It has been hotter than hot in Houston, Texas, for a while now. Real temperature upper 90s, feels like temperature including humidity 107F or so.
For our workout Tuesday in MMA Thai Boxing, we started by running for at least 5 minutes on the mat. This was way too long in the heat. When we stopped running we did the normal warm-up:
Neck circles, arm circles, bent arm shoulder circles, twist at the waist letting arms be loose below the elbow, hip circles, knee circles, touch toes 50 times, feet together and then bend forward with legs straight to touch the floor.
Next, we were put into groups of three. We have never sparred in groups of three before. I was paired up with two of my long time friends from the gym, so it was fun. We were numbered one, two, and three. The first person threw a left jab to number two. Number two blocked the jab by bringing both boxing gloves in front of their face touching their forehead, kind of like peek-a-boo. Number two throws the left jab and number three blocks. Number three throws the left jab at number one and number one blocks. In between every jab and block, each person must adjust their boxing stance to be lined up with the person with whom they are sparring.
Maintaining the boxing stance includes staying on the balls of your feet, left foot at 10 o’clock, right foot at 4 o’clock, chin down, chest up, shoulders back and relaxed, standing straight up. This drill kept us moving and constantly adjusting our boxing stance to switch from one person to the next.
Next we threw a round house kick with the right leg, chopping with the right hand. The kick was thrown softly, using control, so that no one was hurt. We kicked each other between the knee and the hip. When sparring to practice Thai Boxing moves, it is important to know how to control yourself, do the move correctly but not with enough force to hurt your partner. When you are fighting, that is when you can kick and punch with full force. We went around in the circle with the right round house kick. Then we put left jab, right round house kick together.
Next Coach Saul showed us how to block the right round house kick by lifting our left leg, bent at the knee, leg turned out about 45 degrees, foot flexed in the direction towards the direction that the kick is coming.
Then we threw the right push kick, kicking our sparring partner in the stomach. Really, touching our sparring partner on the stomach, not kicking. Soft touch. We put the moves together, left jab, right round house, right push kick.
We practiced the left round house kick separately, then we added the left round house kick to the sequence of moves.
The next move we did was the right knee. We practice right knee caught by our partner with the right glove pushing downward. After several rounds of right knees, we added the right knee to the sequence. When throwing the right knee we were sure to have the left foot turned out 45 degrees and be on the ball of the left foot. We practiced the whole sequence: left jab, right roundhouse kick, right push kick, left round house kick, and right knee.
Left elbow is the next move we practiced. We threw left elbows in a circle. Number one throws the left elbow to number two. Number two throws the left elbow to number three. Number three throws the left elbow to number one, and around and around. When throwing the left elbow turn the whole body to the right and turn out the left heel twisting on the ball of the left foot. The left elbow was added to the sequence and we practiced all the moves.
The last move we added was left stiff arm. A stiff arm is used to create space between you and your sparring partner. After the elbow push your sparring partner on the chest and move back as you straighten your left arm.
We put all the moves together: left jab, right round house kick, right push kick, left round house kick, right knee, left elbow, and left stiff arm. All the moves we worked on during class all put together in one smooth sequence.
It was so hot! Lots of sweaty people. Another great workout at the Metro Fight Club.
To Your Health,
Kate Hauer, MMA Thai Boxing