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Home training and converting from another martial art.


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Hello everyone ! I am new to Muay Thai and I haven’t joined a gym yet but I have started training at home with video tutorials mainly for the past few months and I am really passionate about it . Yesterday I got my first pair of gloves (Yokkao Basic 14 oz) and I am really happy , so I decided to share my views from my experience so far and I also have some questions .

 

Before I decided to start MuayThai I used to do IWKA Wing Chun for 2 years. The system was not strictly traditional and consisted a mix of many Wing Chun systems and styles, implemented by Sifu Sergio after his travels and training with other Sifu in China.(I was trained by a student of Sifu Sergio.) The latest principle brought into the system by Sifu Sergio Iadarola was “detachment” in terms that you should never rely on form and other factors when fighting .The latter actually helped me in converting to Muay Thai because I had experience with a multi angle striking system and I realize that I would have a really hard time converting if I was training in a system like Ip-man Wing Chun for example. The system also consisted of exercises with tai-chi and qi-gong elements that helped me improve my balance and flexibility .

 

The reason I decided to stop learning Wing Chun was that there was no sparring and the amount of realistic drills was minimal at the levels I trained and it also seemed to me that you had to train like for 20 years to use it successfully in a street situation. At this point I have to say that my goal in martial arts is to be able to be in a good level of defending myself and others in the street . Muay Thai seemed to be more effective to me in a shorter period of training, by means that if you have a good muay thai foundation + realistic drills and sparring ,even at a basic level you could actually do some serious damage to a possible attacker . (Correct me if I am mistaken.)

 

So  far I’ve been seeing several Muay Thai videos and decided that I should build some good technique before joining a gym , that being said I would like to improve my leg flexibility in order to be able to land a higher roundhouse kick that could reach the opponent’s head and I have been doing several stretching accompanied with some ballistic stretches . Do you have in advice on how to progress at this in a safe way , avoiding possible injuries?

 

Shadowboxing is one of my priorities since I am training mostly alone , so I spend a lot of time shadowboxing using my webcam.  What kind of blocking should  I practice when shadowboxing ? I mainly check kicks and use the Dracula guard that I have seen in several videos and also slip through some punches but I seem to miss out elbow blocking (especially 180 degree elbows)   and knee blocking . Any advice on shadowboxing in general ?

 

Sometimes I am lucky enough to do padwork with a friend or my girlfriend and I am also considering to buy a bag , that would have to wait for now .
 

I would appreciate any solo training advice !

Thanks for reading , I hope that it wasn’t long and boring :P 

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I don't know, my advice would be train with a knowledgable coach who can teach you correct form before you develop bad habits that are harder to break.

 

Is there a specific reason to not go to a Muay Thai gym?

I'm also with the advice of NewThai; if you learn it on your own you have a lot of chance to learn wrong things.

A coach/trainer can watch you and guide you when needed, also training partners often redirect you and help you to learn or adjust technique.

And keep in mind that everyone is at the gym to learn and everyone was a beginner one time. Your learning curve will be much steeper if you go to a gym, I think.

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Hello again and thanks for your replies ! The main reason I haven't gone to a gym is the absence of a Muay Thai gym in the small town I'm currently living. In two months time I'm gonna return to my home town and there are some Muay Thai gyms there , however I cannot stay inactive at martial arts until that point so I try to improve at basics and search for some proper solo training before the time I get back home and join a gym .

Really cool stretch for the kicks , I have been watching Sylvie's videos and they are really helpful.

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Hello again and thanks for your replies ! The main reason I haven't gone to a gym is the absence of a Muay Thai gym in the small town I'm currently living. In two months time I'm gonna return to my home town and there are some Muay Thai gyms there , however I cannot stay inactive at martial arts until that point so I try to improve at basics and search for some proper solo training before the time I get back home and join a gym .

 

Yeah, this was a very difficult thing for Sylvie. We lived about an hour away from any Muay Thai training at all, and we didn't have much money so even the drives were expensive. We did it, but there was always the sense that we were stuck. Sylvie bought a heavy bag and a wave master and shadowed, but it wasn't ideal. This is probably the real reason why Sylvie started putting up all her training with Master K. There must be so many people in the world who just can't reach great training. This frustration grew - I wrote about the entire process of trying to overcome it here. And finally just lead to coming to Thailand for 6 weeks. And then a commitment to moving here for at least a year. When you are stuck without training it becomes a passion to get it.

That's why Sylvie shares so much stuff. She's been there, in a small town, stuck without training or training partners.

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I would try to practice your fundamental strikes, and a couple combos on a punching/heavy bag. Hopefully there is some gym in the city that you can have access to one. Maybe a second hand online community in the city you are in would have some second hand punching bags. 

If not, then I would hit up any martial arts that will increase your hip flexibilty and keep up your cardio. There is a benefit to try other martial arts :) 

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Hey Nick,

 

Shadow boxing is great. For punching, there's an option of buying/making a double-end bag. It doesn't take up much space at home and is lower-cost investment. I'm currently making one for myself. It helps with accuracy in punches.

 

Sylvie has a video where she did kicks on a wall to help with turning the hips on the kicks. It's an option to work on kicks.

 

Not being able to get to a Muay Thai gym to train is unfortunate. I've been there... But training on my own primes me for the sessions that I can get to.

 

If self defense is a priority, may I also suggest looking into krav maga techniques? They tend to be more applicable to street fights, such as facing an attacker with a knife or a gun, facing multiple attackers, fighting on unstable ground with no gloves, etc.

 

My heart is in Muay Thai and most of my time is devoted to Muay Thai. I don't enjoy my time in krav maga the way I do in Muay Thai. I would still work on krav maga techniques because of its practicality in self defense.

 

All the best with training!

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