So it’s been an unexpected few months, our routines have been rumbled, self care has become difficult and you’re ready for some change. Thankfully, we can see the lights begin to flicker in our gyms as they get ready to open in the new way. Change is definitely afoot, the packed out weights room and cramped spin classes of the chain commercial gyms are probably a thing of the past, at least for the foreseeable future, and with it goes the accessibility of the walk in when you fancy attitude. But the best kind of discoveries happen when we go off the beaten track. There is a plethora of bespoke and motivating ways to get healthy and stay healthy. If you’re already a member of Primal Fitness, you would probably of experienced some of these from Moga, Primal Fit, Personal Training, BJJ and my personal favourite Muay Thai. As the Muay Thai Instructor at Primal Fitness Hub, I am hoping to make your route through the new age of gym culture that little bit easier. Whether you’re undecided about the sport, only interested in hitting the bag, an aspiring competitor, or somewhere in between; here are five reasons why you should make Muay Thai your staple routine at Primal Fitness Hub.
Easy for me to say considering my self proclaimed bias I hear you say! Well it’s a bit more than that. Muay Thai is saturated in culture, it’s arguably the most effective martial art and it continues to shape the competitive world, which I’m happy to discuss in depth at a later date. Muay Thai is easy to start, the eight points of contact are fairly straight forward to pick up (throw fist to the pad, for example), however the variations are limitless, no session needs to be the same and there are so many aspects to develop which are unique to each individual as you discover you’re own style. This keeps you motivated and engaged, and even with the variation you’ll find improvements in your fitness and technique after just a few short sessions.
I often adopt the term “punch bag therapy”, and for good reason. In my twenty years of experience in martial arts I’ve not met one person who hasn’t enjoyed landing a crisp shot on the bag or pad. If you have some experience, close your eyes and try to recall that time now, I’d bet you have a big grin on your face. There’s plenty of research supporting dopamine release in combat sports and Muay Thai is a perfect example. It’s a great way to switch your attention and relieve that built up pressure of the day. Active meditation at its best.
3. Mental Fortitude
Muay Thai develops your focus. The overarching skill you’ll develop is a strong relationship between body and mind, as you grow in the sport you learn how to control your body, from breathing to footwork, and it doesn’t take long to realise that getting everything to work in unison makes you better. I’ve found that this develops our resilience, problem solving and working under pressure, particularly when the fatigue kicks in.
4. Fighting Fit
How does 1000kcals per hour sound? It’s really not unheard of to achieve these numbers during a good session. With a mixture of high intensity body weight exercises and repetitive strikes that engage both aerobic and anaerobic systems it’s a great all body work out to get you in shape (Crisafulli et al 2009, if you like to read). During my sessions, either 1:1 or in our class, we’ll make sure you’re working to the right level for you, which often means starting a little slower, which is fine as the improvement rate is steep, so never be put off!
5. Self Defence
It’s worth a mention, as its commonly a reason to start any martial arts journey, as I suppose this was part of mine at the age of 12. As previously stated Muay Thai is an effective style, however I make no illusions, I teach people how to throw techniques and learn to box, I’m in no way an advocate for using what you learn outside of the gym, quite the opposite, the best self defence is simply to remove yourself from the situation. However through training, you will invariably become more confident in handling yourself, confident with managing your fight or flight response, and thinking through a situation. This goes a very long way in looking after yourself, so no doubt will really help boost your confidence!
There you have it, these are just a few benefits for starting up this great sport! Regardless of age, experience, fitness level or state of mind, Muay Thai can really help bring out the best in you. So your next step is get in contact with the team with any questions or to book your first session.