Muay Thai, or Thai Boxing as they call it here, is the most famous and popular type of martial arts in Thailand. Since before we left the states RG has expressed interest in taking a lesson or two while we are here. Fast forward a month and somehow I am agreeing to take said lesson with him! I’m still really not sure how this happened…I never had any interest in this sport. To be honest I think the lack of exercise was getting to me and I hesitantly agreed.
We walked up to the neighborhood gym, which is a bit rough around the edges…it is a covered boxing ring completely open-air. You need to wear bug spray or the mosquitos will get you. Young boys who box competitively are pounding the bags at any time of day and there is an elderly man, always shirtless barefoot and wearing official boxing shorts, most likely a great boxer in his day, who doesn’t speak English…yet he somehow communicates with us when we are doing something wrong. Then you have the main coach, who is strict and gets frustrated if you forget to hold your hand up or position your feet correctly…but at the same time he is very gentle and wants to teach you everything you need to know to be successful at this sport.
RG and I definitely stand out, we are two of only four non-Thai people who work out here, and we are without a doubt the least experienced. We worked out a deal, the first lesson was free and if we liked it we said we would sign on for a ten class package. I think I was tricked! The initial lesson was easy…learn how to hold your hands, punch a bag a few times, shuffle your feet and then hour was over. Now don’t get me wrong we were dripping head to toe in sweat, felt like we had a good work out and were ready to come back. But day two and three were a lot more intense…so much so that I am writing this with two bare knuckles (the skin is completely rubbed off) a black and blue elbow and a bruised shin…still not sure how that one happened.
RG has bright red knuckles and a matching bruised elbow. He can handle it though, and when he hits the boxing bags they actually move…unlike when I do and they just sway a little. Right now we have eight more classes left and paid for…I will try my best to make it to them all, but at this rate I think my body may give up on me before I get there. Stay tuned and I will try to take some more pictures of us in the ring.
*Disclaimer…I am sorry for how the pictures in this post are a bit fuzzy and blurry, I did not have my camera with me and these were taken on an older smart phone