The above is a heat map that works as a kind of answer to the question “Who Loves Muay Thai in Thailand?” As well as a listing of the top provinces on that map. The data comes from Google search data for the Thai term มวยไทย (Muay Thai). Nothing is very surprising here because Isaan in the North-East is known as the hotbed of Muay Thai, and Chiang Mai in the North has a very vibrant Muay Thai scene. The area that westerners are least familiar with may be farther south. Interestingly, the top province is Nongbualamphu, which is where I fought my first ever televised fight a few years ago.
This picture was grabbed by my husband Kevin, as well as the time lapse video capture below. It came out of the Roundtable conversation on whether Muay Thai was growing in popularity in the world. He suggests that what is being shown in the video is really the spread of internet access and the growth of mobile to the outlying provinces, where Muay Thai has it’s deepest fan base. I’ve not fought in the South yet – though I’d really love to – but I’ve a lot in the North and about 15 times in Isaan.
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