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SunAndSteel

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  1. You can book private classes on the Yokkao gym's website. Just pick a trainer, or a fighter, select a date and proceed to payment;) In regards to Yokkao's cleanliness, I can only say that it is not any dirtier than the average Muay Thai gym in Thailand, which means not very clean for western standards, but all in all passable. I remember reading a review of someone saying that the gym was incredibly dirty and that potentially deadly infections lurked in the dusty corners: nonsense. Imagine that at Sitsongpeenong I witnessed the little dog of one of our trainers pee (and worse) around the heavy bags, where we walked around barefooted. I never saw anyone disinfect the area. The only downside I could think of is in the fact that there is little clinching trained at Yokkao - which for me was a good thing as I hate clinching, although I must admit that it is a fundamental part of Muay Thai.
  2. I have read that certain areas of Thailand produce certain styles of Muay Thai. Unfortunately, I couldn't find any detailed information, but from what I could gather, it seemed that in a particular region of the country more emphasis will be put on a certain aspect of the fight ( for example: clinch), while in another a fighter will use a particular guard. It would be interesting to try and draw a map of the different fighting styles according to the different areas of the country. I don't think this has to do with the actual style of the single fighter (Muay Khao, Muay Mat, etc.): it rather seems to be something more "at the source", it seems to have to do with how every part of Thailand developed its own branch of Muay Thai. Does it make sense?
  3. Thank you Kevin. Glad I received an answer from none other than you How about Kiatmoo9? Their fighters seem to be highly dangerous with their right kicks and right elbows.
  4. Well, I would be careful about wanting the "thai experience", for that is exactly what I sought and that disappointed me about training in Thailand. Unless you speak Thai fluently, and you are only and exclusively into fighting, you won't enjoy being surrounded by Thais only in some camp in the outskirts of Bangkok. I went to train at Sitsongpeenong (Bangkok) for a few weeks, thinking that its isolated location, its huge stable of Thai fighters, the lack of any distractions around the facility, would lead to the ultimate Muay Thai experience. It turned out, however, that mine was a foolish way of reasoning: the eastern outskirts of Bangkok became rapidly boring after a few days, the Thai fighters wouldn't really speak to me or any of the other students, while the trainers barely spoke a few words of English; it was impossible to socialize, and that, added to the fact that there was nothing in terms of distractions outside the training hours, quickly made my stay very different from what I expected. I learnt that distraction from training, as long as it is not intended as drinking and partying, is equally as important as training itself. For what concerns Yokkao I can strongly recommend it. Not only is the gym located in the heart of Bangkok, in a beautiful area in which you won't feel isolated, but the training and the vibe around it are great. The vibe, in particular, is what struck me most pleasantly: there is a sense of joy during training; everybody laughs, smiles, has a good time; you see Manachai smashing pads, Singdam coming back from his daily run, and Saenchai arriving at the gym looking for the first victim to prank. The quality of training is high, the level depending on your skill: I have seen lazy tourists doing the minimum required and professional fighters being pushed to their limit; you will have to show interest and motivation, for you will only get what you are willing to give. But no matter what, Yokkao has nothing deserving criticism. I had a private session with a trainer named Sak, and found him a great coach, highly experienced, patient and motivated. Please consider training with him if you are at Yokkao. For what concerns privates with Saenchai, I recommend you to book them in advance and be ready to pay 200$ per hour. Saenchai is not only the legend of this gym, but also the head of it: it was my impression that the type of Muay Thai taught at Yokkao resembled very much Saenchai's style on the ring: clever, elusive, fun. That would be it about Yokkao, but there is another gym I want to recommend to you, though it is located in Ao Nang, in the South of Thailand. It's called Khunsuek, it opened only recently and is a state-of-the-art facility. It certainly caters towards westerners but there is a trainer here, named Peteak Sor Suwanpakdee, who is by far the best coach I have ever had, who will tear your technique apart, and push you hard; one class with him is worth the entire trip to Ao Nang. Hoping it helps, I wish you a good trip.
  5. I'm heading to Sitsongpeenong tomorrow; I will let you know how I like it. Where do you train in Switzerland? What is the name of your gym? I am based in Switzerland too.
  6. I have often read about Muay Khao, Muay Fimeu or Muay Mat gyms - gyms emphasizing a certain style and the development of a particular skill; but I would like to know whether there is such a thing as a Muay Tae gym, that is a gym famous for developing strong kickers. This is namely my main strengths which I would like to take to the next level. Can you recommend one in Thailand? What about Kem Muay Thai and Kiatmoo9? Thank you
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