Jump to content


  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


MTninja last won the day on January 31 2020

MTninja had the most liked content!

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location

Recent Profile Visitors

The recent visitors block is disabled and is not being shown to other users.

MTninja's Achievements


Nong (1/14)



  1. Hi guys I just came back from Santai and want to do a review as it was a really good experience. I will use the same categories I used for my other review. Instruction - 5/5 I have been to a fair few thai gyms (mostly in Phuket) and Santai blasts them out of the water when it comes to instruction. Rounds are 5 minutes each and you will always get 5-8 rounds each day even when there are 35-40 students (though you might have to wait a bit longer). You are also deliberately placed with different coaches every session which is great as it allows you to experience different personalities and different fighting styles - ranging from stoic boxing champion/Muay Khao Boraphet to playful Muay Femur twins Lop and Phon. Every coach I've had at Santai watched and corrected my technique. They even stayed behind to hold extra pads for me when I had a question or am struggling to grasp something. The younger coaches will also spar and clinch with you - especially if you have a fight coming up. Re the Pinsinchai style - I really didn't notice a particular style per say but everyone's technique was very clean. Santai teaches traditional MT - so standing very tall, back hunched, big emphasis on kicks and knees etc. The coaches will also often talk about the point system when they explain to you why they are putting specific combos together. If you are looking for more of a dutch/MMA style of Muay Thai then this is probably not the gym for you. Class Format: 4/5 Training "officially" starts at 6am each day but the first part is just running. There are 3 running tracks to choose from - 4.5km, 7km and 10km. The 7km is the prettiest scenic wise but the 4.5km is the only one supervised by a coach. For the longer ones, especially if you aren't as fit, I highly recommend you get a local SIM first as you don't want to get left behind by the fighters and have no idea where you are halfway through. If you don't run, arriving at 6.45am is perfectly fine. Except for the running, training is pretty guided. A coach who will lead you through shadowboxing and stretching then you just look at the whiteboard to see when you are meant to have pads held and who by. You do bag work while waiting your turn and, after all the pads are done, you usually do sparring or clinching or repetition work. All supervised. Then its warm down stretch and conditioning - where again, you are guided through the entire process. Everything is nice and easy - if not a little too routine. Atmosphere: playful but also serious This gym is the best of both worlds in terms of training environment. The coaches and other long term students will joke around with you and won't judge you too harshly but, at the same time, they are very serious about the art. Most people who come to Santai are there solely to train and, therefore, push themselves fairly hard. There are beginners of course but there is also a pretty high percentage of foreign fighters - ranging from people who are about to have their first fight right up to girls who hold multiple world titles. There are also two Thai fighters there who are high level as well as 3-4 foreign guys that do Muay Thai as a career. If you are good enough, getting a fight is easy - male or female. The whiteboard listing upcoming fights is often 75%+ full all the time. Facilities: 3/5 This is where Santai struggles a bit as it just isn't as well put together as e.g. Khongsitta or Sinbi is. Although still functional, the equipment in the gym is clearly on the older side of things and the weights section is really small and needs to be updated and fleshed out asap. The gym isn't overly dirty but it isn't sanitised every day like western gyms are either. There are also cats everywhere. As for accomodation...its ok I guess. The room has everything you see on the website but, except for Baan Nak Muay, none of the rooms are cleaned once you move in. One of my teammate also had bed bugs in his room. There is an onsite Fairfax store and it has everything you need. However, the Fairtex gear isn't that much cheaper than it is back home. Location: 3/5 Santai is outside of Chiang Mai city. The gym can organise airport transfer so getting there isn't an issue but there really isn't much to do once you get there. You've got a bank (for currency exchange) and stores like 7/11 of course. There is also plenty of cheap, healthy thai food (and two or three western cafes) but there is no beach and no nightlife except for the Saturday night market (which is still only street food + clothes/misc. accessories). San kamphaeng is very much a residential area. One thing of note though is that there is a temple where you can get massages for 150 baht. Ask for the monk who used to be a Nak Muay - he is very good. Santai doesn't offer any guided Chiang Mai tours. However, they do organise a 11-12km run every Saturday where you'll be running up to a very famous temple. Be warned though - the view is beautiful but you'll be running up a hill the entire way essentially. Female friendly? Yes, very. Lisa who is a multi-time world champion is there right now. Lommanee also trains out of Santai. Both are sponsored by the gym and there are photos of female champions hanging in the gym wall. There are heaps of foreign girls who fight out of this gym and they get the same treatment and pad rounds as the guys. Final word: this isn't the prettiest gym but its got a lot of heart. Hopes this helps!
