This is a deceptively simple way to close distance. I get interesting communication from readers and fans. When it’s brief, I’ll answer directly. Mostly I try to get folks to post their questions on the Muay Thai Roundtable forum so it can help others who might have the same questions and more people can chime in to help with answers; but in this case the question was one I’ve not only worked hard to develop a strategy on, as a smaller fighter, but it’s also one that I’ve heard a few times. So it makes sense to do a Sylvie’s
The Sylvie’s Tips articles are little Muay Thai techniques I’ve picked up under the various trainers and training contexts I’ve been in during my years in Thailand. Many of them are just small things, like how to straighten out a punch, or practice a part of a kick, adjustments that can be made on your own. In Thailand there is a lot of time spent fine tuning your Muay Thai on the bag or in shadow and so hopefully these technical differences can make a difference for you.
a cross position and slash motion on the arm swing The Muay Thai Kick Arm Swing Angle One of the things you learn when you come to Thailand longer term is that there are many, many ways of doing something. You may have learned that there is “one” way, or been corrected away from a “wrong” way, and this is not necessarily a bad thing, but technique in Thailand is developed somewhat individually, over a long period of time, influenced by different styles and elements from trainers. It is not uncommon to be corrected in different directions by different trainers,
Above is a little video of how I wrap my hands. I think it’s good to experiment with different kinds of wrap techniques as they have different strengths. It took me a while to settle on this one. Hand size, punching style, the wrap material itself can make a difference – I’ve been liking the longer, softer wraps of Top King and Punish (an Australian company). This wrap technique incorporates an extra padded layer made of a fold of the wrap placed on the knuckles first (for torn up skin, I’ve actually added a cut kitchen sponge for a few
“Play Knees” – Sylvie’s Tips video above The other day I put up a video of “play knees,” bagwork that Muay Thai legend Sakmongkol taught me at WKO, here in Pattaya. He was displeased with me merely doing counted, repetition knee drills, the traditional Muay Thai camp endless knees on the bag that everyone knows. (These are still good and useful, by the way, just for stamina.) He wanted me to do play knees, to move the bag around in fight simulation action and energy. It was something I’ve never seen before, but I did my best to adopt it.
n Sylvie’s Tips I try to capture on video various small techniques that I run into while training. The way that it happens in Thailand, things are seldom taught to you in the form of formal instruction, rather they come up suddenly in training and then are gone. I’m pretty shy, so it’s hard actually go around and request these things; I don’t want to stop everyone and have them repeat things for the camera. In this case though we arrived at O. Meekhun gym to find organized instruction being given to Phetjee Jaa and one of the boys named
This is a quick Sylvie’s Tips on something I’ve rediscovered for my training. The main tip actually comes from when I trained with the great Kaensak Sor. Ploenjit at AMA in New Jersey several years ago. He would have me get close to and kick the wall, instead of a bag or a pad, in order to force my whole shin to line up in a parallel fashion (perpendicular to the extended kick angle some use striking the side of a target, and not the 45 degree landing angle that is common, instead flat against the target, knee bent). It
This above is a little video help to Benjamin who wrote me about a basic problem he was having in sparring. It seemed like the best way to answer him was in a quick video. I try to help people who write in to me as best I can. Once I filmed it I realized that this is something a lot of others are probably having issues with. I know I still run into it after 3 years here, so I thought to turn it into a “Sylvie’s Tips” video. Hopefully it helps others. Benjamin asked about how his knee
Just a little bagwork drill/game that I ran into in the gym by one of my favorite young fighters, Jatukam. Jatukam is 14 or 15 years old and just crushes his competition at Lumpinee and Rajadamnern. He’s one of the best fighters at 40 kg (88 lbs) and has a really clever, muay femur style, which is the tricky and evasive style mostly associated in the west with Saenchai. He’s Southpaw and has a nasty teep, but that doesn’t stop him from getting in close and smashing my face with solid left crosses when we spar. He’ll smile the