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Thanks dtrick for linking it, it's in my signature, so I thought it's visible :) :)

And I'm glad you enjoy reading it, I try to really think deeper than usual when I write it, it helps me get things in order and the cool thing is, I'm learning a lot about myself by writing it! :) and I'm still working on the visual side ;) I don't have much good pictures from training I can use, but I will sort it out sometime ;)

Today I went to class and as it's a holiday long weekend, I was the only one there, so I basically had a private class with my trainer :) :) The best thing was, he pushed me to do sommersaults (I hope it's the right word, like you roll over you head to the front or back, or over your shoulder and so on) and he also has shown me some new types of sommersaults. He knows I'm not comfortable with rolling over my head, so it was nice to practice it in peace and quite on my own with his guidance. I learned a lot! :)

Micc, glad to hear your forward rolls are getting better. It's just a matter of repetitions. It might help to know why sports like judo and bjj practice forward rolls... it's essentially the same movement as a forward breakfall. If someone was to throw you over your hip, you could fall/land safely, instead of like a sack of potatos, which hurts a lot more.

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Gavin, thanks! 

I really don't like anything related to falling, mostly because of my weight, so I try to avoid it during practice, even when we do clinch I always say "please no throws to the ground". I'm not ready yet. I hope that one day when I loose weight it won't be as scary, but maybe with practicing these forward rolls I will get better at handling the falling to the ground part! :) 

Of course I get thrown to the ground a lot, but they do it gently ;) ;)

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I'm over 200lbs too, so I understand to a degree. Here's another interesting tidbit about being thrown - when you resist and tense up it oftens hurts more than had you gone with it and accepted the throw. It will always hurt taking a big throw, but you get conditioned to it over time and just accept that it will hurt somewhat.  If you really want to work on this, you can have people throw you onto a crash mat. It doesn't hurt at all, and will allow you to learn to fall naturally and safely without tensing up. I used to take dozens of falls a night on these when I did Judo... Anyway, enough about this.

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Hey sorry for the delay in response. I wasn't searching for a southpaw friendly gym (though it is true no one likes to really practice with a person in southpaw I've noticed.. I get a lot of complaints) per se.. Just one where the coach isn't being a douche.

 

I've still not talked to the coach about the way he has been treating me yet. But in my defense, I've been sick off and on for the past two weeks, so I've not really had the energy to deal with him.

 

BUT that being said, I have tried a gym last week (right before I got sick.. Again) and it was a much smaller place, about 10 mins from my apartment, and I thought it had its pros and cons. The coach was nice enough.. He didn't discount me, which was lovely, and even came to talk to me afterward and set up some extra practice drilling. However, I found his style... A little more aggressive? If that's a thing ? And he's more of a go getter than maybe I'm used to. (That probably makes zero sense, but I don't know how else to describe it.)

 

BUT. he worked on my left kick with me (the one I struggle with, as well as injured myself with), and he really was a seemingly nice guy. I had a better vibe with him than I have with Coach in a while.

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my biggest accomplishment so far is to have trained 4 fighters that had win tournament in Mexico couple weeks ago.

four of kids that I train won that weekend, that was amazing. Such a incredible feeling to see your fighter won a championship. it's amazing.

 

I'm not a good fighter myself, so it's great to be able the share my knowledge with kids who gonna be so much better than me in the ring.

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Not being told you're good at something isn't always bad.

Actually I had this discussion at my gym before, they were saying if you always compliment someone it can prevent them from improving. If I was to get told my body kick was perfect everyday, I'd probably start slacking on the technique.

But it works both ways, if someone was to tell me it was bad/sh*t everyday, I'd get frustrated and upset with myself and that would also prevent me from improving.

The discussion ended with giving subtle compliments or backhanded compliments the best way to go, so that it raises your confidence but you still know you have to improve.

Hopefully this was relevant... :)

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Yeah, but the other thing is that, you can try find to find ways to see that you've improved. For example, if the trainer always corrects your right punch and you find one day that he didn't correct it, maybe because it was good! Maybe you clinched and didn't get threw today, all things like this are signs that you're improving. Sometimes you don't notice your improvements that's why you need someone to remind you to keep yourself positive, as you train the best when your positive.

Also you said people complained about sparring you because you're a southpaw. Are they complaining because you're a southpaw, or because you're tricky? I've sparred many southpaws, and although you have to adjust I certainly wouldn't complain about it (though I might moan about a tricky fighter), also when you spar a southpaw it also makes some things easier, rear roundhouse becomes harder to block for yourself and for the southpaw, so maybe you can land more of them.

