How to get the most out of your Muay Thai workouts?
You have to keep track of your progress and push yourself both physically and mentally to a new level of fitness. Bruce Lee once famously stated: "There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them."
Some people prefer to train alone, others prefer to train within a team. From my experience I can confirm that training with a dedicated group of people is much more effective. Group training provides more mental pressure to push oneself to be better and to train harder. Not to mention that the most basic parts of Muaythai training, like Thai pads training and sparring, are by design meant to be trained with the others.
Muay Thai is designed to promote the level of fitness required for ring competition. That demands a lot of commitment from fighters but also offers a great reward in a shape of a supreme level of fitness.
In general Muay Thai workouts can be divided into 4 major categories:
Explosive power workout
Thai pad workout: sets of kicks and punches and combinations
resistance speed training: Improves both: speed and explosiveness. That is how George St Pierre used to build up his speed to be able to cover so much distance in the octagon in such a short time.
reaction time training
To further improve your attack speed you need to improve your striking techniques and footwork as well.
weight training: bench press, squats, dumbbell chest press, heavy core training
overhand pull ups: more effective than underhand pull ups when it comes to building up your shoulder and back muscles. Chin-ups are on the other hand more effective at activating your biceps so I would recommend doing both of them
dips: great arm and triceps training
burpees: full body exercise that improves strength and body conditioning
and Stamina workout
rope jumping: increases your stamina and improves your footwork and body coordination.
swimming: expands your chest and arm muscles.
burpees: ultimate body workout. Boosts your endurance and power.
full sets of pad/bag kicks with 30-50-100 - depends how advanced you are - repetitions
and did I mentioned running? But seriously: running is the most effective stamina building workout of them all.
Most of the exercises are quite universal eg. pad training and plyometrics are good for both: speed and explosive power. In general power - which is a combination of strength and speed - and stamina are the most important parts of a comprehensive Muay Thai workouts. And the most effective exercise of them all is a full power sparring, which improves virtually every aspect of your physical performance and it makes you give everything in the ring.