Codified Rules

Transk53

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Hey just wondering about this. I have Googled as much as I can and got this from a Wiki page. Two questions for the history buffs. Firstly, is the time frame (underlined) correct and second can anybody give a definite date. Just curious.


Divergence and Decline

The ascension of King Chulalongkorn (Rama V) to the throne in 1868 ushered in a golden age not only for muay but for all of Thailand. Muay progressed greatly during the reign of Rama V as a direct result of the king's personal interest in the art. The country was at peace and muay functioned as a means of physical exercise, self-defense, recreation and personal advancement. At least four regional styles of the art were already in existence at the time. These were Muay Thasao from the north, Muay Khorat from the east or northeast, Muay Lopburi from the central area and Muay Chaiya from the south.

During the 19th and early 20th centuries, the modern boxing ring was introduced and codified rules were put into place. These included the rules that the fighters should wear western gloves and cotton coverlets over their feet and ankles. Many of the old techniques were either banned or became impractical for the new type of matches. Around this time the term Muay Thai became commonly used for the new style while the older form was referred to as Muay Boran or ancient boxing.

Traditionally, Muay Thai masters would teach the techniques of Muay Boran to advanced students but this is not often done today. Professional boxers consider it a waste of training time for them to learn techniques that they won't be able to use in competitions and tournaments. Even in Thailand it is becoming increasingly difficult to find a school willing to teach it; they prefer to focus on "modern" Muay Thai, as this is more easily exploitable as a form of income. A number of styles and techniques have been lost. Muay Boran was not well known in the West until it was featured in the 2003 Thai film Ong Bak starring Tony Jaa. Some schools nowadays take advantage of the art's popularity by selling Muay Thai under the name of Muay Boran.
 

Kunthuk

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Thanks, that's a good post and good info.

There really are many a technique wonderful to watch but quite difficult to implement on combat, or even execute first of all. But then again, many are on the sport not to compete but learn the art and being able to defend oneself. I hope Muay Boran doesn't disappear from Thailand altogether ! At least there are several movements in which I am interested though some of them are to acrobatic for me to be able to perform them.. It's also about the very spirit of this martial art, and i think some knowledge of Muay Boran should be included in Muay Thai as a technical legacy not to be forsaken..
 
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Transk53

Transk53

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Thanks, that's a good post and good info.

There really are many a technique wonderful to watch but quite difficult to implement on combat, or even execute first of all. But then again, many are on the sport not to compete but learn the art and being able to defend oneself. I hope Muay Boran doesn't disappear from Thailand altogether ! At least there are several movements in which I am interested though some of them are to acrobatic for me to be able to perform them.. It's also about the very spirit of this martial art, and i think some knowledge of Muay Boran should be included in Muay Thai as a technical legacy not to be forsaken..

A good point. What would be included though, as Muay Boran being an umbrella of Thai MA. But as you posted in my other thread, maybe most will take up Muay Thai in Thailand just for the fitness aspect and because everybody else does kind of thing.
 

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I think that many people visit Thailand to train not really for the fitness aspect of it alone, though that certainly is a reason too, but expansive if you consider you can do fitness on your neighborhood probably, but mainly for being in love with Muay Thai somehow or another. I meant not necessarily to compete, but to leave an extraordinary experience, to improve the skills and be in contact with real Muay Thai at its craddle. But i think you are right when you point out that it is also something "in" to do.. Sure,
some people will get in there that way to and probably just give it a short try.
 
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Transk53

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I think that many people visit Thailand to train not really for the fitness aspect of it alone, though that certainly is a reason too, but expansive if you consider you can do fitness on your neighborhood probably, but mainly for being in love with Muay Thai somehow or another. I meant not necessarily to compete, but to leave an extraordinary experience, to improve the skills and be in contact with real Muay Thai at its craddle. But i think you are right when you point out that it is also something "in" to do.. Sure,
some people will get in there that way to and probably just give it a short try.

Yeah, I had a very short introduction myself, but due to other stuff, too short lived. It is difficult for a foreigner to able to go over and train as I understand it, but aside from that, the spiritual side of existence for them does appear to be quite tangible. Guess from Western ignorance, one would simply have to go. Not so much for doing some Muay Thai, but more towards the immersion in their world. Feel what it is like to be surrounded by practitioners, and get the jist, this ain't a sport to them, it their core belief from what comes the national sport. IMHO of course.
 

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Hope that little introduction was nice at least. I think as a foreigner you can choose your pace, in a sense you don't have to train twice a day, 6 days a week ! Moreover there is a different range of ages of people travelling to there to train Muay Thai. If you're lucky to be young enough, you even try to endure that hard pace.. There seem to be many guys/gals doing it, many foreigners do fight in Thailand, and to fight in Thailand you need to train the way they do. Otherwise, for somebody like me who is aged 38, really soon 39, I would rather try out once a day, 5 a week.

