Muaythai is a combat sport originating from Thailand that uses stand-up striking along with various clinching techniques. This physical and mental discipline is known as ‘the art of eight limbs’ because it is characterised by the combined use of fists, elbows, knees and shins.

One of the unique features in Muaythai are competitors wearing a sacred headband (mongkon) and arm bands (prajiad) as they enter the competition ring.

Before the first round, every athlete must perform the traditional Muaythai ritual of homage “Wai Kru” according to the customs of Muaythai. The traditional Muaythai musical instruments: java pipe, small cymbals and two drums accompany the ritual and is played during the bouts.

Formal Muaythai techniques are divided into two groups: Mae Mai or major techniques and Luk Mai or minor techniques.

Muaythai is often a fighting art of attrition, where opponents exchange blows with one another throughout the contest.

Almost all techniques in the sport use the entire body movement, rotating the hip with each kick, punch, elbow and block.

Muaythai can be traced to the middle of the 16th century but it only began to gain an international reputation around the start of the 20th century.

In 1995, the World Muay Thai Federation was founded in Bangkok to govern the sport worldwide. It has over 70 member countries registered.

At Ashgabat 2017
There will be 14 medal events which includes nine categories for men and five for women contested over four days at the Muaythai Kickboxing Arena from 17–21 September.

-54kg, -57kg, -60kg, -63.5kg, -67kg, -71kg, -75kg, -81kg, -86kg

-51kg, -54kg, -57kg, -60kg, -63.5kg

Competition format
All fights are single elimination – there will be no tournament style.

Points are awarded to each athlete per round. If an athlete wins a round by a small margin he will receive 10 points, the opponent will receive 9 points. If an athlete wins a round by a big margin he will receive 10 points; the opponent will receive 8 or 7 points respectively.

Matches can be won on points, by retirement, by referee stopping the contest, disqualification, knock-out, no contest or walk-over.

Quick Facts

  • One of the unique features in Muay is the music, which is known as the “Sarama”. It is played before and during the combat session
  • While Muay fighters now wear padded gloves similar to small boxing gloves, in the past, they only wore hemp ropes and threads or cotton wrapped around the hands and forearms as protection

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