Ongbak Comes To Protect The Village

Ongbak Comes To Protect The Village

(In this Photo: BGV14 Grundge Art)

Tony Jaa was the original Ong Bak. The breakout movie was released in 2003. It put Muay Boran and Muay Thai into the spotlight. The story follows Ting (Jaa) as a skilled Muay Thai warrior. The village’s sacred Buddha is stolen by drug dealers and Ting must go recover it. He uses his Muay Thai to defeat the foes and secure the village idol.

While Jaa was the original Ong Bak, the current fighting Ong Bak is just as skilled. He’s a veteran of over 300 fights.

He was recently recruited at Fairtex.

“I was a champion at Channel 7,” he said. “This year I won a tournament at Lumpinee World Championship.

Ong Bak trained at Sitsawatseua and is 30 years old. The 145lb athlete is scheduled for the big time. He’s training for a fight at Lumpinee.

If he does well there might be a contract from Fairtex. He’ll be able to bring honor to his village without having to fight off a bunch of drug dealers.


Hurt Hand

(In this Photo: BGV14 Black/White Painter)

Injuries are common. One of the most common is hand injuries. These hand injuries are happening at a greater rate.

Elisa Keck recently fought in the Thaiwasadu final. The bout was in small MMA gloves over 5 rounds. In the first round, Keck dropped her opponent Sarah Gohier.

“I didn’t think I was gonna drop her,” Keck said. “I just tried a combo. It was just bam. Then she fell and I was like ‘Oh cool.’”

The win got Keck a substantial payday. It was 50,000 baht plus the Thaiwasadu belt. The company is similar to Home Depot in the States. The tournament is run every year to advertise the construction company. Winners from the tournament usually get a spot in the Road To ONE tournament later in the year.

While Keck got the win she also picked up an injury.

“My knuckles hurt,” she said. She can’t punch with her right hand. The first two knuckles aren’t broken but are sensitive still.

The introduction of small gloves into Muay Thai creates more drama, more viewers, and more injuries.

Keck plans to let her hand rest for a while but will jump back into it later this month.


MMA And The Heavy Bag

(In This Photo: BGV16-Khaki, HB6 Heavy Bag- Green)

MMA and heavy bag work aren’t often in the same sentence. But for Jihin Radzuan that’s different. The Malaysian star uses the heavy bag often.

“As an MMA fighter I need to move side to side,” she said. “I want to find that knockout shot.”

Radzuan uses the heavy bag to practice her lateral movement. She circles the bag and strikes. Circles and strikes.

The drills instill solid footwork and the ability to see and go for that KO shot.


The Return Of Lawrence

(In this Photo: Hand Wraps HW2-Gray, AS1 Ankle Guard-Green, HB3 Extra Large-Brown)

British athlete Iony Lawrence grew up in the sport. Her father owns House Of Pain gym in the UK. Lawrence grew up fighting.

But she’s been on a long break.

“I haven’t fought since December,” she said.

Lawrence suffered an injury to her shoulder. She returned home to the UK. She rested. Got a tattoo. And came back to Thailand.

Now she’s due to fight later this month.

“I feel good,” she said. “I’m excited to fight.”


Headgear And Scars

(In this Photo: HG13 Head Gear-RedMuay Thai Jersey-Maroon)

Wearing headgear is supposed to prevent cuts. For Petchwarin its to protect her cuts. She recently fought at Lumpinee. She was slashed open by her opponent from Chiang Mai.

The stitches are out but there is still pain.

“I wear the headgear because of the scar,” she said. “It still hurts.”

The scar is slightly raised and pink on her forehead. It is tender to the touch.

“I use Vaseline to help it,” Petchwarin said.

Most scars fade after 2-3 months. The immediate swelling and feelings of pain take about a month to heal.

But Petchwarin is due to get back into the ring soon.

Because as Mr. Wong, founder of Fairtex often says, “No Pain. No Gain.”


Holding Pads For Different Sizes

(In this Photo: FGV17-BlackSP5-RedBPV3-Blue, KPLC5-Black)

Different athletes come in different sizes. The same goes for trainers. Some are small, some are tall. Most trainers in Thailand are men.

For trainer Guy the main difference in athletes is their height.

“Working with men is easier because they are taller,” he said. “With women, they are smaller so I have to hunch over a little.”

Hunching over as a pad holder can be bad on the back. It can also create poor form for the athlete.

But height is the only difference. Taller women are easier for taller men to hold for.

“Smilla is taller than most men,” he said. “She’s good to work with.”

At Fairtex, the smaller trainers like Kru Noon, and Danchai work with the shorter athletes. This is not only because their heights are similar but also because what works for short athletes doesn’t always work for tall fighters and vice versa.




Author: Matt Lucas

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