Muay Thai is such a fun, challenging, rewarding sport to be involved in. You meet so many amazing people from all different ages and genders that just love to train hard to compete as a fighter. You also meet the people that love the sport, train hard but have no intention of competing as a fighter. Here i talk to a couple of people that love Muay Thai but dont fight just to show you that you dont have to be a fighter to have fun and train. Everyone should be able to enjoy our beautiful art 🙂
1. How long have you been training Muay Thai and why did you start?
– I started Muay Thai in 2011, at my first MMA gym, Gunns MMA. I have a varied background in combat sports having first learnt Kickboxing then transitioning to other styles – Kung Fu, Tai Chi, boxing and MMA. As Muay Thai is one of the styles used in MMA it was a natural fit as I love stand up striking and I fell in love with it immediately. My first Kru Elijah Johnson was very encouraging and really helped me get a good start in Muay Thai. The Muay Thai coaches at UKG (Mariusz Slowinski, Josh Palmer & Gyp Tessier) are awesome, I love training there.
– I would like to have had the opportunity to fight but a few years ago I was diagnosed with a thinning retina which means it will get detached very easily from head trauma. I was told I shouldn’t even be sparring but I get around this by evading head shots (not always successfully!) and if I do get hit hard I will let my sparring partners know about my eye problem and to go a bit easier.
3. Most people train to become a fighter, why do you train?
– I love being fit, strong and active and I’m always looking to improve my techniques and learn new skills. I love martial arts and fully intend to continue with it for the rest of my life! I do Muay Thai because I find it really challenges you way beyond your comfort zone (like most martial arts) and it’s a beautiful sport. People find it strange when I say Muay Thai is beautiful as it’s so violent but if you love it you will understand what I mean.
– I have trained with fighters and non fighters throughout my martial arts life. I love training with fighters because I like to watch them and learn from them, from their skills and their mindset. I have a huge amount of respect for everyone I train with, regardless of their background. When I trained at Gunns MMA we would do shark tanks with fighters to help them prepare for their upcoming bouts. The fighters would have to spar numerous rounds with various people in training non stop. They would be in a cage and every 3 minutes they would get a new person going in the cage with them whilst the previous opponent leaves. As you are simulating fight situations you will go a lot harder than usual sparring and it is not only really challenging and tough for the fighter but also for the other students helping them to prepare.5. As a non fighter what type of goals do you set for your self to keep interested and motivated?
– I make an annual trip to Thailand to train at Sinbi. It’s one of the highlights of my year and I do it so I can refine my technique and learn new skills. There is no better place to learn Muay Thai than to do it in the motherland. In addition to martial arts I also box, lift weights, conditioning, yoga and Pilates. My training schedule keeps me busy!
6. Do you feel pressure from people because you dont fight? how do you deal with it?
– I don’t feel pressure. I get asked quite often if I fight, especially during training. I’m honoured to be asked! I have had a few heated discussions with people about why I bother to train if I don’t fight. I find that a very narrow minded view, people should be free to train how they want because at the end of the day we are training for our own goals and reasons, not to fulfill someone else’s idea of what they think you should be doing.
7. Do you do any other type of Muay Thai related activity’s, Blog, Facebook group, Gym, Videos etc?
– I write a blog (rosiecuppatea.wordpress.com) which is about my training life, it covers all aspects of my training, not just martial arts. I recently started writing for a martial arts website called Moosin.net. They invited me to join their team after reading one of my blogs where I wrote about a couple of discussions I had with guys who said people who train and don’t fight are wasting their time. I was so mad I smashed out a blog about it and that led to me being contacted by Moosin to join their team of writers as they wanted to cover more different styles, they were particularly interested in my Muay Thai experience.
8. How do you think Muay Thai has helped you in Life in general?
– I had a fantastic foundation in martial arts from my Sifu Chris Crudelli when I learnt Kung Fu. Chris really helped me learn the importance of discipline, honour and respect and how to push yourself in training and remain humble. I no longer do Kung Fu and so Muay Thai has carried on that experience for me. I have met many awesome people through my love of Muay Thai, both back at home in London and in Thailand. I am grateful to everyone who has helped me and enabled me to continue learning and doing what I love. Muay Thai also helped me get my writing gig for Moosin. 🙂
9. Any advise for people wanting to train hard and get the skills but not want to fight?
– Keep an open mind and always be respectful to your trainers and your fellow students.
No matter how long you have been training you should always remain humble, you can learn something from everyone no matter how long they have been practising. Also be patient, don’t beat yourself up if you don’t pick up the techniques right away. Some things you will get instantly, some things may take weeks, months or even years to perfect. Never stop learning, the moment you think you know everything you will actually have learnt nothing. Don’t be afraid to ask for help and if someone corrects you be thankful they have taken the time to show you, don’t be offended if someone tweaks your technique. Enjoy the journey!
1. How long have you been training Muay Thai and why did you start? Started training about 6 years ago after watching Evo on Fox and I thought Yeh that looks easy
2. Have you ever thought about becoming a fighter or had the urge? why or why not? Yeh I’ve “trained to fight” a few times in my life but the dedication it takes to get there is something I didn’t quite have… maybe if I was younger I would of stepped in the ring but who knows. I always found an excuse, got side tracked or injured along the way and before I knew it I’d hadn’t trained in a month and was unfit. ..
3. Most people train to become a fighter, why do you train? Due to WOTM I don’t get much time to train these days.. but I force myself to go occasionally just to keep the passion alive.. it’s easy to forget the high one experiences after a good solid session. And of course the fitness. Running and going to fitness first bores the shit out of me. Sparring or pads is fun
4. Do you train with fighters? Do you enjoy it or prefer to train with non fighters?Yeh I like to train with fighters or guys that train hard… being a non fighter I don’t care too much for drills and cardio, I’d prefer to just spar, clinch or kick shit!
5. As a non fighter what type of goals do you set for your self to keep interested and motivated? Sometimes I feel like I need to lock in a fight as I know I’d train way harder and be healthier. It’s easier to lose interest in training when you don’t have a goal… but my goal and passion is WOTM
6. Do you feel pressure from people because you dont fight? how do you deal with it? Na I’m happy to say I don’t fight or have any interest in fighting. I’ve heard it a hundred times from people “you should fight” “so when you having your first fight” or the thais version “you fight tonight ok?”…….. I can imagine it could be hard for younger people to be pressured into fighting, but from what I’ve seen that’s probably a good thing. I’ve never seen someone come out of their first fight and not start planning their 2nd
7. Do you do any other type or Muay Thai related activity’s, Blog, Facebook group, Gym, Videos etc? When I saw the dedication, respect and all that jazz that goes with Muay Thai I started filming Muay Thai as filmmaking is my number 1 passion… I run WOTM, a Muay Thai TV series and Facebook page www.MuayThaiWOTM.com
9. Any advise for people wanting to train hard and get the skills but not want to fight? Do what you want to do.. If you have a reason you don’t want to fight than don’t…. just because all your training partners want to fight doesn’t mean you have too… it’s your life. 6 years later I have no regrets of not fighting. I’m actually quite happy not fighting, especially whilst my mates are cutting weight.