I came to Thailand to train Muay Thai in the motherland of Muay Thai. I had done my research and found the perfect gym for me. There are not only welcoming of foreigners, but specialize in them. Tiger Muay Thai is a leader in the industry in this regard. Many other gyms have followed suit, while some have not. Some Muay Thai gyms refuse to capitulate, at their own detriment. They struggle to survive in a very competitive market. Tiger has stayed true to Muay Thai in that you are not going to come have a leisurely visit without spilling a little blood. It is Muay Thai after all. You will have earned the right to wear their shirt before you leave, or you will have wasted a lot of time and money.
I left Tiger Muay Thai the day after winning my fight in the Barbeque Beat Down. I went on a two week tour of the Thai islands. I went to the Fool Moon Party on Koh Phang ang (Look it up, it is amazing). I got my scuba certification on Koah Tao and Koh Samui. I met a ton of awesome people and had a blast doing it.
After hearing about my experience in the BBQ Beat Down, my 19 year old son, Nickolas asked if he could come out and try it. It was such an amazing experience for me, that I decided to stay two more weeks, let Nick come train, and let him have a shot at the Beat Down.
So here I am, back in Phuket, on Soi Tad Ied, at Tiger Muay Thai.
I had a bit of an internal dilemma going on. I know how brutal those trainers can be. I want my son to have that experience, but it would be very difficult for me to watch it and not want to intervene. For that reason, I decided to take private lessons at Dragon Muay Thai, so I could continue my training, while my son went to Tiger.
I took him down and introduced him to everyone. Most importantly, I put him in Kay’s hands. I asked Kay to get him ready for a fight. He knew exactly what to do, and did an amazing job with Nick.
The problem with Nick, is that he is such a likable kid, that it’s hard to be mean to him. I have a face you just want to punch. Nick has a face you want to kiss. I watched some of Kay’s training sessions with Nick from afar, and, he did push him. But, I’m not sure how hard.
I, on the other hand met some really great people at Dragon Muay Thai. They are far more traditional. They are still coming around to the idea of being nice to Westerners. Most of them don’t speak English, and if they do, it’s not very well. I got some awesome training there, and they’ve made some recent improvement to their facility. I highly recommend checking them out.
At the end of the two weeks, Nick did, in fact, fight in the Beat Down. He got a kid that had been at camp for 3 months longer than I was there, and about a foot taller. Nick is used to competing with taller people. He is only 5′ 2″.
It was a super close fight, but the judges gave it to his opponent.
What an amazing experience it was however. I literally watched that young man grow up before my eyes in a span of two weeks. He has always been an amazing human being, abut the confidence, and boost to his self-esteem was incredible.
We left Tiger Muay Thai closer than ever, and regard our time there as a high point in our relationship.
Source by Mike Stidham