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About Me – Ben

23

ben_profileMy name is Ben, and I have a problem. I’m addicted you see, addicted to fitness, addicted to Muay Thai,  and addicted to Boxing. It’s a problem that I can’t stop talking about, a problem that I’ll be sharing quite a lot with you, if you stick around this site. If you are reading this then I guess it means you want to know who I am and more importantly, what I’ve done. On the internet where anyone can say anything about everything, it’s good to have some basic credentials so you know what I’m saying has a bit more weight than hot air. This is especially important if someone is offering advice on fitness, nutrition, and combat sports!

So here it is, a bit about who I am and what I’ve done.

About Me

I’ve lived in many countries on at two different continents and consider myself quite well traveled, but I was born in Vancouver, Canada. We can ignore the boring childhood stuff (though I will say I lived a rather exotic childhood life, growing up in the jungles of Belize for 10 years after moving from Canada at the age of 5). My current home is Phuket, Thailand where I’ve been living (and training) the past 3 years.

6D3A3588Marital Arts have been a part of my life ever since I was a kid. I’ve been training  and have fought competitively (arguably professionally in some of them) in a number of the martial arts: Shotogun Karate, Brazilian Jujitsu, MMA, Traditional Muay Thai, and Western Boxing. I guess you could say I’m the modern definition of a Mixed Martial Artist, having cross trained in at least 5 of them (6 if we count that quick summer fling I had with Akido that went absolutely nowhere).

Currently, I’ve been living and training in Thailand for about three years at a Muay Thai camp, having fought 7 pro matches down here at the local Muay Thai stadium and one western boxing match so far.

It’s a crazy world down here in Thailand, and while there are plenty of fights to be had if you live here, it’s not all as it seems. There’s a lot of corruption and a lot of shady matches to get set up. I’ll talk a bit about living and fighting in Thailand and what you can expect if you participate in it.

casual meMy real passion now is western boxing, of which the irony is not lost on me, since I’m living in a place where Muay Thai is the mecca and western boxing is only a passing footnote. But as Woody Allen says, ”the heart wants what the heart wants!”

Fitness and Nutrition

I’m also really into fitness and nutrition. You’ll see a number of fitness and nutritional articles on this site — these come out of my own hand’s on experience with the topics, the latest scientific studies done by researchers (I try to give as many references to the actual studies as possible so you know what I’m saying has some basis), and from a few trusted websites/experts in the fitness/nutrition world I follow.

I don’t claim to have any sort of school pedigree in the fitness or nutrition world (no sports science degree, no kinesiology degree, no PT certification); I’m pretty much self-taught when it comes to these topics, but I like to think I know my shit when it comes to fitness advice, strength training, fight endurance training, and nutrition. I’ve been strength training with weights for years as a supplement to Muay Thai and MMA, I voraciously read the latest fitness and nutrition research studies, and I’ve had years of practicing nutritional and fitness experiments on myself.

I’ve also coached a number of people who have seen good results with weight loss and body recomposition based on my advice. The work, of course is all their own; I just helped with the informational aspect on how to get started and optimize their weight-loss/strength training strategies to see results.

Here are a couple transformational pictures of my own body. In the left picture, I was about 77 kilos  (170lbs) at about 20% bodyfat in 2010 and on the right I’m about 61-62 kilos (136lbs) at around 6% bodyfat 2013.

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Here are some older picture from a couple years ago showing body changes between 2010 and 2011,

workout transformation

Martial Arts and Me

Karate for 4-5 years as a teenager. YAWN. I’ve been involved in Martial Arts since I was 10, when my dad forced me to go to a Shotogun Karate class. I stuck with karate for a few years and was about a hair away from getting a black belt at 15 when I quite.

