Muay Thai is a form of kickboxing developed in Thailand and is considered their national sport. This Thai-style boxing exploded in popularity in recent years thanks to the UFC.
Your body can take a literal beating during a Muay Thai session, so you might be wondering: what gear do you need for Muay Thai? To start, you’ll need gloves, shin guards, mouth protection, padding for your elbows and knees, among other things. Luckily, Muay Thai equipment can be durable and affordable depending on the brand.
You don’t need the most expensive gear to start learning the art of eight limbs and get in the best shape of your life.
Table of Contents
Essential Gear Do You Need For Muay Thai
Safety is your main priority when practicing Muay Thai. As long as you can find high-quality brands for the following pieces of equipment, you’re well on your way to a fun and safe session.
Muay Thai Gloves
don’t miss the Best Muay Thai Gloves
In Muay Thai, you might mainly strike using your hands, so they’ll need long-lasting protection with Muay Thai gloves. They should support and protect your hands with high-quality leather and a comfortable but not tight fit. Quality gloves will protect your opponent from getting injured as well.
Your wrists and knuckles can take just as much a beating in Muay Thai as your hands. Hand wraps provide extra padding inside the gloves as well as joint protection while you strike.
Properly wrapping your hands is a delicate balance. You need to wrap your hands tightly, but not so tightly that you lose circulation, or not so loose that the wrap falls apart. Above all, you’ll need to wrap your wrists for best support when you punch.
Muay Thai shorts and Workout Clothes
For better comfort and support during a workout, a regular T-shirt and shorts might not cut it. Thai shorts are a popular choice because they come in a satin blend fabric that resists moisture and is lightweight so you can move faster.
We recommend trying shirts made from polyester-spandex blends (compression material), polyester, or cotton. All these materials either improve blood circulation, wick moisture, or feel comfortable for sensitive skin.
If you’re not sure if you will train only Muay Thai for a long time, MMA shorts are a great option too. They’re versatile and will work not only in your Muay Thai training but also in no-gi BJJ and MMA sessions.
Gear Do You Need For Muay Thai Sparring
Sparring is one of the critical components of Muay Thai, mainly because it improves the fighter’s reflexes and ability to react under pressure. Sparring day is your opportunity to test new techniques and land those combinations you’ve been drilling.
Your shins are one of your most sensitive bones, so they need tough protection during sparring and training. Shin guards cover your shins and step, using rigid padding that keeps you safe and allows you to move nimbly. Shins with multilayered padding provide the best protection and shock absorption.
On the one hand, thinner shin guards allow you to move faster, but you won’t have as much protection. Thicker shin guards will keep you safe, but the more considerable bulk might slow you down a little. You may have to play around with bulk and thickness to find what works.
You’ll need a mouthguard with outstanding durability and good breathability to protect your teeth from clenching, punches, and other injuries.
Usually, they have heavy-duty shock-absorbing rubber and gel liners that fit your individual teeth’ exact shape. Some have double-layers with breathing holes. We recommend boil and bite as they’re in mid-range for price and offer great value for your money.
If you’re male, you know how much it hurts to get hit in the groin. It might also be dangerous since a brutal hit to the groin can injure a man’s reproductive organs.
The best groin protectors keep the whole package, so to speak, tucked in tightly but comfortably. The cup, usually made from plastic, needs to be firmest of all to protect from impact.
Even with a cup getting hit will still be quite painful. Don’t forget to protect yourself and your training partners at all times.
Extra Gear You Might Want When Training Muay Thai
Essential gear is all well and good, but it might help to have some of the following pieces on hand to raise the stakes while you sparr.
Not a lot of people spar with their elbows, but in case you do, elbow pads play a vital role in protecting your training partner from injury. Elbows are a hard bone, so even with padding, we advise caution during sparring.
Muay Thai Ankle Guards
Ankle guards are more for comfort than protection, keeping your ankle joints warm so they function better. When the muscles warm-up, they are less prone to straining and other injuries.
Muay Thai Gym Bag
You carry around a lot of equipment for Muay Thai sessions, so it’s usually good to have a larger gym bag made from breathable materials. A special pocket for carrying your everyday things or sweaty clothes is especially helpful. Whether you carry a duffel or backpack-style gym bag is up to you.
Muay Thai is less focused on attacking the head than boxing. Overall, sparring sessions at most top-level gyms are very light. So headgear is not typical. However, it never hurts to have extra protection.
Any physical activity is going to require water now and then. The fun part is that you can use whichever water bottle you like with whichever liquid volume you want.
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Muay Thai Basic Gear Checklist
- Muay Thai gloves. 16oz for great padding and 8 oz for more speed.
- Thai Shorts and workout clothes.
- Mouthguard. boil and bite are a great choice here.
- Hand Wraps. the ones that are a little elastic are great for training/sparring.
Final Word On Muay Thai Gear
It may seem like practicing Muay Thai requires lots of equipment, but you can get a solid start as long as you have the basic essentials and the mental strength to grind.
Everything combined should not cost you thousands of dollars, but the most important thing is developing the physical strength and mental discipline to stick to your training.
Muay Thai Gear FAQ
Before we go, let’s answer a few frequently asked questions about Muay Thai gear.
WHAT DO I NEED FOR MY FIRST MUAY THAI CLASS?
It’s a good idea to have some gloves, hand wraps, shin guards, and decent workout clothes since you’ll mainly focus on cardio and different drills.
WHAT DO YOU WEAR TO A MUAY THAI FIGHT?
We recommend wearing Muay Thai shorts, 8 oz gloves, and a mouthguard. In some amateur competitions, you are also allowed to wear shin guards, elbow protection, and even headgear.
DO YOU WEAR SHOES FOR MUAY THAI?
You do not wear shoes. Training take place on gym mats, and your shin guards will protect your feet from impact.
DO I NEED SHIN GUARDS FOR MUAY THAI?
Preferably, yes. Your shins are one of many contact points in Muay Thai, and your shins are tender, so protecting them is a good idea.