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Everything posted by LengLeng

  1. Here's a very long story as a context to my question on how to use hands in muay thai scoring. I started fighting in Thailand 2019. My gym in Bangkok couldn't get me fights so I found my own way, inspired by Sylvie. After three pro fights basically on my own, my gym wanted to set up fights for me at MBK in Bangkok. Then I tore a meniscus in a spartan race and then I lost my job. Found a new job in Yangon, Myanmar. Started training at a lethwei gym trying to heal my knee waiting to go back to Thailand to fight. Then I injured my other knee. Second wave. I kept training waiting for my gym to open. I realised covid will drag on and I got mentally ready to fight lethwei. So with knee injuries, my hands, elbows and head became my focus. I discovered lethwei is not just douchebag LeDuc and headbutts, but many beautiful techniques. My gym opened. Co-owned by a ONE championship MMA star. I was getting ready. Then 1 February 2021 happened. Military seized power. Since then, its been a nightmare. Before I moved to Myanmar, all my muay thai trainers warned me "Myanmar is a dangerous country". Well, now it is. I've had machine guns up my face. Friends being threatened. Daily I hear explosions. When army started using snipers, killing civilians, childrens, just anyone randomly with shots to the head. Or by arresting them, torturing them to death in prison. The youngest killed was a 5-year old playing in her own living room. Well, people started fighting back. Six decades of being ruled by Tatmadaw -which is only fighting a single war: against its own people. And an international community paralysed. People got organised to fight back. So did my gym. I saw defense trainings happening. I saw people coming going. I knew what was happening. I saw the pain and frustration of the people who had experienced a smell of democracy for a decade, and then it was again taken away from them. Just like that. Yet, each morning my teachers would train me like any fighter. Pushing me. Challenging me. Rewarding me for my hard work with massage and cold water to my forehead. One night, 1am, I got a lot of calls. There was an explosion at my gym. People told me not to go to training in the morning. Apparently a selfmade bomb had exploded and severely injured my teacher and left the gym in ruins. My teacher's brothers (one pro footballer, one working with development) took my teacher who had severe burns to a private hospital. Another teacher went into hiding. The army got hold of that, took my teacher to an army hospital. The brothers, girlfriends and other trainers were brought to prison. Where they remain. I haven't been back to my gym since. My gloves are still there. I'm training outside with a friend who used to work for the same gym and is traumatised too. Worried for his friends. Hiding from authorities calling him, trying to get info. I don't know the case of my teachers who are in custody, just that what they are charged with is severe. He and I. We. Just. Keep. Trying. Knowing lethwei might die with this. But still, finding joy in training. And my trainer, all he dreams of is getting to Thailand to work and fight again. Anyhow. After this novel/emotional dumping Somehow through this, my punches, my uppercuts my hooks are getting way stronger. No gloves training is no biggie, my hands are strong. I'm trying to improve my kicks but rainy season, outside with no mats, no bag it's hard. So even though I think faster with my legs, my hands are becoming my best weapons. And I plan to go to Thailand in a couple of months and just hoping I can get just _one_ fight to channel all this I've experienced. But I don't know how to use my hands in a smart way in muay thai scoring? Just go for KO or do you get points for combinations and dominating fight through hands?
  2. I have never seen it myself in Thailand. Its more the showing extreme humility if you lose a fight. And the general respect of anyone entering the ring. And ONE championship, I haven't seen it either. But since I only speak a little thai, trash talk might happen in other ways. Like behind the back gossip but I don't know. All I know as a woman, the lack of this macho shit, helps my appreciation for the sport.
  3. Another trick I was taught having a knee issue: working on southpaw stance so I limit pressure on my knee and in a fight won't expose it too much (was my front leg knee). So if you have pain in your shoulders, work more on keeping distance and using your legs more so you can drop your hands at safe distance but still being able to attack. A teep replaces a jab any time .
