It is hot training at Muay Thai Kickboxing in Thailand.
The temperature is in the 30's and the humidity is 100%. Most gyms are outdoors and Rawai Muay Thai is no exception. The gym is an open air building with a hot tin roof. The carpets on the floor turn your toes into a blistery mess and the smell of yourself and the other students can be a little overwhelming.
Hot and Sweaty at Rawai Muay Thai
We break a sweat just by entering the area. Even before I start bouncing on the tires or skipping to warm up, a glow of perspiration has taken over my entire body. By the time we get to sparring in the ring, I am soaked and sweat flies through the air as I throw punches and kicks at the trainer.
It feels awesome!
Dave is Going Strong.
Dave is holding strong and loves the adrenaline of throwing punches and learning kicks. Maybe it's a guy thing. He loves getting in the ring doing his best Mohammad Ali impression. “Float like a butterfly sting like a bee”…or as Daves says, “stumble around and wave his arms trying to hit something.”
I enjoy the drills of kicking and punching the trainer's pads, but as we learn more and have to break into pairs to learn clinching, I am not the happiest of boxers.
Clinching is neck wrestling. In western boxing, opponents are separated when clinching. In Muay Thai, it is all part of the sport. You put your hands on the back of your opponents neck and take them down to the ground, or whip them to the side any way you can. When you don't know what you are doing, you can pull some nasty muscles.
Our necks were sore for days.
I found out later that a few other people don't take part in the clinching and grappling portion of the class. One guy we know goes for a 7k run during the final half hour of class. Other's go and work out on the machines or bags while the rest of us slog it out in the ring.
As soon as the clinching and grappling (getting out of neck holds and arm locks) started, I decided that being a professional Muay Thai fighter wasn't in my future.
It was a grand idea, but I have no plan on ever getting into a ring and pounding someone to a pulp or more honestly – being pounded to a pulp.
People are starting to get injuries too.
You have to be careful while your here and not push yourself too hard. It is easy to get wrapped up in the adrenaline and go too hard.
One girl fell to the floor with a bad injury during some heavy bag training. She can't put any weight on her leg and she told me that her knee cap is loose and moved.
It's too bad, because she was good and strong. I know I had to grapple with her one day and she flung me to the floor every chance she got!
Another guy tore a muscle in his calf and has been hobbling around for a few days. Others have minor cuts and bruises and some have raw knuckles to the point of bleeding.
It was like being in Rocky's training gym. I just needed Micky to give me a pep talk to “suck it up Debra and get yourself back in the ring.”
Don't even get me started on the motorcycle accident injuries. More than one person has wiped out and is training with bandages all over their shoulders and legs. We never rent motorbikes anymore. Deaths and injuries happen regularly in Thailand by tourists renting bikes with little experience in insane driving conditions. But I digress….
Today I was lucky enough to end up in the ring with Dave for our Clinching and Grappling session. This was the most comfortable I had been because at least Dave knows what I can take and I know what he can take. I also don't care that I smell terrible and am sweating uncontrollably. Note: Dave isn't smelling the greatest either!
We gave our camera to Ling Lom (our trainer) and he shot away as we tried to wrestle each other to the ground. He definitely got a kick out of the two of us concentrating on doing our moves. We're awkward and really have no idea what we are doing, but once the whistle blows we give it our all. We're stepping in the wrong direction, we're tugging on each others necks, we're falling down and stumbling over each other, but Ling Lom doesn't care, he's laughing his head off…And we're laughing right along with him.
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Bungalows At Rawai Muay Thai on the Premises
Delux with Air conditioning:
- Weekly Rate: 5000 Baht ($166 Can/US) that is only $23 per day
- Daily Rate: 1000 Baht ($33 Can/US)
Shared Twin Rooms – Fan Only
- Weekly Rate: 1500 Baht ($50 Can/US) per person that is $7 per day
- Daily Rate: 300 Baht ($10 Can/US) per person
- 3000 Baht ($100 US/Can) per week- $14 per day.
- 500 Baht ($16 US/Can) per day
- up to 3 group classes per day.
- Classes are two hours in length.
- Unlimited use of weights, and training machines.
1 USD and CAD = 30 Baht