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Muay Thai is a combat sport from Thailand which is also known as the art of eight limbs because of the combined use of fists, elbows, knees, and shins. Good moves are categorized by full body contact which make the techniques more efficient. The eight points of the body mimic the weapons and equipment of war – the hands act as the sword and dagger, the shins and forearms act as the shields, the legs and knees become the axe and the staff, and the elbows become a hammer.
Basically, the techniques are divided into two groups – mae mai (major techniques) and luk mai (minor techniques). The techniques which make use of full body movement are considered more favorable and used much more extensively in contemporary fighting circles.
Muay Thai may seem like an extreme form of fighting but people who learn it experience many physical as well as mental benefits. The sport requires one to possess athletic flexibility and strength which makes learning Muay Thai very beneficial for the health. The major benefits associated with the sport are:
Muay Thai is a sport which involves both aerobic as well as anaerobic exercises which puts a lot of stress on the body's cardiopulmonary systems.
Through regular practice, the body gets used to the stress and starts adapting to the increasing demands of the workout.
This conditions the cardiovascular performance of the body.
Muay Thai puts a lot of emphasis on kicks and has several types of kicks as a part of its general exercise routine.
By learning how to perform various leg movements, a person is able to improve the strength of their legs.
You will notice stable improvement in the force your kicks produce, your agility, as well as endurance of your leg muscles through regular Muay Thai practice.
Muay Thai moves are rotational in nature which helps strengthen the muscles in your upper body.
A person who practices Muay Thai on a regular basis will find that the muscles in their trunk as well as abdomen will get stronger and more flexible.
Muay Thai is a very fast paced sport and demands that the player remain focused on the task at hand – hitting the opponent!
Defending yourself, hitting the opponent, practicing a new move etc. forces you to focus on the game and forget all the stress for a while.
The sport helps the player detach from the regular stress and feel more free.
Muay Thai can be intense and require the athlete to acquire numerous physical traits before they learn the main techniques. One should raise the fitness levels of their body to a high level before they can learn the moves of Muay Thai.