Anyway, try to realise when you're improving yourself but as your thread is about, it helps you mentally if your trainer can be positive, he doesn't have to tell you that it was a perfect or amazing kick but he could just say that it was a hard kick, or it was quicker, which is what I was saying before about complimenting without making you feel like you don't need to improve. 

Also, another thing is, but you might not want to do it or you might already do it, is to record yourself on the pads or sparring, maybe just once a month, and when you feel low, just watch last months or watch 3 months ago and compare it to now. You're going to see improvements and that will make you feel good, also laugh at your old mistakes (watching my first fight is always funny), and seeing where you can improve yourself.

 

But on the topic of your trainer, if you have a few gyms in your area, it won't hurt to try some out if you feel like you're not improving like you should be at your current gym.

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Thailand,

My issue with my current gym isn't with the lack of positivity. It's him being rude and disrespectful to me. There's a fine line of being tough but encouraging, and just being a douche, and that line has been crossed more times than I care for. I can't even get him to talk to me about it because he won't return my messages or phone call.

 

As for training southpaw, it's not sparring, it's practicing combos in class. I've only in the past month switched because of a shoulder injury that is having trouble healing. And because everyone in that class is a beginner, they don't understand how to practice with a southpaw. Hence they don't like it. But I can't do the advanced class because, according to coach, I'm not good enough. So, caught between a rock and a hard place. And where I live, there aren't many muay thai gyms at all. The one I go to is already About an hour drive from me.

 

And if I could, I would record, but I don't have a way to do so.

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OK that's just me reading incorrectly. Yeah if you're getting mistreated, you should leave for sure, because the problem is if you get treated like this for a long period of time then you will start to dislike muay and maybe lose trust.

I feel like people shouldn't complain about the combinations though, if they want to be fighters then they will someday have to fight a southpaw, and if they're there for fitness it doesn't make a difference or not.

To be honest, the gym sounds like it has a bad atmosphere which may stem from the trainer, if he's being a dick to people then its going to rub off onto others or make it a place full of dicks. 

Finding a gym, search facebook/google/youtube/rankings, I would assume you've tried all of that already though. The only other thing I can suggest is asking on forums with a wide audience in your country, maybe Sherdog or others. There are a lot of gyms that don't have a website.

Good luck on the gym search. What country are you from?

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Yeah I was wondering if maybe I hadn't fully explained or something. I'm from the US. I have tried searching online. Authentic muay thai that doesn't have other shit mixed in is basically nonexistent. Another reason I am hesitant to leave altogether. And it doesn't appear that he has a nasty attitude with anyone else. That's why I'm feeling really singled out. The other instructors are great, but he's the owner and the coach of the fight team, which is my ultimate goal to be a part of. I really need to talk to him, though. I really want to find out what his issue with me is. I just don't understand it.

 

On a more positive note.. After two weeks of being sick I went back to the gym today. Just some cycling and a little bit of ab work. But it felt good to burn energy. Hopefully by next week I'll be able to start going to class again. And then maybe talk to Coach finally.

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Ah I know the US has a problem with those 'mcdojos' or whatever you want to call them, but I've noticed some really good gyms in the US now, and quite a lot of Thai's teaching there. What's the style of the gym you're at now then?

Anyway, if you're thinking about leaving then talking with the coach can only go well I think, if you're thinking of leaving anyway then he will either say something that'll make you want to leave even more or make you consider staying.

 

Hope you get well quicker... :)

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  • 4 months later...

So I went to go and edit my blogs a bit today and do some updating, and in the process (and feeling slightly forgetful as to the last things I wrote.. haven't been on my blog in a while) I came across this piece that I wrote back in February, a few days after my shoulder surgery. I found that, especially after the last few months of medical drama in my life and not being able to train and go after my goals like I wanted, that it was helpful to me to read again. I hope that someone else might find it useful. 

