Similar in some ways to Karate, Muay Thai focuses on strikes delivered with hands, feet, elbows and knees. While the origins of Karate are so old that there is debate on whether it originated in China or Okinawa, Muay Thai is a much more recent art, first developed in the 1700’s in Thailand. Where Karate focuses primarily on punches and kicks, to the extent that elbow and knee strikes, while taught, are for the most part illegal in tournaments, Muay Thai is a ‘whole body’ combat art, although the focus is primarily on kickboxing, using hands, feet and shins to strike.
How is it Different from Kickboxing?
Often associated with kickboxing, this martial art differs in several ways, although both are foundational arts for successful MMA fighters. Both arts teach footwork, setups and evasion techniques. In addition, both focus more on offense than defense, seeking to decisively end the fight before it really begins.
There are some fundamental differences though. Where kickboxing is only a four point fighting system that teaches fist and foot strikes, Muay Thai is an eight point system which also incorporates elbows and knees. Where boxing teaches constant movement, especially of the head to evade blows, MT teaches its students to bide their time, waiting for the opponent to provide an opening before moving straight in quickly and aggressively to land a decisive strike.
How is it Different from Karate?
As already mentioned, MT is similar in many ways to Karate, but differs in the use of the ‘clinch’, a technique characterized by grabbing the back of the opponent’s neck and then using the knees to deliver punishing blows to the body or head.
If kickboxing is your thing, then Muay Thai is the art for you, however both MT and Karate are practiced by MMA fighters and both are highly effective self-defense arts. For practical self-defense you may also be interested in Jiu-Jitsu, as its ground-fighting techniques are the perfect compliment to both MT and Karate.
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We offer group classes in all four of the martial arts we teach, Karate, Muay Thai, Jiu-Jitsu and Judo. Come on out and join us! Make friends, get fit and learn to defend yourself!
Adult and Youth Classes available!
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