Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: East London, England
I'm didn't start Muay Thai till the age of 23 and i'm 24 so i've been doing it for under a year. I had the same concerns as you. I figured I would be crap and never really develop to the point where I can actually beat somebody with it. How wrong was I. The thing is, had it been another marital art such as Karate, Judo or Kung Fu or something, then I think age would have been a factor as those styles involve a serious amount of technique and you can be less than fluid and perfect to be able to use them effectively.
Muay Thai is competelely different ball game. There is very little technical moves in Muay Thai. There are probably no more than 17 different techniques, which helps with muscle memory and it's incredibly easy to pick up after 4 months, and the scary thing is it's the most effective fighting style for any situation whether it be combat sports of self protection. People arent' exaggerating when they say it's the most brutal sport in the world because it teaches you to transform you entire body into a weapon, and the method of punching and kicking is far more effective than traditional kickboxing or other martial arts.
My teacher tells me that he's a bit worried because there are guys with literally no fighting experience whatsoever in countries he has visited to learn Muay Thai and in about 3 months they leave the gym only to go on and be very efficient street fighters. It's brutal stuff and more and more people are becoming more aware of how effective it is, which is a bit worrying to me aswell.
But seriously, don't hesitate to take it up. You'll grow more confident and pretty much become more and more fearless whenever you get into a brawl in a club or something. Forrest Griffin says in his book that people have a fight or flight mode in their brain, with the latter being what most people pertain to, but with muay thai, i dunno, you'll more than likely to have the former installed into your brain and it's very much a blood sport. It's violent in it's mentality.
Most pure muay thai practitioners aren't looking for the KO quickly or trying to jab their way to a decision, they are about breaking you down mentallity, they are about showing you who's superior and making you quit on yourself before they do. That's what makes it the most effective fighting style. Stick with it and then wish you had done it earlier.
Why Do We Fall?