 http://crazyallyrose.blogspot.com/2015/02/the-big-picture.html

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    • He Returned To The Mongkol A bit of historical context, Somphong who lost vs Samarn above would return to the Muay Thai ring in 1948 to face the feared "Giant Ghost" Suk (grandfather to Sagat), a former imprisoned murderer, who attacked and knocked down Somphong so violently that his corner threw in towel, and it was reported that Suk was boo'd by the crowd for how brutal he was. Suk was a figure of terror in the Muay Thai scene in his day. Historians have pointed out that he was in direct contrast to the more gentlemanly matinee idol starts of Muay Thai and boxing of the 1930-1940s (images of masculine charm and handsomeness persisted through the Golden Age), and was in part promoted by the Fascist regime to move away from reflected composed Royalty, and Royal political power. His transgressive, violent image was a nakleng symbolic of a politics of The People ("Das Volk") as the Phibun dictatorship represented them (it had been aligned philosophically and militarily with Hitler & Japan in WW2). Somphong was nicknamed "atomic fist" (it seems), after the American power that ended the war with Japan. Suk Prasarthinpimai was about 36 years old here, said to have fought into his 40 or even 50s. from this Facebook Post here "ยักษ์ผีโขมด ดวลโหด ซ้ายปรมาณู" วันนี้เมื่อ 76ปีก่อน... วันที่ 16 พ.ค.2491(1948) ศึกชิงยอดมวยไทย ณ สนามกีฬากีฑาสถานแห่งชาติ กรุงเทพมหานคร .."ยักษ์ผีโขมด" สุข ปราสาทหินพิมาย ตำนานยอดมวยไทยผู้ยิ่งใหญ่จากโคราช โชว์โหดถล่มแหลกไล่ถลุง เอาชนะน็อคยก3 "ซ้ายปรมาณู" สมพงษ์ เวชสิทธิ์ นักชกกำปั้นหนักจากเพชรบุรี ดีกรีอดีตแชมป์มวยสากลรุ่นเวลเตอร์เวทและมิดเดิลเวทของประเทศสิงคโปร์ ผู้กลับมาสวมแองเกิลชกมวยไทยอีกครั้ง ...โดยก่อนเกมส์การชกใครๆก็มองว่าสุขจะสู้พลังกำปั้นซ้ายอันหนักหน่วงรุนแรง และความเจนจัดบนสังเวียนของ สมพงษ์ เวชสิทธิ์ ไม่ได้ แต่พอเอาเข้าจริงปรากฎว่า สุข ถล่ม สมพงษ์ อย่างเหี้ยมเกรียม เอาเป็นเอาตาย ไม่มีคำว่าปราณี จนพี่เลี้ยงของสมพงษ์ต้องโยนผ้ายอมแพ้ในยกที่3 ...สุขถึงกับโดนแฟนมวยโห่ หาว่าชกโหดร้ายทารุณเกินไป คิดฆ่าเพื่อนร่วมอาชีพ (ดราม่าเลยว่างั้น) ทำให้ไม่ค่อยมีใครอยากขึ้นชกกับสุข และสุขจึงหาคู่ชกที่เหมาะสมยากมากยิ่งขึ้น ..สุข เผยว่าที่ตนต้องชกแบบนั้นเพราะว่ากลัว ซ้ายปรมาณูของสมพงษ์เหมือนกัน จึงต้องการรีบเผด็จศึกเร็ว ไม่อยากให้ยืดเยื้อ อนึ่งการชกครั้งนี้.. "สุข ปราสาทหินพิมาย" ได้เงินรางวัล 30,00บาท นับว่ามากที่สุดเป็นประวัติการณ์ ในสมัยนั้น พักยก24 : ระบบใหม่ เล่นง่าย ราคาสนาม ออกตัวได้ มีครบทุกความมันส์   (poor) Google Trans:   "Giant Ghost, Brutal Duel, Left Atom" Today 76 years ago... Date: 16 May 1948 (1948) 👊 Muay Thai Champion 👊 At the National Athletic Stadium Bangkok .."Yak Phi Khom" happy at Prasat Hin Phimai The great Muay Thai legend from Korat. Brutal show of destruction and destruction. Defeated by knockout in round 3 "Left Atomic" Sompong Wechasit, a heavy puncher from Phetchaburi.   Defeated by knockout in round 3 "Left Atomic" Sompong Wechasit, a heavy puncher from Phetchaburi. แพ้น็อกยกที่ 3 “อะตอมซ้าย” สมปอง เวชสิทธิ์ นักชกหนักจากเพชรบุรี   Defeated by knockout in round 3 "Left Atomic" Sompong Wechasit, a hard-fisted fighter from Phetchaburi. แพ้น็อกยกที่ 3 “อะตอมซ้าย” สมปอง เวชสิทธิ์ นักชกหมัดเด็ดจากเพชรบุรี   Former welterweight and middleweight boxing champion of Singapore. Who returns to wear the mongkol in Muay Thai again. ...Before the fight game, everyone thought that Suk would fight with the power of his heavy left fist. and Sompong Wechasit's expertise in the ring is not But when it came to reality, it turned out that Suk brutally attacked Sompong. Seriously There is no word of kindness. Until Sompong's mentor had to throw in the towel and surrender in the third round. ...Suk even got booed by boxing fans He said that the punch was too cruel and brutal. Thinking about killing a professional colleague (Drama, that's all) causing not many people to want to fight with Suk. And Suk found it even more difficult to find a suitable fight partner. ..Suk revealed that he had to fight like that because he was afraid. Somphong's atomic left is the same. therefore wanted to quickly put an end to the war I don't want it to drag on. Incidentally, this fight.. "Suk Prasat Hin Phimai" Receive a prize of 30,000 baht It was considered the highest in history at that time. Rest round 24: New system, easy to play, field prices, easy to start, has all the fun.                  
    • The above is a rough sketch of the triune circulations that engendered Thailand's rural Muay Thai, under the description of Peter Vail's dissertation "Violence & Control: Social and Cultural Dimensions in Thai Boxing" (1998). His dissertation captures Muay Thai just after its peak in the Golden Age (1980-1994), and focuses on the region around Khorat. what follows is just going to be some broadbrush patterning drawn from the work, and my other readings on Siamese/Thai history and that of Southeast Asia. One of the things that Peter Vail is really good at is bringing together Thailand's Muay Thai and Buddhism, especially in the production of (ideal) masculinity. In this post you can read about that nexus: Thai Masculinity: Positioning Nak Muay Between Monkhood and Nak Leng. The sketch above brings out the larger, more materialist aspects of the relationship between Buddhism and Muay Thai, the way in which Thai wats (temples) operate within the production of merit (positive spiritual karma), in parallel to how Thai kaimuay (camps) and festival fights (often on temple grounds) operate to produce earned income, through a gambling (chance-status) marketplace of fighting. These two economies flow both merit and income into the (here very simplified) subsistence economy of rice farming. Thai farming labor does not really make money, nor particularly symbolic merit, and its sons become novice monks