MMA/Jujitsu for 3 years (2005-2008/2010) I took a long break from Martial Arts but got involved in MMA around 2007. It was a real eye opener into the world of full contact martial arts and I was immediately hooked. I trained for about two years and competed in a number of Western Canadian Pankration/MMA/Jujtisu tournaments. I was pretty involved in jujitsu at this time, training at Zuma, Victoria BC (home gym to the female UFC fighter, Sarah Kaufman who actually was my sparring partner sometimes for jujitsu and boxing) for several years while going to university. I stopped for about a year then picked it back up for about 6 months at Gracie Barra in Vancouver.

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Traditional Muay Thai for 3 years in Thailand (2010-present): I left Canada in 2010 to move to Thailand and train traditional Muay Thai. This move to Thailand for Muay Thai was in part inspired by watching a friend compete in a live Muay Thai tournament for the Canadian title, this friend who was a Mexican home-stay student at my mom’s house and trained Muay Thai in his spare time, between going to English classes. His dedication to the sport was impressive and I had my first experience of un-watered down Muay Thai when I watched him enter a 4 man no-rules Muay Thai tournament and was astounded at how vicious, brutal, yet beautiful traditional Muay Thai was. I had watched MMA fights before on TV, but MMA paled compared to what full contact Muay Thai matches were in terms of blood and brutality. I was in love with the sport!

Well, a decade later, I’ve now been living and training in Phuket, ever since (about 3 years now), pretty much full time. I’ve experienced quite a bit of the real Muay Thai lifestyle. The ups of winning and the downs of defeat.The pain of training while you are tired and in pain, and the joys competing.

I’ve never, ever trained as much an as hard as I have the past three years, training every single day as well as doing road work most days. I’ve had 7 Muay Thai fights and 1 western boxing fight down here in Thailand. I won my first 6 Muay Thai fights, lost the 7th.

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Western Boxing: It took me a couple years in Thailand to realize that my real passion is actually western boxing, NOT Muay Thai. Naturally, there is a certain amount of irony in this because Thailand is not really the best place to train western boxing and to fight western boxing matches, being the mecca of muay thai. I’ve had 1 western boxing match so far.

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My Goals and MuayThaiPros.com

I’ve started this site with my brother and we hope to bring you plenty of good articles about Muay Thai. The goal here is to write real articles from real people; a sort of everyman’s guide to Muay Thai. I don’t claim to be the greatest fighter out there, but I’ve had plenty of real fights in the ring with a variety of martial arts (Muay Thai, MMA, BJJ, Boxing), so I can bring real perspective to the articles I write. In addition the fights I’ve had, I’ve sparred probably thousands of different guys, both boxing and Muay Thai. The turn over when you train at a gym in Thailand is pretty damn high so you end up working and sparring with many many different people as the years go by. I bring the perspective of a smaller guy, as it’s usually bigger guys I fight/spar. The last 5 fights I’ve had for example, there has been anywhere from a 10 kilo to 30 kilo weight difference between me and my opponents.

I’m currently working on my western boxing. I’ve been in Thailand for 3 years pursuing Muay Thai, but my heart is set on western boxing, so I’ll be seeing if I can continue training as a boxer here and fighting pure boxing matches. I might occasionally switch back to Muay Thai and test out my hands! So expect articles covering these topics and my own progress with both Muay Thai and Western boxing.

You’ll be seeing a lot of great fitness, nutritional, and surviving-in-thailand guides  from me on this site!

Fight History

Karate (ok, yes it doesn’t count for fighting, but I’ve gained an understanding on how NOT to fight from this)

  • Karate point contact tournaments as a kid (many)

Submission Wrestling (NoGi BJJ)

    • Tigerbalm 2006
    • Tigerbalm 2007 — First Place (Gold) in the 140lb division (watch here)

A no-gi jujitsu tournament I entered for Western Canada back in 2007:

MMA

    • Tigerbalm 2006 Pankration/MMA: Second Place (Silver)
    •  Western Canada 2007 Tigerbalm Pankration/MMA: First Place (Gold) (watch fights here).

