Without a Thinking, Curious, and Discerning Mind, Muay Thai Kickboxing will always allude you. Effort is Not Enough.
When training Muay Thai or Kickboxing for that matter, it can be confusing as hell – There’s a million different techniques that every teacher and instructor will throw on you with good intention, but just straight up confuses you. As a Muay Thai practitioner, it can be discouraging and lead to people ending up quitting. Even good intentioned friends will throw new tips and kickboxing tricks, confusing you even more, leading to many people eventually quitting because they think they just can’t do it.
Muay Thai will become simple for you…if and only if you do this one thing
Contrary to what many people may tell you, it is my belief that Muay Thai Kickboxing is actually simple to understand! That’s right….I said it! Here me out…Look at all the top level fighters in Thailand…the one thing that I think distinguishes most foreign and Thai fighters is a sense of naturalness (and a nasty clinch game) in Thai fighters. This simply couldn’t be the case if it was some complex algorithm to the operating the art.
Simple don’t mean easy though! It’s my belief, that once you get to a certain level of proficiency, the art gets easy to understand if and only if…..You are constantly questioning and investigating to find patterns and principles of the art during your training.
80% of your results and improvement will come from Finding and Training the Principles of Muay Thai Kickboxing.
So what the hell does this mean anyway? Well, I’m sure you’ve heard of the Pareto principle..If not, basically it says 80% of results come from 20% effort. On the flip side 80% of your effort will result in only 20% of your results. This applies to Muay Thai. Here’s how.
Think of the art in sets of principles and tactics. Principles are things that NEVER change…they remain constant. Tactics are situation dependent and change according to the circumstances. All the tactics in the world will never prepare you a real fight unless the principles are in place.
Avoid Spending Your Time on the 80% of Things that don’t really matter in the Long Time and You’ll be Well On Your Way to Proficiency
For example, one common principle in Muay Thai and Kickboxing is to move, strike, and stand with the weight heavily on the balls of the feet. This NEVER changes…EVER! In Kickboxing, resting on your heels is a recipe for getting smacked on yo ass! (I just went 50 cent for a second!!!) So it makes sense, mastery of this Kickboxing principle no matter what strike or technique you practice would be critical right? (That 20% effort producing 80% results?)
Conversely, if you learn how to perform a certain counter which is effective for fighting a south-paw, who is throwing a jabbing at you, is about the same height and same arm length, and is not much faster than you…where do you think this falls in terms of that Pareto Principle (Hint: It’s the 80% effort).
In addition to Getting Better Faster than your Training Partners, You’ll Hone Your Ability to Think For Yourself – which is MORE valuable than any Kickboxing Tactic anyone put in front of You!
Learning to shuffle through the BS and find principles is the key to effective training, especially in the beginning of your martial arts journey. All of those tactics are nice, but unless you find and master those principles, this sport will always feel like a complex mystery. Think in terms of science and being a scientist to discover your own revelations and ‘breakthroughs’. It’s more rewarding, satisfying, and you’ll grow not just in Kickboxing but in your belief in your own thinking.