or nak muay, just to name two options, each of which circulate in the community. Merit, social status & income flow from these into the family. And following Vail, the kaimuay-festival-fight machine produces a culturally ideal masculinity, just as the wat-machine produces spiritual capital (as well as its own idealized masculinity). Each of them supplement to the middle circulation. You can see more economic details and some graphs of the relationship between local fighting and rural subsistence, in this post:   There is another really interesting aspect that comes to the fore when you drawn back and see these three circulations side by side. Historically Siamese kingdoms drew their power largely through seasonal slave raiding warfare. Whole rural, outlying communities were captured and relocated to nearby lands where they could work as farmers and also serve in the military. There was a double sided dimension to their capture and labor that then persists, transformed, in these 3 circulations. It is as if the rural economies of Muay Thai in the 20th century expressed the much older divisions of slave and then indentured service of Siam's past. Rural farmers no longer worked for the kingdom, but rather worked to pay back loans (in patronage relationships which operated like a safety net against unsure crops), and sons (as nak muay) not only served in the national military, but also produced a warrior hypermasculinity in the art form and local fighting custom of Muay Thai. What was slavery (or a strongly indentured/corvee hierarchy) developed into a community of rural farming (with little hope for social advancement) and the art of Muay Thai festival fighting, which provided income in supplement to the farming way of life. When Slavery was abolished in Siam, by the Slavery Act R.S. 124 (1905), the Military Conscription Act came along with it, binding the newly freed young men to military service. In 1902, three years prior, religious reforms were passed against non-Thammayut Buddhism mahanikai practices – (often including magical practices). Siam sought to standardize Buddhism, but it was also working to shift political power away from regional wats and religious leaders. The Siamese wat likely carried its own largely unwritten history of Muay Thai heritage, a keeper and trainer of the technical art of Muay Thai (Boran), along side the arts of magical combat. (The history of the famed early 20th century policeman Khun Phantharakratchadet and his training at Wat Khao Aor is a very good case study). This was a potentiated martial force. Undermining the martial powers inherent in wat training, placing young men nationally under military conscription, and secularizing Muay Thai (including the formalization of Muay Boran schools and training, and its teaching in civic schools), moved trained man-power away from regional wats and the community. You can read a great account of this struggle between a central government and local religious power in "Of Buddhism and Militarism in Northern Thailand: Solving the Puzzle of the Saint Khruubaa Srivichai" (2014). For some time, after the Military Conscription Act, the main method of its legal avoidance was to become a monk. Siamese regional Buddhism and National military conscription stood at tension, as political and perhaps even to some degree martial man-powers. Several reforms worked to keep men from evading conscription via less-than-committed monkhood (for instance the institution the testing of the literacy of monks). This is only to say that the long history of Siamese Buddhism in the community, organized around the wat and the labor of village sons as novice monks, including the pedagogy of Muay Thai (Boran) lay in tension with the formation of a centralized, newly modernize Nation. When we see the circulation of sons' labor and merit in the wat, and the parallel festival fighting often under the auspices of the local wat, this is a deep rooted, historical connection. Muay Thai and the wat go together, and have gone together for perhaps much more than a century. These 3 circulations put the two in context with the 3rd of rural farming. above, the sacred cave of Wat Khao Aor near Phattalung in the South, where acolytes could undergo rites to make themselves magically invulnerable, my photograph The last provisional note I'd like to make is that in these 3 circulations you find a very ancient production. O. W. Walters, a preeminent historian of Southeast Asia takes pains to draw a picture of mainland kingdom leadership which saw the ideal masculine chief as possessing what he calls "soul stuff". This soul stuff is an animistic vital relationship to power that expresses itself spiritually and martially. 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    • In November I'll be going to Thailand for 4 weeks mostly to train and hopefully fight. Last time I went to Phuket following @Kevin von Duuglas-Ittu's incredibly helpful advice, and muay thai-wise it was everything I wanted. However, I'm looking for a bit more of a pleasant place this time, maybe a bit less noisy and crowded. I'm considering Koh Samui, but I'm not sure if it fits that description, nor do I know anything about the muay thai scene there. Has anyone here fought in Koh Samui, or knows anything about the fight opportunities there? Any gym recommendations? Right now I'm fighting mostly pro-am (semi-pro?) in the UK, so I'm not exactly a beginner, but not a pro either. I walk around at 65-70kg and have a defensive, kick-heavy style. When I went to Phuket Fight Club I had no issues finding suitable sparring and clinching partners, but I'm wondering whether there are any gyms in Koh Samui that would provide that as well. I'm also open to other location suggestions 🙂
  • The Latest From Open Topics Forum

