Muay Thai endurance training is more than just endless running! And this conversation with one of my Heavy Hitters is too good to keep ourselves.

This isn’t just any chat; it’s about mastering the art of Muay Thai endurance. Ready for some insights?

Here’s a glimpse of what we uncovered:

  • We break down the real deal behind “Fight Endurance Management”.
  • Explore the ever-mysterious law of accommodation and its role in Muay Thai.
  • Get a sneak peek into age-specific training nuances.
  • Plus, actionable steps on how to make every drop of your energy count, especially when you’re in the ring.

It’s not just about hitting harder; it’s about hitting smarter. This video is all about refining those nuances in your game.

Keep scrolling to uncover our show notes and bonus resources!

by Don Heatrick

Muay Thai Endurance Training

If you’ve stepped foot in a Muay Thai gym, you probably know there’s often a lot of high-volume work. It’s almost a rite of passage.

You might find yourself doing countless drills and running those long stretches because, well, that’s what most fighters are given in their camps.

The Law of Accommodation in Muay Thai Enduance Training

Ever stumbled upon the ‘law of accommodation‘? In simple terms, your body gets used to whatever you’re doing regularly.

So, if you’re pounding the pavement every morning in Thailand (or anywhere else for that matter), your body will adjust. You get accustomed to it. And over time, your body, being the smart machine it is, will just “accommodate” that regular training.

Now, this is both good and tricky. Good because a certain level of conditioning is essential. But tricky because to actually improve, you need to shake things up.

Muay Thai Endurance Training – Tawanchai Steady Run

Intensity: The Muay Thai Endurance Game Changer

There’s no harm in having a steady training background. But it’s the intensity that can truly push your boundaries.

If you’re consistently doing steady-state runs, remember: it’s also about recovery. Those slow-paced, long runs that we see in traditional Thai camps? They’re not just for show. They’re easy and help in recovery.

But let’s be honest, while training, especially when the coaches are watching, we all want to be seen as the hardest worker in the room. Yet deep down, some fighters faced with a relentless training schedule just want to get by doing just enough! 

The Evolution of a Fighter’s Training

When you’re younger, your training must be fundamentally different. Young fighters are what I call “anaerobic animals”, and training is tailored differently. Their bodies are just not built for explosive, neuromuscular work yet (Long Term Athlete Development Model).

But as you mature, your training should naturally shift to exploit this ability. You become more explosive, and while that’s awesome, it’s also demanding. Think of it as having a car. You might start with a fuel-efficient one, but as you advance, you’re essentially getting a dragster that consumes a lot more energy.

Finding the Balance in Muay Thai Endurance

And that’s the real challenge: balancing your energy. With great power comes… you know, a greater need to manage it. You need a robust aerobic base (thank you, long runs!) but also the ability to explode when needed without burning out.

Here’s a nugget to mull over: Train so that your 100% effort keeps increasing. But during a fight, operate at about 80% of that.

Muay Thai Endurance Training – current 80 percent sustatinable effort

Why? Because even at 80%, if your maximum potential has increased, you’re delivering more than you ever did before without burning out.

Muay Thai Endurance Training – future 80 percent sustatinable effort

The Final Round

Muay Thai is as much a physical game as it is a mental chess match. It’s about knowing when to sprint and when to jog, when to explode and when to conserve. 

So, while you train rigorously, remember to also train wisely. Until next time, stay sharp, train smart, and give every round your best shot – just not always your hardest.  ;)

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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The Science of Building Champions video series
The science of building a Muay Thai champion’s strength & conditioning, which results in…
  • Fastest possible short-term progress
  • Maximum long-term progress
  • More efficient movement patterns
  • Better technique
  • Relentless endurance (never gas out)
  • Reaching athletic potential as quickly and efficiently as possible (without wasting time on things that aren’t worth doing)
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