches.

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Training and Competition:

In a first training phase the techniques are trained in the air. In a second phase they are intensified on a punch-bag. In the beginning it is better not to use a hard filling (fabrics or chips of wood) as the shinbone requires long training for hardening. After some time the punch-bag can be filled half with chips and half with sand for hardening.

Other ways for hardening the shinbones are the use of a bottle with boiling water which should be rolled slowly and firmly across the shinbones (e.g. each side for ten minutes a day) and/or to harden the shinbones with strokes by a bamboo or wooden cane. In my opinion, however, the gradual hardening of the punch-bag appears to be more sensible, e.g. by adding sand.

Having achieved the sense of timing for the techniques on the punch-bag, the pad training can start. This means that the trainer carries two Thai-pads in his hands and a training belt around his waist. There are three steps. Initially the trainer demonstrates the punches, kicks and combinations he wishes to see. Subsequently certain combinations could be trained. The third step consists of free sparring on the pads, which means that the student has a free choice with the trainer intervening in the cause of a faulty defence. To this end there are three options.  Option 1:  the trainer applies continuous pressure on the student. Option 2:  the student applies pressure on the trainer. Option 3:  the trainer attacks with all weapons and the student attempts to come into a clinch with the trainer.

Advanced students can train the sparring with an opponent. To this end it is important that the sparring partners are fair and do not attempt knocking each other out. Generally it can be said for sparring that the training with a stronger partner results in better improvements. Once the student has attained technical skill and fitness he will be able to compete in fights. Prior to a professional career it is reasonable to start with amateur fights first.

The combinations described on page 67 are training aids for a swift and natural use of techniques. During a fight they are neither thought about nor carried out consciously. Following frequent training some combinations may, of course, enter the sub-conscience of the fighter, so that, in certain situations, they are automatically carried out in the ring. All techniques can be combined with each other, so that a large variety of possible combinations can be used. Prior to a fight the trainer will prepare his fighter with combinations best suited for the respective opponent.

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