    • Hi, this might be out of the normal topic, but I thought you all might be interested in a book-- Children of the Neon Bamboo-- that has a really cool Martial Arts instructor character who set up an early Muy Thai gym south of Miami in the 1980s. He's a really cool character who drives the plot, and there historically accurate allusions to 1980s martial arts culture. However, the main thrust is more about nostalgia and friendships.    Can we do links? Childrenoftheneonbamboo.com Children of the Neon Bamboo: B. Glynn Kimmey: 9798988054115: Amazon.com: Movies & TV      
    • Davince Resolve is a great place to start. 
    • I see that this thread is from three years ago, and I hope your journey with Muay Thai and mental health has evolved positively during this time. It's fascinating to revisit these discussions and reflect on how our understanding of such topics can grow. The connection between training and mental health is intricate, as you've pointed out. Finding the right balance between pushing yourself and self-care is a continuous learning process. If you've been exploring various avenues for managing mood-related issues over these years, you might want to revisit the topic of mental health resources. One such resource is The UK Medical Cannabis Card, which can provide insights into alternative treatments.
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    • Earlier this year I wrote a couple of sociology essays that dealt directly with Muay Thai, drawing on Sylvie's journalism and discussions on the podcast to do so. I thought I'd put them up here in case they were of any interest, rather than locking them away with the intention to perfectly rewrite them 'some day'. There's not really many novel insights of my own, rather it's more just pulling together existing literature with some of the von Duuglus-Ittu's work, which I think is criminally underutilised in academic discussions of MT. The first, 'Some meanings of muay' was written for an ideology/sosciology of knowledge paper, and is an overly long, somewhat grindy attempt to give a combined historical, institutional, and situated study of major cultural meanings of Muay Thai as a form of strength. The second paper, 'the fighter's heart' was written for a qualitative analysis course, and makes extensive use of interviews and podcast discussions to talk about some ways in which the gendered/sexed body is described/deployed within Muay Thai. There's plenty of issues with both, and they're not what I'd write today, and I'm learning to realise that's fine! some meanings of muay.docx The fighter's heart.docx
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