Tag Archives: Muay Thai

Why Kick High If You Can Kick Low?

I know that well executed high kicks can get people’s attention and admiration. When competing in certain styles such as Tae Kwon Do, Karate etc.  that’s how you get the points, right?! I also know they have their justification, so just hear me out.

Speaking from my personal experience, it’s very exhilarating to execute a yodan-kizami-zuki (upper jab), a chudan-gyaku-zuki (cross to solar plexus) and then finalize with a yodan-mawashi-geri (upper roundhouse kick) to an opponent’s temple. Hmm, was just strolling down memory lane.  Yeah, baby (was supposed to sound like Austin Powers!).

Now, many years later, for me the first two techniques no problem. The final mawashi geri to the what? Let’s get real, will ya? I am not 20 anymore, so I will simply adapt to circumstances which means I am going apply a Muay Thai round kick to my not so friendly opponent’s upper thigh by using my shin.

Listen up, even without going to the gym or dojo for years and years most people can acquire the skills for this kick fairly quickly. I also believe it’s a pretty neat self-defense technique for women. We all know that legs are more powerful than arms. So let’s just put that knowledge to work in our favor.

This combination and especially the final technique is really fast and really effective. Really!

To give you a better idea of what it looks like, check out this clip and try it. You’re gonna like it.

The Legendary Samart Payakaroon And Fighting Smart

It’s been some time since my last post. Things have been crazy busy and I hope you guys are doing well.

I have been wanting to write about a former Muay Thai and Western boxing champion for the longest time and today seems the best day to do just that.

He’s been referred to as the Muay Thai equivalent of Muhammad Ali. In some circles even as the Bruce Lee of boxing. If you have never seen him fight before, then you’re in for a treat right after the end of this post. Just stay with me, alright?!

Samart Payakaroon was born Samart Thipthamai on December 5, 1962 in the Chachoengsao Province, Eastern Thailand. Samart is considered a Muay Thai legend, having amassed a jaw-dropping career record of 129 wins and only 19 losses and 2 draws in different weight classes. But Samart didn’t call it a day after dominating the Muay Thai ring for years. He went on to become a WBC World Champion in the 57 kg weight class.

He started his training with his older brother Manus at their family’s home. His official M.T. career started under Petaronsiminit and he then transferred to Camp Sityodthong to train under Master Yodthong at the age of 12.

His entry weight was 35 kg and at the end of his Muay Thai career Samart fought in the 57 kg weight class.

Samart was the Lumpinee Stadium Champion in 4 different weight classes in 1980 and 1981.

Lumpinee Stadium is THE modern symbol of Muay Thai. It is an indoor arena with a seating capacity of close to 10,000 and is run by the Royal Thai Army. Security is managed by armed Military Police officers.
And yes, gambling is part of the deal at this venue.

Interesting fact about Samart is how technical his fighting style was. Instead of simply standing in front of his opponents and duking it out, he would manage the ring extensively and create openings to wreak painful havoc.

You can imagine that as an accomplished Muay Thai competitor Samart’s kicking abilities were nothing short of extraordinary, but just as impressive was his striking arsenal which created a boxing career after he ended his Muay Thai tenure.

In 3 years from starting his boxing career in 1982, Samart had a fighting record of 11-0 which gave him a shot at the WBC Super Bantamweight title. With a K.O. against Lupe Pintor he became Thailand’s 10th world champion.

Samart ended his professional boxing career with an impressive 21-2 record.

According to latest information, Samart teaches at his very own camp, at the Poptheeratham Gym.

And he doesn’t stop there. Throughout the years, Samart has created a name for himself in the entertainment industry by acting and singing in numerous productions.

But let’s have a look at what he is most famous for.

By the way, if you don’t enjoy the music, just turn down/off the sound, just like I did. Haha.

Can Autism Be Overcome By Martial Arts? Just Ask Monique Sciberras.

I’m not sure when I first heard about autism. I’m not even sure that I had even heard about it  before watching the Oscar-winning movie “Rain Man” starring Dustin Hoffman and Tom Cruise way back in 1988.

I guess you can say that autism got quite a bit of exposure through the film and Dustin Hoffman’s character, Raymond Babbitt.

Autism is a disorder of neural development. It is characterized by impaired social interaction and communication, and by restricted and repetitive behavior.

According to studies, these signs all begin before a child is three years old.

Autism affects information processing in the brain by altering how nerve cells and their synapses connect and organize; how this occurs is not well understood.

Autism has a strong genetic basis. In some cases, autism is strongly associated with agents that cause birth defects.

