Muay Thai (Thai: มวยไทย) is a martial art and combat sport originated from Thailand. It was initially created as a way to protect ancient emperors from enemies, and it slowly began to spread to other means of use. There are many different varieties of Muay Thai, and many different ways to train using it.
Muay Thai is characterized by the combined use of fists (Chok), elbows (Ti sok), kicks (Te), knees (Ti khao), and foot-thrust (Thip), along with various clinching and neck wrestling techniques (Chap kho). Almost all techniques in Muay Thai use the entire body movement, rotating the hip with each kick, punch, elbow and block.
The elbow strike is considered the most dangerous form of attack in Muay Thai. The elbow can be used in several ways as a striking weapon: horizontal, diagonal-upwards, diagonal-downwards, uppercut, downward, backward-spinning and flying. From the side it can be used as either a finishing move or as a way to cut the opponent's eyebrow so that blood might block his vision. When well connected, an elbow strike can cause serious damage to the opponent.
- Muay Thai is recognized as a very effective striking base within MMA, and is very widely practiced among mixed martial artists, such as Wanderlei Silva, Anderson Silva, Maurício Rua, José Aldo and many others.
- Ong-Bak: Muay Thai Warrior, a very successful 2003 Thai martial arts action film, starred Tony Jaa as an extremely skilled Muay Thai pratictioner.
- Muay Thai at Wikipedia