  4. He's right I'm definitely femsplaining. Today I asked my trainer: Can I do xyz because I had pains. He told me: It's up to you. I cannot see your inside. I think that captures the philosophy. Only you can know your limits and what's pain, what's soreness, what's fatigue, what's over-training? Best of luck. It's a tough sport that requires a lot of introspection.
  5. It's completely normal that you get tired in your shoulders after a while. And you take a break and drop your guard. That's when my teachers either smash my face with the pads or hold the pads higher to make it even harder. This is my current training schedule (no bag) which is for me "easy" and just maintenance: 3k run. Warm up. 4 min shadow boxing. 6x4 min pad rounds focusing on one specific combination. 2x3 min sparring. 1x4 regular padrounds. 10 min leg work (agility duck walks, low squat jumps) 10 minutes shoulder plus abs. I complement this training with weigh training once a week and I also do swimming and yoga. My shoulders hurt at the end of my rounds. I drop them without noticing. My legs cry during agility work. But I don't focus too much on it because I expect it. You will get better at enduring the fatigue or tiredness if you do more pushup, pullups, hanging, weighted skipping rope and shadow boxing holding dumbbells. It's hard measuring other people's pain and there might be an alignment issue, so yoga could be an idea for you as well. But what Oliver and I are trying to say (I'm not looking for sympathy but yeah the situation is shit and thank you, I appreciate it) is that tiredness and pain are part of it. You learn to endure it. How much tiredness is tolerable to you, only you can answer it.
  6. I'm tired everywhere. And I have various old injuries and pains that come and go. My gym was in a bombing incident and my teachers arrested and gym confiscated by the army (I'm in Myanmar you might have heard of the coup here). So I'm training outside in a park. It's uncomfortable training with shoes. Training barefoot is better but the ground and small stones hurt and my feet sometimes bleed so I have to wear shoes. We don't have enough shin guards (coup situation) so sparring, even very light, can be painful. It's rainy season so lots of times it's raining. And plenty mosquitoes. Also people passing by giving unsolicited advice. I don't sleep well, I have nightmares. So the early mornings are tough. And it's uncomfortable. I still train as well as I can. Learning. Embracing adversity. When my morning run feels heavy I do a body scan. Are my toes ok? My feet? My ankles? My shins? My calves? Usually, it's only a small part of my body struggling. So why let that part dictate my general feeling? I love my training. And the fatigue and pain. Endurance training psychology told me: it's not how you feel physically. It's how you feel about how you feel physically. And endure discomfort. You might focus too much on this pain. Or you might need to increase strength and only a coach that meets you in person could give proper advice. But in short. Martial arts... it's hard and heavy and painful and you are almost always tired. But meaningful doesn't equal comfort. Just my 2 cents.
  7. This is only my (one) opinion. I trained muay thai and lethwei for about 3 years and I only have 3 professional fights. But here goes: Things will be hard. Get used to it.
  8. You are mixing pain and tired... Maybe try see a doc first to make sure this is not an injury? If not, work on shoulder strength and maybe wear lighter gloves?
  9. Yes it is very normal to be tired. Everyone training muay thai is tired. Keep going. Pushups, pullups, weighted skipping rope, and other upper body exercises will help you get stronger.
  10. Is it pain or are your shoulders simply tired? Tired arms and shoulders come with boxing, it is tough holding up your guard and punch. Building strength can help (pushup, pull up and other strength exercises tailored to your body) and just getting used to it. It's an uncomfortable sport. L If you have tightness or other pain, hanging can help. Just hang from a pull up bar (feet not touching the ground) it gives your spine a release. I had shoulder pain (think it was inflammation caused by weird clinching move) for almost a year. Three times I did this 20 min yoga that goes deep into the fascia and I was fine. Just ignore the hippie talk. But some poses hurt a bit FYI. För general alignment and pain issues I find this account very useful to follow: https://instagram.com/yogabycandace?utm_medium=copy_link (not sure why the video appears twice can't delete sorry)
  11. Yeah fully agree with you on fighting training. On hunter gatherer, I'm not sure we should be limited to our evolutionary background. But I'm also not too informed about the subject so I don't feel confident enough to discuss. It would just be speculation/uneducated views from my side.
