All about Muay Thai

All about Muay Thai

Feb 11, 2023Wicked Boxing

Muay Thai, also known as Thai boxing, is a martial art that originated in Thailand several centuries ago. Because it makes use of eight points of contact namely, punches, elbows, knees and kicks in its strikes and techniques, it has been introduced also as the Art of Eight limbs. 

The history of Muay Thai can be traced historically to the Sukhothai dynasty of Thailand around the 13th century. As recorded in Thai history, the first Thai army was born out of a need to defend the kingdom and soldiers were taught both armed and unarmed combat.  

Over time, Muay Thai became a popular spectator sport in Thailand, with organized matches and tournaments held throughout the country. It also gained international recognition, with fighters from Thailand and other countries competing in events around the world. 

In the 20th century, Muay Thai underwent various changes, with the introduction of weight classes, gloves, and other safety measures. It also became more popular as a fitness activity, with gyms and training centers offering classes to people of all ages and skill levels. 

Today, Muay Thai is recognized as a national sport of Thailand and continues to grow in popularity around the world. It is widely regarded as one of the most effective and practical forms of martial arts, both for self-defense and competitive fighting. 

Commonly Used Muay Thai Techniques 


Punches are the most commonly used techniques in Muay Thai. A Muay Thai fighter uses the same punch variations used in regular boxing, which includes jab, cross, hook, and uppercuts. 


The elbow is one of the hardest parts of the human body, making them an effective weapon in Muay Thai. There are many different ways to throw an elbow: sideways to the head, from the top down, reverse to the chin, flying elbow from the top down and spinning back elbow. When executed properly, elbow strikes can knock out an opponent or inflict deep cuts that can end fights via stoppages. 


The Muay Thai kick is a devastating technique delivered via the shins. The most commonly used kicks in Muay Thai are front kick: delivered with the ball of the foot, aimed at the opponent's torso or face, and roundhouse kick: a powerful kick delivered with the shin, aimed at the opponent's ribs, legs, or head. 

Beside the standard roundhouse side kick, Muay Thai kicks can be delivered in a variety of ways such as jumping kick, spinning back kick, axe kicks (top down with heel landing on opponent’s head), and the acrobatic cartwheel kick as popularized by Muay Thai legend, Saenchai. 


Knees in Muay Thai are typically close-range weapons used during clinching. They are often thrown to the body, especially the ribcage but also on thighs and directly to the head. Jumping knee strikes can also be devastating if landed. When used effectively like other weapons of Muay Thai, knees can end fights by knockouts. 

Knees are thrown with the rear leg to generate more force. They can be thrown straight or diagonally with clinching to keep the opponent within striking distance. They can also be delivered to the opponent’s head by jumping.  


The push kick, referred to as “teep” in Muay Thai, can be used as both defensively or offensively. It can be used as a technique to keep opponents at a distance and disrupting an advance or as a strike if delivered with power and accuracy. 

There are a few ways to use the teep including the straightforward front push kick which can be delivered to the solar plexus, the lead leg, or even the face as a show of dominance. Teeps can also be thrown as a side kick with the rear leg, or jumping front kick for even more power. 


Clinching in Muay Thai is a grappling technique usually used in combination with knee and elbow strikes. Clinching is a close-range fighting style that requires many years of practice to master. Takedowns, or tripping the opponent to the ground are also allowed and performed during clinching. When used to the right effect, clinching can help fighters outscore their opponents and win fights. 

More articles