To immerse in their world, yes ! As you say, what it is like to be surrounded by practitioners - Nak Muay Nak Muay ? Wikip矇dia..
It's a true lifestyle in Thailand, and i think the money is worth to be payed to get a taste of that. I'm up for 3 months :sp83:

Which martial art you practice the most, which one is your favorite, in which you are better ?
 

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This is a great question and something I worked on for a long time. When I was doing my research and training in old muay and in ring muay thai, I noticed there was a huge gap in the history of ring Muay Thai. It just jumped from the bare knuckle era ended and he ring muay thai era began. But that gap is a story really unto itself.

But ring muay thai is very unique and it took a long time for it to evolve to what we see today. There were sweeping reforms but also there were considerable deaths in the old style. The evolution of ring muay thai takes about two decades to get going and then begins to really gain stride in the 1960s.

So things just didnt happen at once, there were experiments and also the building up of the rules, training the refs, figuring out things like red and blue for the fighters(originally there was a green color as well). It was a unique welding of the east and west.

The bare knuckle arts suffered tremendously when the physical education department sort of melded the arts into one program for grade school kids then sold it the gullible foreigners as muay boran(the same thing happened with Krabi krabong thus leaving behind the great old authentic masters in favor of those elevated by the phys ed departments). The authentic systems are dynamic and unique- korat is totally different in structure and delivery from chaiya as they are different from Lanna, or Ta Sao. I documented, trained in several of the old bare knuckle and weapons systems for decades now and i can say they do survive some better than others. But people don't search them out because they believe they are gone or they believe "muay boran" and the phys ed is the real deal. Once we begin to show the other arts in their real original form things will change and a battle will happen between those "selling" the wu shu/phys ed version against the authentic and original. Nothing wrong with the phys ed version as it has its place, training children in a safe environment as it was created and how it was perfected. But it is not the ways they trained.

Hopefully, when my books are done,it will shed more in-depth writings on these type of topics. But its a great question that does deserve proper treatment. It will also show how muay thai has its own evolution and path away from the ancient into the modern, something that didn't occur until decades later in Laos and Cambodia.

It will also change many of the historical battles and conversations about how Muay Thai owes something to cambodia or myanmar or another country when those arguments can only be centered on the ancient arts and you would be looking at the sword, wrestling or bare knuckle--not ring muay thai which shifted away from all of that into something very different then was emulated and duplicated by Cambodia and Laos decades later. Its been sad watching all these arguments with so little knowledge about not only the ancient arts but how the newer ones evolved.
 
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Transk53

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Hope that little introduction was nice at least. I think as a foreigner you can choose your pace, in a sense you don't have to train twice a day, 6 days a week ! Moreover there is a different range of ages of people travelling to there to train Muay Thai. If you're lucky to be young enough, you even try to endure that hard pace.. There seem to be many guys/gals doing it, many foreigners do fight in Thailand, and to fight in Thailand you need to train the way they do. Otherwise, for somebody like me who is aged 38, really soon 39, I would rather try out once a day, 5 a week.

To immerse in their world, yes ! As you say, what it is like to be surrounded by practitioners - Nak Muay Nak Muay ? Wikip矇dia..
It's a true lifestyle in Thailand, and i think the money is worth to be payed to get a taste of that. I'm up for 3 months :sp83:

Which martial art you practice the most, which one is your favorite, in which you are better ?

Sorry for the late reply. Yes thanks for the linkage, I googled a lot of that page. In terms of what is my favourite MA, can't answer that one as I do hold any rank in anyone. But yeah, boxing and kickboxing have always been personal favourites. Watching the like of Marvelous Marvin, Barry Mcguigan (two personal favourites) and many more growing up, was just awe inspiring really. Obviously I would be be attracted to anything boxing, so I like MT as well. Although sometimes I find the bouts a little slow, aside from the cultural aspect.
 
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Transk53

Transk53

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This is a great question and something I worked on for a long time. When I was doing my research and training in old muay and in ring muay thai, I noticed there was a huge gap in the history of ring Muay Thai. It just jumped from the bare knuckle era ended and he ring muay thai era began. But that gap is a story really unto itself.

But ring muay thai is very unique and it took a long time for it to evolve to what we see today. There were sweeping reforms but also there were considerable deaths in the old style. The evolution of ring muay thai takes about two decades to get going and then begins to really gain stride in the 1960s.

So things just didnt happen at once, there were experiments and also the building up of the rules, training the refs, figuring out things like red and blue for the fighters(originally there was a green color as well). It was a unique welding of the east and west.