  12. This is very beautifully put. And it captures all the risks of fighting on your mental health. I do believe though, at the same time, fighting can be healing and empowering. And it's about managing this double-edged sword that is the real challenge. I can also see why Buddhism plays such a large role in muay thai, non-attachment and acceptance are important mental strategies to manage all this (and of course, the difficult life of growing up to be a fighter). I'm not sure I agree about humans are not built for fighting. I think fighting has always been a part of humanity, although we might not be physiologically built for it. Also when we were hunters and gatherers. A means for survival. We just re-enact this now in an organised manner, while humanity has developed other weapons where our limbs are not our weapons (although keyboard warriors use their fingers a lot obviously ).
  13. ...ahahaha go watch Forks over Knife or similar. To circle back to the topic. Blows to the head, concussion and depression, are there established links? I keep hearing about it but haven't seen any research.
  14. Imdb is never wrong but please don't go lower than 8. Keep your standards.
  15. Hi! It's sometimes called "the great Wall of China" and its super annoying and Sylvie has written great advice on how to counter it here: https://8limbsus.com/muay-thai-technique/sylvies-tips-counter-to-the-wall-of-china-block-and-more In Myanmar Lethwei they use the same movement as a kick. Instead of simply using it as a block/shield they push through the leg using hip power so the shin actively pushes the opponent away (rather explosive movemen). It's very difficult to learn, but a great technique and kick to be used at a short distance. It hurts a lot and can be used the same way you use a push kick to create distance. Not sure if it is used in muay thai, but I would assume it's legal and when I train in Thailand next time I definitely want to use it.
  16. Hi! We discussed muay thai as therapy before, but while researching links between training and depression I came across the following, and particularly this section I found interesting. Or actually, it concerns me a bit as I can somehow relate and it challenges my view of always pushing through. "Serotonin helps regulate mood, dieting can affect serotonin levels, which can lead to depression. Light exercise can boost these levels; fighters, though, suffer from yo-yoing serotonin due to extreme dieting and gruelling workouts. Research shows that over-training and making weight can lead to physical and mental side effects such as flu, cold sores and mood swings (Richard Budgett. ‘Overtraining Syndrome.’ British Journal of Sports Medicine, 24 (4) pp.231-236). “When you are experiencing a depression you will usually assume it is a drop in motivation,” explained James. “What happens is that, as you start to become depressed, you have to get up and train anyway, but doing it with all the physical symptoms of depression. Because you can't see this, you put it down to a lack of motivation and try to give yourself a kick up the arse. “Then you become even more disillusioned in your performance levels and ability, which causes even more hormonal and chemical changes in the brain. This gives you physical symptoms, such as tiredness—you can't concentrate or sort things out—and things become a massive effort. “Because it is not recognised as depression, and as the symptoms take hold, you think you're losing your ability. Things you’ve usually done—like getting up at 5a.m. to run—feel like they are slipping away. They'll still get up and do these things; people will see them doing them and think they're OK. “With my clients, we go through that whole cycle, starting with acceptance (of depression). They can then recognise if they start to slip again, and stop it before it gets hold. Outside the world of sport depression is seen as staying in bed with the curtains closed, so they see getting up and doing things, even with low motivation, as a sign they're not depressed. " https://www.boxingscene.com/depression-boxing-silent-blow--73467 What I would like to know if it has been demonstrated that repeated blows to the head can cause depression?
