Although it emerged in Thailand as an ancient martial art hundreds of years ago, Muay (moo-ay) Thai or Thai boxing has recently risen to international popularity in martial arts circles and in spilling over into mainstream fitness trends because of its accessibility and effectiveness at achieving health goals. It is the national sport of Thailand because of its strong cultural ties and enduring popularity in and out of the country. What exactly is Muay Thai? It is a kickboxing technique sometimes referred to as the “art of eight limbs” because of how effectively it utilizes multiple surfaces on the body in striking techniques. Muay Thai engages the hands, feet, elbows, and shins synchronously which makes it widely recognized as one of the best forms of martial arts, both for fighting as well as a fitness activity.
What makes Muay Thai boxing such an excellent health practice? The answer boils down to the multitude of ways is engages muscles in the body combined with the endurance required to sustain oneself through a training session – it is the perfect combination of aerobic and anaerobic activity. This means it not only develops muscle tone throughout the entire body but is great at burning calories. Experts report that one hour of Muay Thai can burn up to 1,000 calories, making it the epitome of a full body workout. Even a casual Muay Thai practitioner or nak muay undergoes powerful conditioning exercises in the course of one workout. Most trainers incorporate everything from jumping rope to core exercise to prepare their students for practice fights. In addition to its physical health benefits, Muay Thai boxing can help improve mental health and motivation. Many students report feeling an increase in their confidence, mental health, and resilience after only a week of regular workouts. It’s no secret that mental and physical health are closely linked, but the rigor of Muay Thai makes it stand out from other fitness activities.
Whether or not you have interest in the fighting aspect of Muay Thai boxing, the practice has a multitude of health benefits you can gain simply through regular practice. While some Western practitioners choose to go to ancient martial art studios that feature Muay Thai training for a workout, the most authentic experience is available to tourists in Thailand through Muay Thai camps. All of them cater to beginners with no martial arts experience and even to those just hoping to use Muay Thai to get in shape. These camps range from one week to a month and all are relatively inexpensive, particularly when you factor in that room, board, and fitness equipment is typically included in the price. A Muay Thai camp in Thailand is http://www.muaythai-thailand.com and it can improve your health. All feature professional trainers and Muay Thai fighters from Thailand to run workouts grounded in the traditional practice and with expert guidance. Some tourists like the experience to a boot camp in its intensity, but all report a very positive experience and a notable increase in their physical health, from weight loss to muscle tone. No matter your experience or your goals, Muay Thai has something to offer everyone.