The bare knuckle arts suffered tremendously when the physical education department sort of melded the arts into one program for grade school kids then sold it the gullible foreigners as muay boran(the same thing happened with Krabi krabong thus leaving behind the great old authentic masters in favor of those elevated by the phys ed departments). The authentic systems are dynamic and unique- korat is totally different in structure and delivery from chaiya as they are different from Lanna, or Ta Sao. I documented, trained in several of the old bare knuckle and weapons systems for decades now and i can say they do survive some better than others. But people don't search them out because they believe they are gone or they believe "muay boran" and the phys ed is the real deal. Once we begin to show the other arts in their real original form things will change and a battle will happen between those "selling" the wu shu/phys ed version against the authentic and original. Nothing wrong with the phys ed version as it has its place, training children in a safe environment as it was created and how it was perfected. But it is not the ways they trained.

Hopefully, when my books are done,it will shed more in-depth writings on these type of topics. But its a great question that does deserve proper treatment. It will also show how muay thai has its own evolution and path away from the ancient into the modern, something that didn't occur until decades later in Laos and Cambodia.

It will also change many of the historical battles and conversations about how Muay Thai owes something to cambodia or myanmar or another country when those arguments can only be centered on the ancient arts and you would be looking at the sword, wrestling or bare knuckle--not ring muay thai which shifted away from all of that into something very different then was emulated and duplicated by Cambodia and Laos decades later. Its been sad watching all these arguments with so little knowledge about not only the ancient arts but how the newer ones evolved.

I would certainly look forward to that. It was a little as the 60's before coming what I guess is now the recognised format, would have thought it was earlier. Picking up on the foreigners going over, that must change dynamics of a bout. Would think that Thai conditioning would be higher verses Western standards.I know and have read things about foreigners going over to train, so I guess that is what instructors have to do?
 

blackdiamondcobra

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I meant the sixties where you saw it starting to become popular and really starting to develop dynamic champions with unique styles. But i guess in the 50s you had that as well with the art coming together more smoothly. I would say that because mostly it was bare knuckle fighters transitioning into a new art and learning the rules and how to train it during the 30s and 40s then you have World War 2 and then the influences of physical education programs etc. Foreigners mostly lost in early competitions with the Thais because they weren't used to the low kicks, elbows, clinching or the extensive conditioning only after they adopted the training methods and started using the techniques in their arsenal or adding to techniques to work around it did they begin to win against it. I lived in a camp that was split western boxing and muay thai as i have an extensive and deep western boxing background in addition to my martial arts and I found the camp to be excellent and progressive in their training methods and produced numerous champs in both disciplines but in the West we have developed things further and refined training more scientifically in recent decades. I don't know if they will adopt more scientific training methods in the future as I am curious during my next visit to see how the Olympic Boxing team is doing and how they are training and what methods they are using. I was just in Myanmar finishing my documentary on their bare knuckle system and they adopted thai training methods with thai pads, belly pads, structured their training routines the same way whereas in years before it wasn't that way at all. I checked the Myanmar Olympic team but they were just rebuilding the Boxing and Wrestling teams from scratch. The wrestling team was using more modern refined training principles so maybe those will bleed over and influence the progression of the sport. Muay Thai really exists within they own universal and thats how they support their camps. They sort of stuck to what works for all this time because it works within the confines of becoming champion on their home turf and the method was duplicated by other surrounding countries with much success so it remained so.
 
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Transk53

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I meant the sixties where you saw it starting to become popular and really starting to develop dynamic champions with unique styles. But i guess in the 50s you had that as well with the art coming together more smoothly. I would say that because mostly it was bare knuckle fighters transitioning into a new art and learning the rules and how to train it during the 30s and 40s then you have World War 2 and then the influences of physical education programs etc. Foreigners mostly lost in early competitions with the Thais because they weren't used to the low kicks, elbows, clinching or the extensive conditioning only after they adopted the training methods and started using the techniques in their arsenal or adding to techniques to work around it did they begin to win against it. I lived in a camp that was split western boxing and muay thai as i have an extensive and deep western boxing background in addition to my martial arts and I found the camp to be excellent and progressive in their training methods and produced numerous champs in both disciplines but in the West we have developed things further and refined training more scientifically in recent decades. I don't know if they will adopt more scientific training methods in the future as I am curious during my next visit to see how the Olympic Boxing team is doing and how they are training and what methods they are using. I was just in Myanmar finishing my documentary on their bare knuckle system and they adopted thai training methods with thai pads, belly pads, structured their training routines the same way whereas in years before it wasn't that way at all. I checked the Myanmar Olympic team but they were just rebuilding the Boxing and Wrestling teams from scratch. The wrestling team was using more modern refined training principles so maybe those will bleed over and influence the progression of the sport. Muay Thai really exists within they own universal and thats how they support their camps. They sort of stuck to what works for all this time because it works within the confines of becoming champion on their home turf and the method was duplicated by other surrounding countries with much success so it remained so.

Yeah I was thinking of the low kicks when I posted. I would ask you to bare with me here, I consistently fail to make my point from my end. What preceded the post was that I was watching a vid from a Facebook link. Muay Thai Authority I believe. Two IC fighters that used more boxing, well it looked that way. Would there be a tangible difference in skill set, or would it be just style. I will attempt to get the linkage, will probably make more sense.
 

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