  17. @F2 V2314 The experience I have of Western coaches is that they have the idea that there is _one correct_ way to do things, perhaps due to lack of exposure to a vast skills pool. Then there are Thai trainers who know all of the techniques but want you to commit to their specific technique. This situation also sounds like an ego thing involved when it comes to your teacher. I have many times had the issue that a certain trainer would tell me to do something I would not agree with. But I have mainly trained in Asian gyms and etiquette and language barriers have hindered me from questioning their approach. Instead, I usually do what they say, try to embrace it, but at the same time do my own thing when that particular trainer is not there. One example, I was told to not switch to southpaw during sparring, because I am not "there yet". I can understand that kind of reasoning, but I had a knee injury at that time and I had focused on working on switching stances and I had been doing padwork working both stances in the same session. First of all, the martial art I train encourages switching stances, it is better for injury prevention and of course, in case I feel my knee in a fight I want to be able to switch stance easily. But I am not gonna argue with that teacher, so I do not practice southpaw when he is around, instead I do it on my own or during private sessions with a friend. I generally stick to a gym and/or teacher if I believe in it. I only switched gyms when my teacher left or when the gym had to close down. But I am also a big fan of seeking out other techniques, so I regularly do privates on top of group classes. I just keep it low key not to disrespect anyone. Sort of walking the non-confrontational path. I guess switching gym would depend on what other options you have? Is it possible for you to try out a few other gyms without your current gym knowing? If your current gym environment is not good for you, why should you stay? Especially if there is a lack of trust.
  18. It would be very interesting to read and translate. I'm so amazed by this region and the beautiful martial arts forms developed.
  19. Yes. I'm in Myanmar and could facilitate a translation depending on the source and how "old" the language is. Burmese is a complicated language.
  20. Is this story in Thailand seen as proven truth or viewed more as a mythical story? I saw a Thai discussion on this where Thai people stated it's just a legend but we cherish him highly. More a symbolic thing. For example I'm Swedish and we take great pride that it was the vikings from Scandinavia that discovered America first, however we also see other viking legends as historical myths. We are still proud but we understand a lot is simply just historical tales/myths. From Burmese side, as this been a point of discussion (I won't go into the reasons here as we don't want this to be political) is that they are not really aware of the importance of Naikhanomthom in Thailand and they are embarrassed to talk about what they did to Siam in the past, because they (Myanmar) were so brutal. Also they are aware they were brainwashed by army in the school abt their own history. This comes from several sources including a historian. I'm happy to facilitate a translation of the Burmese script if I get it.
  21. To jump in on this with experience from a not very clean gym. We only had a bucket shower and toilet that didn't flush. Plus gym got flooded a lot in rainy season. Probably the reason I was mainly the only girl. For me, I only clinched with younger thai boys who knows how to handle hygiene. Some foreigners spread infections to others as they didn't know the importance of rinsing themselves afterwards. I got some rashes. Some toe fungus. (Sorry TMI). What helped me was rinsing body with water after and between sessions. Use my own gloves and wraps. And baby powder. Thai people are usually very hygienic even when sanitary standards are not that great. Whatever the sanitary standards, just keep clean, rinse, care for any wounds. My main health issues were bronchitis, knee injuries, muscle strains and the shingles. The shingles is somehow well known in thai gyms I believe it's due to training a lot and weak immune system as a result.
  22. Thank you for sharing this Sylvie. I shared with a trainer friend who took on a very heavy client (100kg plus) recently so he can share with his student. Could I hijack this with a question? My trainer friend is a bit concerned abt the knees and potential injury since the guy is so heavy. They do kicking and knees. Any advice? My advice would be agility work (backwards walking/ running is great for knee stability) wallsit, strengthen VMO and proper stretching warmup to activate inner thigh muscle etc.
  23. I lived 3 years in areas with lots of malaria (South Central Africa) 2 years in Bangkok, Thailand. Now Myanmar since 1 plus year. I've never taken any medication and been lucky. But depends on where you are and the kind of malaria being spread. Dengue seems common though, I know several people who had it (urban and rural areas). So measures against mosquito bites are always a good advice. From someone who have had some bad luck with some nasty parasites, deworming pill might be a good option. I take one every 6-month. .
  24. I am still struggling with flared elbows leaving my sides open losing power in the punch. Recently I got a great advice from a teacher with a karate/mma/lethwei/muay thai background. In his karate gym, they taught students how to use straight punches and hip power by telling them that the ends of their belt should sway/dance from side to side. This means their hips (rather than their shoulders) are involved in the punch, transmitting the power. This kind of visualisation of an invisible belt has helped me.
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