  2. I went to Sinbi around 4 months ago. I thought I should do a review as it seems to be quite a popular gym. Class Format - 3.5/5 Classes are 2 hours each and usually follows this format: 15 minute running or skipping -> stretching -> hand-wrapping -> shadowboxing -> bag work & pad work (5 rounds of each, usually 3 mins each round but may be 2 if it gets too busy) -> sparring or clinching or technique (I didn't like this format as technique is only ever taught as the same time clinching (morning) and sparring (afternoon) happens) -> cool down exercises and stretches -> Sinbi cheer Overall, I think the class structure is just ok. As mentioned above, I didn't like having to choose between sparring/clinching and learning techniques. I also thought sparring every day was excessive, even if it alternates between boxing and MT. Although Sinbi does have a weights room, there also doesn't seem to be much emphasis on conditioning or repetition -> sometimes, we are told to do 50 sit ups or to do 50 kicks on the bag as part of the cool down exercises but its definitely not like other gyms that make you run 10km or do 200 knees/push ups (you are only required to do hundreds of kicks/knees if you are fighting for them) Instruction - 3/5 On paper, the krus are extremely well-qualified with hundreds of fights each and numerous belts between them. There are also some (shoutout to Dee, Cookie and Bao V) who are very experienced coaches and who are very patient and generous towards students. Most of them knew at least enough English to teach. Unfortunately, there are some newer, younger coaches who don't care much about the students. They will make you do the same combos again and again and won't provide you with much correction at all. They will tell you you are doing "good" even if you feel like your technique isn't quite hitting the mark. The worse bit is that once you've had a trainer a few times, you are likely to be pushed towards him for the rest of your trip. I did somehow manage to correct this problem by having a few PTs with my assigned trainer. I didn't like him much but my friend said things will change once you do PTs with them. Lo and behold, my friend was right. After only two PT sessions, he started putting a lot more effort in. He not only became much more alive while holding pads but would even deliberately walk up to me while I was hitting the heavy bag or when shadowboxing with suggestions. He turned out to be a very knowledgeable teacher with a very sharp eye. Too bad he could only be bothered teaching me when there was more money involved and would keep asking me to do a daily private with him. Overall, there are around 15 trainers on staff. The ratio is at around 3 to 1 so that's pretty good. My friend who went a year ago though said there was a thai female trainer/fighter there. There isn't. Big boss Sing also seemed to be absent most of the time I was there. Facilities - 5/5 This is probably the best aspect of Sinbi. The gym itself is massive and very clean. I didn't count the heavy bags but there must be at least 20 to 25. There are also 3 full sized boxing rings and at least 5-10 exercise bikes. There is a large weights room too with everything you'll need as well as a very well stocked (but expensive) shop. They can take care of your laundry, organise airport pick-up for you, organise taxis and day trips - name it and you'll get it. Accomodation is also very, very good for a gym - legit, the Sinbi Apartment look and function like a service apartment and is very safe and very clean. It also has a swimming pool. Location - 4/5 The gym/accomodation is located in an area where you can get anything you need within 3-10 minutes walking. This includes massage shops, laundromats, thai and western restaurants, a 7-11, street food, cheap clothing shops, a barber and even a Thai language learning school (as well as a scuba diving school). The only downside is that you will need a scooter to get to the beach, to nightclubs or to a large shopping mall like Central Festival. Female-friendly? Yes While I was there, the male to female ratio was around 2:1. Like the men, they were given fight opportunities if they were up to the required standard. Women often trained in their sports bra and were not made to enter the ring via the bottom rope. They were not made to do pad work last and were allowed to clinch/spar the Thai boys if there weren't enough women or there were odd numbers. There was some friendly flirting from the coaches (stuff like "you're beautiful!" or "pretty girl!") but nothing that crosses the line. Overall: 7/10 - its what you expect from a Thai gym but not much more. Will go again if I was in the area but would not plan another trip around this gym.
  • Create New...