When it comes to training Muay Thai or kickboxing to really progress in the sport sparring with your fellow team mates is an absolute must. Strapping on shin guards and 14 - 16oz boxing gloves and testing your current skill set is what many consider to be the ‘funnest’ part of training in the striking arts.
As with any sport however your style often reflects at least a snippet on your personality and when you combine that with punching and kicking other people you can bet that this creates for some unique sparring ‘personalities’ Let’s take a look at what you can expect from 5 types of sparring partners you will meet in the gym.
- The Apologist
This type will usually be more of a beginner and quite likely taken up martial arts training to help improve their self confidence. They still find sparring fairly awkward and generally throw single, half hearted strikes to their opponent. If something does happen to land however that will usually be followed up with quick, rapid fire apologies for doing, well exactly what they are supposed to be doing.
- The Bully
Pretty much the opposite of the apologist this person probably got into martial arts for the wrong reason all together. They are most likely to be more experienced than a beginner but not at the level of a professional fighter, where they would have most likely learnt to be more humble as there’s always someone bigger and badder down the line. These guys will usually scout their targets in the gym while softly playing the game with guys bigger or more experienced then themselves, once faced off with someone they know they are stronger then, they will lavishly stoke their ego while slamming some poor newbie around the ring. If you’re a beginner steer clear of these gym idiots and if you feel intimidated be sure to have a quiet word with the coach or instructor who should make sure your partnered with the right guys.
- The All Outer
Unlike ‘the bully’ these guys will usually go hard and all out with absolutely anyone. This is not a game to them, they have seen every martial art movie ever made. The distant echoes of the coach shouting ‘Only 50% power today guys’ drift in one ear and somehow convert themselves to ‘It’s do or die today guys, your entire life literally depends on winning this round’
What then follows is a barrage of strikes usually accompanied by a symphony of spluttering striking noises and spit as you turtle up and question if your decision not to stay at home at watch that latest episode of Squid Games really was the best choice after all.
- The Technical Wizard
This IQ strategist is always a welcomed addition to any gym. Usually well mannered and respectful, once the gloves are touched though you will quickly be left frustrated, impressed and questioning why everything you’ve ever learnt is accomplishing exactly nada. They read your every move and are always 3 steps ahead, countering your shots and playing with your mind as much as they are your body. Each strike landing lightly but cleanly and if they happen to catch your kick you will be waltzed to the floor ever so elegantly.
- The professional
These guys aren’t just enjoying their weekend hobby, these guys are doing this to put food on their plate. They have quite likely gone through one or more of the the above stages. After training 6x a week for up to 6 hours a day it puts them into a totally different standard altogether. The muscle memory they have formed from the thousands upon thousands of repetitions means they can almost effortlessly string out a beautifully sequenced combination. Their reactions and counters to your attacks will seem impossibly quick as their brains have been hardwired and coded to simply react without needing processing time. If you are still fairly new to sparring and go with a professional fighter remember to be respectful, just because they haven’t knocked you unconscious doesn’t mean they aren’t capable. Piss one of them off and you’re sure to find out the hard way.
Before You Spar!
If you’re looking for the make the most of your training experience it’s essential you have good quality Muay Thai fight gear that’s made in Thailand. To get fully stocked up before you go there’s no better place then Super Export Shop. You will feel like a kid in a candy shop gazing at the packed walls filled to the brim with every boxing glove, shin guard, punch or kicking pads you can dream of not only that you can find all the best brands such as, Fairtex, Booster Fight Gear, King Pro Boxing, Twins, Windy, Danger and a whole lot more. Super Export Shop is owned and managed by well known fight promotor, Sasan Ghosairi who uses his expertise in the fight industry to ensure he only selects the best quality fight gear products and best of all offers the most competitive prices on the market. If you want to load up before you arrive to Thailand you can order from www.superexportshop.org