Is Muay Thai boxing identical to normal boxing?

Hawk79

Yellow Belt
Joined
Jul 31, 2023
Messages
41
Reaction score
6
I do Muay Thai and obviously this involves boxing.

If I want to be really good at boxing within Muay Thai, is it enough for me to just practice what I am learning about boxing in Muay Thai on a regular basis?

Would doing boxing by itself result in my learning new skills?

I guess another way of asking the question is, are boxers better at boxing because they practice punching more than a Muay Thai fighter or do they also learn a wider variety of boxing skills than a Muay Thai fighter?

If doing 2 hours of Muay Thai boxing practice is identical to doing 2 hours of boxing practice, there is no point in trying to find a boxing trainer (something I haven't been able to do anyway).
 

drop bear

Sr. Grandmaster
Joined
Feb 23, 2014
Messages
23,195
Reaction score
7,876
Most Thai guys I know will box. Part of it is just versatility. You have more options to train than if you just do thai.

And so boxers sort of have better striking skills than thai guys in that some boxers have better skills than some thai fighters. And to get that information you have to be able to play their game.
 
OP
H

Hawk79

Yellow Belt
Joined
Jul 31, 2023
Messages
41
Reaction score
6
But if I just spend the same amount of time focusing on boxing skills I learn in Muay Thai that I would if I did boxing, is there any difference?

Do boxers just have better boxing skills because they dedicate 100% of practice to boxing?
 

drop bear

Sr. Grandmaster
Joined
Feb 23, 2014
Messages
23,195
Reaction score
7,876
But if I just spend the same amount of time focusing on boxing skills I learn in Muay Thai that I would if I did boxing, is there any difference?

Do boxers just have better boxing skills because they dedicate 100% of practice to boxing?
It depends how good the guys are around you at boxing.
 

Oily Dragon

Senior Master
Joined
May 2, 2020
Messages
3,167
Reaction score
1,608
I don't think it's as simple as "boxers are better at boxing", there's no real way to know. I'm sure plenty of Thai boxers would clean the clock any other full contact boxing competitor in a pure boxing match. And vice versa, I've seen plenty of boxers try out Thai style and absolutely dominate. And people who do both (like my MT coach) effortlessly blend them, just like those uncommon dudes who switch between ortho and southpaw and make it look easy.

But there is are definitely technical differences. Thai boxers have to worry about a lot more than fists.

Boxers don't train guarding against elbow strikes and kicks, which is why the Muay Thai stance and guard are a little unorthodox compared to pro/ammy boxing. That's not to say a boxing guard isn't going to work in Muay. As long as your hands are up, what's the difference.
 

Holmejr

Brown Belt
Joined
Dec 23, 2017
Messages
473
Reaction score
276
Pure boxers have better boxing skills than pure MT fighters. Boxers dont have to worry about the other 6 weapons. Boxing has a faster and more fluid hitting style. Boxing footwork is more fluid whereas MT footwork tends to be slower and stronger. The evasive Bob/weave and slip of boxings come from a much lighter, more evasive footwork. Boxers tend to stay lower that MT fighters, whereas MT fighters stand more upright. These are generalitys and of course there are always exceptions to the rule. Tyson as an inside fighter would have stronger footwork than the outside fighter such as Ali or Sugar Ray Leonard. A western boxing match between a top boxer vs. top MT fighter, IMO would, more often than not, go to the boxer.
 

skribs

Grandmaster
Joined
Nov 14, 2013
Messages
7,249
Reaction score
2,393
It might depend on the gym. But overall, I don't think so.

A boxer is going to do things different than a Muay Thai fighter, because the boxer doesn't have to deal with the same things a Muay Thai fighter does. You don't have to protect yourself against leg kicks in boxing, so your stance and fighting style is going to support that. You don't have to worry about knees, so you can be more dynamic with your level changes.

I hear quite often in MT class "This isn't boxing, if you do that in boxing it's great because you don't have knees coming at you", or something to that effect.
 

punisher73

Senior Master
Joined
Mar 20, 2004
Messages
3,917
Reaction score
986
Platform will be slightly different between the two because boxing isn't worried about delivering and defending kicks, so your "stance" will reflect that.

In boxing, you will see fighters clinch up to avoid damage and hold the other person to get a "reset" by the ref. In Muay Thai, you are still going to be taking damage from the other weapons.

In boxing, you will often see a fighter bend over at the waist to avoid punches (NOT talking about an active bob/weave) In Muay Thai you are going to eat kicks or knees by doing that.

So while both boxing and Muay Thai use the same punches and there is a lot of cross over, there are some differences that need to be accounted for.
 

Tony Dismukes

MT Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Nov 11, 2005
Messages
7,458
Reaction score
7,403
Location
Lexington, KY
As others have pointed out, the technical details for optimizing boxing change once you put them into a Muay Thai context. For example:

Boxers tend to use a more bladed stance. Muay Thai classically uses a more squared up stance, in order to better deliver and defend against round kicks. (The typical boxing stance is very vulnerable to leg kicks.)

Boxers are more likely to use crouching, ducking, and leaning in their movements. This can be much more risky in Muay Thai due to the kicks and knees, so MT fighters tend to stand much more upright.

Muay Thai fighters don't usually use uppercuts so much. Partly this is because the knee fulfills many of the same functions and partly it's because MT fighters stand more upright, which presents fewer openings for the uppercut.

High level boxers sometimes like to fight in the pocket at close range, relying on head movement or a tight guard to keep them safe. In Muay Thai, this range will quickly turn into a battle of clinching and knees.

Classic Muay Thai traditionally used less active evasive footwork than boxing.

All that said, there are plenty of Muay Thai fighters who have incorporated more elements of boxing than you might find in classic MT. For example, they might utilize a hybrid stance which is more square than the typical boxing stance and more bladed than the classic MT stance. Or they might transition between stances and tactics depending on range and what they are trying to do at the moment. Some Muay Thai fighters have learned to be just as mobile and evasive as any boxer.

To answer your original question, it sort of depends on your coaches. Your MT coach might be teaching you just the rudiments of boxing as used in classic Muay Thai or he might be once of those who knows how to adapt high level boxing to a MT context. If you go to a boxing coach, they might give you some useful refinements that your MT coach is unaware of ... or they might just try to mold your boxing into a style which is more optimized for boxing competition rules.
 

Ji679

White Belt
Joined
Dec 6, 2023
Messages
15
Reaction score
7
Boxing is very old school . Boxing used to to popular

MT is popular one now
Know due to its use in ufc . That and bjj
 
Top