It’s true in every field… Don’t be afraid of change.

“Just because it’s the way it’s always been done, it doesn’t mean it’s the best way.” ~ Dr. Bryan Mann, assistant director of strength and conditioning at the University of Missouri

Are you still doing everything you do the way you started out doing it? Or have you learned a better, more efficient way as you’ve gone along?

Traditionalists stick to “tried and tested” methods. But refuse to try and test other methods… that may be more effective!

Sports science is evolving all the time as we learn better how the body really works. These lessons filter down into the various sports at a different rate depending on the culture and specialties of that sport.

Muay Thai culture is slowly changing, but is lagging behind most sports, and specifically combat sports.

With a vast array of sports out there, all with coaches and athletes striving to become the best they can be in their field, many new lessons are being learned and shared every day.

Each sport has specialist knowledge in key, critical areas for them. But, this knowledge is also applicable to other sports too. Crucial methods and practices experimented with and learned in the hot bed of one sport, can be shared and applied to other sporting applications too.

For example, flexibility and balance methods from gymnastics, strength and explosive power methods from Olympic lifters and aerobic conditioning methods of rugby players can all help Thai boxers be better Muay Thai athletes.

Why not take advantage of more effective training methods that others have discovered?

A narrow, unadventurous view of training will cause you to miss all this innovation. And your Muay Thai progress will suffer for it.

Don’t be afraid to fail… listen, try (properly) for yourself, and then decide.

Remember, pioneers are often discredited by the status quo initially, but eventually are accepted and make things better for everyone.

I hope the information I share on my website will prompt some open-minded experimentation in Muay Thai gyms around the world… And ultimately move Muay Thai forward, helping Thai boxers become the world-class combat athletes they deserve to be.

My mantra at Heatrick Strength & Conditioning is “Respecting the traditional, embracing the new.”

But don’t think for one moment I disregard traditional training methods, there’s massive value in a lot of it. But there are also some better, more effective choices to be made in planning training and selection of training methods too.

I’m always open to new ideas and influences, always updating and changing my own approach based on my current knowledge and experience.

Don’t be afraid of change. It’s good. It means you’re learning.

If you’re learning you’re growing. If you’re not growing you’re dying… ;)

Don Heatrick

Founder of Heatrick Strength and Conditioning

Don Heatrick is a family man from the UK, former mechanical design engineer, European Muay Thai silver medallist, former pro Thai boxer (ranked 4th in UK while aged 40-years), a Muay Thai coach, podcast host, and the go-to expert on Muay Thai performance training with over 25 years of coaching experience.

Don helps ambitious fighters and coaches take their game to the next level by bridging the gap between Strength & Conditioning, Performance Science, and Muay Thai.

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