Muay Thai Special: Part 2 of 3: Charn Chai Muay Thai Gym: Pai, Thailand

Muay Thai Fighter Training (joup/sesame)

Muay Thai Fighter Training (joup/sesame)

Pai, Thailand – The second installment of Joup’s three part coverage of grass roots Muay Thai. I have traveled a long road through Thailand to the small town of Pai (80km NW of Chiang Mai) to find the origin and heart of Muay Thai – beyond the glitz and glamor of the UFC and Lumpinee Boxing Stadium in Bangkok. Of course both Lumpinee and the UFC are huge in modern fighting (and betting and prize purses), but the essence of the successful UFC fighter flow from training in Muay Thai. Joup has reviewed a basic history and development of Muay Thai in Part 1. Now we’ll observe the Pai Training Gym named Charn Chai with head trainer Bee. Part 3 will conclude by following the fighters of Charn Chia including Englishman Liam Kirkham (1-0) in bouts taking place at an annual festival in Pai.

Muay Thai Special: Part 1 of 3: History of the Art

Muay Thai fighter in training.

Muay Thai fighter in training. (Sesame/Joup)

Pai, Thailand – Being one of the most utilized money earning martial arts in the world leads to respected acclaim and ultimate popularity, all of which seemingly go hand in hand. However, for those that live the life of Muay Thai – the life of training, regimen, fighting and yet more training – there lies so much more. I have traveled a long road through Thailand to the small town of Pai (80km NW of Chiang Mai) to find the origin and heart of Muay Thai beyond the glitz and glamor of the UFC and Lumpinee Boxing Stadium in Bangkok. Of course both Lumpinee and the UFC are huge in modern fighting (and betting and prize purses), but the roots of the successful UFC fighter stem from, in part, training in Muay Thai. In this three part story Joup hopes to gain insight into Muay Thai through reviewing it’s history and development, observing a Pai Training Gym named Charn Chai with head trainer Bee and finally by following English fighter Liam Kirkham (1-0) who trains at Charn Chai and will fight his second fight in Pai.

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