It is controversial when it comes to proposed environmental causes, such as heavy metals, pesticides or childhood vaccines.

The global prevalence of autism is about 1–2 per 1,000 people, however, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports approx. 9 per 1,000 children in the United States. The number of people diagnosed with autism has increased dramatically since the 1980s.

And then there’s 10-year old Monique Sciberras from Australia who was diagnosed with mild autism several years ago.

According to her parents, Monique has been able to thrive through her martial arts training and overcome her disability.

She has become a force to reckon with in karate, kung fu, boxing, Muay Thai and weapons.

I came across some video footage that deserves to be shared with you, wherever you may be right now:

For more about Monique Sciberras, click here.

Akshay Kumar Gets Serious About Martial Arts Training In Indian Schools

Akshay Who?

Akshay Kumar is frequently referred to as the Indian Jackie Chan. He has starred in over 100 Indian movies and has made a name for himself as the go-to guy for dangerous stunts in numerous Bollywood productions.

After obtaining Taekwondo black belt status in India, he travelled to Thailand to study Muay Thai.

Upon his return to Mumbai, India, he began teaching martial arts. One of his students, who just so happened to be a photographer, advised him to give it a shot at modelling.

For only two hours of  posing in front of the camera, Kumar got Rs. 5,000, which looked pretty good, considering he previously made Rs. 4,000 a month. After just several months of modelling, he was given the lead role in a major movie.

After 20 years of acting and producing, big-time Indian movie celebrity with nationwide recognition, Kumar Akshay is now making a case for introducing martial arts training and education in schools all across India.

 In Kumar’s opinion, schools should train kids enough to protect themselves and to deter other forms of danger when India demands it.

Akshay Kumar, who also hosts the Inidan version of Fear Factor which is a stunt based reality show, has announced he would even speak to top ministers and bureaucrats on this topic.

He is taking his own first steps to making his idea a reality: Kumar is using his own money by putting in place an annual karate competition.

I will keep you posted as soon as I learn of any developments in this regard.

All in favor of Akshay Kumar’s push for martial arts training in schools, say ‘aye’.

Girl Power Expressed Through Karate Kata Perfection

If you have been following this blog lately you probably have noticed that I like to mix things up between different martial arts styles such as Muay Thai, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu aka BJJ aka Gracie Jiu-Jitsu, Western Boxing, Jeet Kune Do, Wing Chun Kung Fu, just to name a few.

Today, I’m in the mood for some really impressive Karate moves. The kind of moves you see when true artists are at work or better performing a kata.

For those of you not familiar with kata, here a short description:

Kata is a Japanese word for choreographed patterns of movements that can be performed either solo or in pairs or even groups.

Kata is commonly known in the Japanese martial arts such as Aikido, Judo, Karate, Iaido and others.

You come across patterns of movements in other non-Japanese martial arts such as Tai Chi Chuan and Taekwondo. They just use Chinese and Korean words instead.

To get a better idea of what karate kata perfection looks like, have a look at this video clip of the Japanese Female Kata Team competing in 2008.

Amazing! But I will let you be the judge.

You Want This Former UFC Champ In Your Corner During A Bar Fight

You want this former UFC Champ in your corner during a bar fight.

And he even speaks Dutch just in case (oranje boven!).

Deep down, we all want to speak Dutch. Just admit it! I’m just kidding.

His name is ….. drumroll, please …. the amazing Bas “El Guapo” Rutten.

Years ago he started his martial arts career over in The Netherlands with Tae Kwon Do, Oyama Karate and Muay Thai.

He can kick like a mule, so stay out of his way.

Later on he got involved in Pancrase and Ultimate Fighting. I guess you could consider Bas Rutten one of the pioneers of UFC.

After an extremely successful UFC career, this illlustrious Mixed Martial Artist moved on to become an IFL coach and a highly sought-after fight commentator.

El Guapo is always up to some sort of crank and just loves to joke around.
Heck, he even cracked me up as a bouncer on the successful TV sitcom “The King of Queens” with Kevin James. His real life experience as a bouncer came in pretty handy.

Now, I am not entirely sure but I thought I just recently saw him in the movie “Mall Cop” again with Kevin James (who has been known to train with Randy “The Natural” Couture). I believe he plays the drill sergeant at the beginning of the movie.

It’s safe to say: You want this former UFC Champ in your corner during a bar fight.

Why? Just check out this clip (short version) and you’ll know why!

Viewer discretion is advised. This video is for informational purpose only.
Do not try any of this at home or your next bar visit!

Tell me what you think!