Muay thai gym
I just recently joined a muay thai/kickboxing/boxing gym a few weeks ago and noticed that it was different than my cousin's muay thai gym. My cousin's gym has set classes at certain hours of the day and they go over a few drills/techniques and work on some conditioning and stretching. My gym, on the other hand, is open in the afternoons and we can come in whenever and whatever time we want. My trainer started me off hitting the speed and heavy bags and doing some conditioning such as jumping rope and bicycling. I've hit the pads twice. To sum things up, it seems as if we just go in there and do whatever we want. Now my question is, is this way of training as effective as my friend's gym. Am I supposed to bug my trainer or something? My trainer does have a good reputation and everyone seems to recommend him. Am I not being patient enough? Help!
Gym details? Location? Website?
How long have you been training there?
This place sounds great for experienced people to sharpen their skills with a good coach, but if you want actual training then you should bring it up with the coach. maybe he can find somebody to work with you, or recommend a place where you can get more regimented training.
Last edited by Neildo; 8/17/2007 5:14pm at .
My $0.02. This is not gospel. Take it for what it's worth.
Training in a formal class setting is important. Especially when you're first starting out. Learn some drills under instructor supervision, learn how to hit and hold focus mitts and Thai pads, and work with several different people of different sizes, shapes, and experience levels. Those are the most important lessons to learn early in your training, and a class setting is very conductive to learning them.
Solo and partnered training is important too, but it can wait until after you've acquired the basic skills you need from class-based training.
I spend about half my training time in each. I arrive at the gym about an hour or so before class starts, do a bit of stretching, then grab whoever looks like they're not busy and do some partner drills, padwork, and/or light sparring. Then when class starts, I jump in and do 1:30 of instructor-led activities. After class, I do some solo bagwork or shin conditioning.
I dunno... If the gym you're at works for you, more power to you, but I'm pretty sure I wouldn't be as happy there as a gym with a more formal class-based training program.
ThaiBoxerShorts has it right--you have to learn the basics and have some conditioning before you start engaging in partner training or sparring. Despite what you may have seen in some of the posts on this website, no beginner starts "hardcore sparring" on day 1 at a reputable dojo. You have to crawl before you can walk.
The biking/jump rope? That's ok if the instructor is using it as a warm-up, but if the entire session is you on a LifeCycle, you're wasting your money. You went to learn Muay Thai, not how to ride a stationary bike. You can do that at any gym or on your own bicycle.
If you're going to a place where you just "do what you want", you aren't at a martial arts dojo--you're in a glorified gym/Fight Club. Do you have a lot of "tough guys" walking around in Sprawl shorts challenging everyone to "spar"? If so, that's a bad sign.
When I was 11, my stepfather enrolled me in a boxing gym that worked just like that. After getting beat up several times without learning much (besides how to cover up and be a more interesting punching bag to the kids the trainer thought "had potential"), I was so put off by martial arts that I ignored it as chop-socky Hollywood bullshit for over a decade. Let my loss be your gain--find a good trainer right away, using the "how to find a good school" page on this site.
my .02 cents is that the last two comments about needing to learn in a class setting is bogus. Confront your coach or one of the trainers in the gym about your goals, have them hold pads for you and see what you can do to train with the fighters at the gym.
Back in Nashville I did some training with the women's amateur boxing team. At their gym they had classes for people that just wanted to come in and train as a hobby, get in shape, whatever and then there was the actual boxing team training which was at an entirely different time of day and was comprised of mostly entirely different drills. The boxing team was made up of girls ranging in experience from those who'd been fighting for years and training for nearly a decade to total beginners. The fight team's training was comprised entirely of conditioning, sparring drills, and sparring.
As for the training I do, mostly I train on my own or with Kat and I join the classes just so I can get some sparring time in with a range of different people. Classes are fine as an introduction to the basics of fight training, but you shouldn't feel they're THE most important thing to prepare you.
Depends on your goals, background, and ability. The gym referenced by the OP is more akin to the average MT gym I've seen, mostly for intermediate to upper level fighters. It's an open atmosphere where you can get coaching if you ask, but in large part, is more for personal preparation. Classes are for Cardio kickboxing. Instruction as a group in basics, though, can be useful, for all of about 3 months at most. Thai kickboxing simply isn't a group endeavour, more of a personal coaching thing. You need someone who is watching you to see if your hooks, roundhouses, etc. are all clean and technical. You don't need some schmucks to the left and right of you who are weekend kickboxers with sloppy technique impeding your progress.
That said, ask for help with your basics and if no one can help you, evaluate whether you want to continue paying for an open gym environment and/or whether you need more personal instruction. If you're new to MT, do both. It'll help you in the long run to have a personal instructor and open gym time to work on conditioning and trouble spots.
I understand the idea of being able to train by yourself and with an experienced partner alone, but I've been doing Muay Thai for a year now and my style's more like ThaiBoxerShorts.
I arrive usually very early to stretch, do bag drills, and light sparring; next, I follow whatever my instructor has the rest of the class do. Our instructors pay enough attention to us when we're working in a group that I feel I benefit from their advice.
I dislike that setup now that I've been in MT for awhile. Really, after the first year, I felt a bit stifled by having a trainer looking over my shoulder. It's all well and good when I'm not throwing hooks correctly, or not working my routines with enough dedication to my round count, but now? I'd feel downright antsy having someone calling out basic technique. That's why most MAs offer beginner and upper level courses, distinct from one another, and MT should be no different. Although, the difference would be that you've only got a handful of techniques, so upper level training would be more freeform, less class and more one-on-one as needed.
Don't get me wrong, I welcome critique, and I think everyone needs someone to teach them, but after a couple years, it can make you "claustrophobic" to have someone perched on your shoulder every minute, and it can feel very slow and banal to have to sit in a "class" where n00bs are still learning how to throw a jab.
The responses in this thread have all been pretty good. I think it's fair to say that it comes down to personal preference. I agree that as you gain experience, independent training (whether partnered or solo) becomes more important while class-based training becomes less important.
But I still like classes for a couple of reasons. They give me an opportunity to work with a greater variety of people, whereas typically only a small handful of people are interested in working partnered drills during open gym. Granted, the ones who like to work independently of class tend to be better -- much better -- than the ones who only do class, but I still like the larger variety of training partners that a class setting provides. And while it can be frustrating to get stuck with a newbie who can't even throw a jab, teaching them how to throw a jab correctly can give you insights for improving your own technique.
Independent training is ultimately more important. I'll agree with that. It's the meat-and-potatoes of a good training regimen. But class-based training has its place.
Last edited by ThaiBoxerShorts; 8/18/2007 10:10pm at .
I didn't read any of the other posts, but, if your trainer has a good reputation among people whose opinion actually matters (I.E. people who fight, have trained a long time, actually know something about muay thai etc.), I would give it a chance. Assuming this is the first gym you have ever trained at, then you really don't know anything yet. Muay Thai gyms don't have a reputation for bullshido, so I would not be worried. You can always check out your friend's gym, and if you like it better, then you can always switch.
Originally Posted by fighterdoc
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