Friday, January 16, 2009

Teaching Muay Thai

Tonight was the first of a number of taster sessions I will helping teach in secondary schools around Angus. We had a healthy turnout, 15 people and all were guys. We ran them through a generic warm up, some stretching and then explained what Muay Thai was and why it was different to other martial arts like karate and kickboxing. There were a few guys who attended kickboxing classes at the school in Forfar so they understood that kickboxing started in the 70's in America and Japan but didn't know that kickboxing came about as a way to compete with the Thais who have over 2000 years of development behind their art!

We showed them the correct stance and movement for Muay Thai. Once that had been done, we gave out pads and gloves and showed how to jab and cross, and how to put the two together in a jab-cross combination. Next we explained the technique behind a straight knee with a demonstration. My knees are one of my strong points so the kids were suitably impressed! They got to try it out on the pads and to be fair, they all picked up the techniques quite quickly, aside from the guard staying up which is either them being quick learners or Colin and I being good teachers. I'd like to think it was a bit of both.

We then demonstrated the standard Thai round kick and how to gauge and work within your distance. We explained the turning, twisting your hip and making contact with your shin and not your foot. The kickboxing lads did tend to flick their kicks and bounce a bit but they were really enthusiastic and totally up for learning how to do things our way. I did explain a few times that we weren't trying to say what they were taught was wrong and we did everything right, that it was just a different way of doing things but they were all happy to learn something different while using the skills they had already learned at kickboxing.

We finished the hour off with some basic self defence and explaining why you might throw someone rather than just knee them in the balls! We will be heading to Forfar for another hour session next Friday then I think we're at Webster High for two weeks. There were a lot of enthusiastic guys today who are already interested in leaving kickboxing to come to Arbroath and train with us, and the guys who had never done anything before were just as keen to learn from us and head though to Arbroath with the other lads who are already arranging which buses to get to and from our classes on Tuesdays and Thursdays which is encouraging.

I really enjoyed teaching tonight and I'm reinforcing things which I had almost forgotten how to do. Explaining how to stand and move properly, for example is something I've not done much of since I'd been training for my fight for a while and before that there wasn't any new students to teach. Colin is enthusiastic about helping me become an instructor, telling me that he can see I have great communications skills and I can explain technical aspect in a way that people can understand easily. I feel like I have a good enough knowledge of Thai boxing to teach people comfortably and I also feel that I could answer most queries a beginner would ask. With more advanced students, I am lacking a bit of conviction and confidence because at a certain point the techniques become opinion rather than rule, with each camp doing things slightly differently but I'm sure this will come with time.

Today was a good day. :)
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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi Nice Blog . I don't really know a lot about Knee or art, but that's just my 2 cents. Really great job though, Krudman! Keep up the good work!