Muay Thai

7 Muay Thai fights, Bangla Stadium, Phuket Thailand (7-1 record)

You can watch my first ever (messy!) Muay Thai fight in Thailand here. Straight from MMA to Muay Thai; it’s hard to loose the messy MMA habits when switching over to pure Muay Thai:

Here’s my fourth fight:

And my 7th fight that I lost to a guy about 10 kilos bigger.

Western Boxing

1 Western Boxing fight (Thailand). Lost this fight by decision, but I don’t know if we can count it as an official match though as the guy was 90 kilos while I was 60 kilos.

You can watch my first western boxing fighter here where I go up against a much bigger  guy in a local atmospheric thai stadium:

About Author

Ben has been living, training, and fighting in Thailand for the past 3 years. He has fought in a number of different combat arts such as MMA, BJJ, Muay Thai, and Western Boxing. Ben follows the latest fitness and nutrition research and is especially interested in how it can apply to combat sports to improve a fighter's performance in the ring. You can read Ben's full bio page here.

23 Comments

  1. ktmamalio@gmail.com'

    I also trained in Thailand (Koh Samui) and I agree w/ your article about losing weight through Muay Thai. Diet is very important and strength exercises. Anyhoo, I will share your site to my friends who likes MMA. Thank you!

  2. lokate@home.nl'

    I am a54 year old martial artist form The Netherlands, so sory for my bad Englisch. Since the age off 15 I have practice all kind off martial arts. Since I dont compete anymore I try to focus on real life situations.
    Of course I want to be in as good shape as I can but true Internet I am quit confused about strengthtraining and conditioning.

    Off course I have a full time job, family etc so I dont have hours a day to train. But I like your article about strengthtraining. The problem is that I dont have any room to put a barbell at home.

    I can do pull-ups, dips, I have some weighted plates that I can do in a backpack for extra weight on the pull-ups and dips, I have 2 kettlebells (20 and 24 kilo) and a heavy sandbag about 45 kilo.

    Off course I have a bag to kick and punch but I dont know what to do to get stronger with the things that I have.
    Same with conditioning, some say you have to run, others say its a waist off time. It seems that you have a lott off knowledge. Could you give me some guidelines were to start or a sort off basic weekly workout schedule?

    Sorry for asking but as I said, it seems to me that you know a lott about it so I hope you dont mind. And can you mail me at my emailadres? Because I am not such a computernerd, I can check my mail and thats about it 🙂

    Sincerally

    Wim Lokate

    • With strength training they key is two things:

      1) constancy

      2) steady increase of weighed resistance (i.e. you need proper weights like barbells and dumbels that you can keep adding weight on from week to week)

      I do not recommend the ‘training from home’ route when you start off. If you are serious about getting into shape, you need to put yourself in an environment where you are going to push yourself and one that has the right tools available.

      I’ve never been a believer when it comes to people saying ‘they don’t have time’ to workout. Everyone can find time to watch a couple hours of TV, go eat nice food at restaurants, play some vids, or go out on the weekends. But when it comes to putting in 30 minutes to 1 hour a couple times a week for fitness/weights, people suddenly don’t have time! You have to evaluate what’s important then MAKE the time for it.

      It’s beyond the scope here to give you a personalized training schedule. But if you are serious, I would join a fitness gym and put in 3 times a week lifting weights (read up on Ripple Toes STARTING STRENGTH ROUTINE/GUIDE for a specific weight routine that will get you strong– do a search for it). For cardiovascular fitness, I would run for 20-40 minutes 3x a week OR go attend Muay Thai training classes 3-4x a week (and maybe do a run 1-2x a week in addition to really bump fitness). Between the strength training and the cardio, you will get fit in a couple months, more than you’ve ever been

  3. lokate@home.nl'

    Hello Ben, thank you very much for reacting. I just wonder, why I cant use the training at home workouts from this site. It seems like a very solid routine.

    And I dont have the place to put a barbell or bench, arent there any solutions to do a strength workout with the things I have?
    I read that Buakaw uses only bodyweight exercises. So maybay I dont get as srong as with weights but I am in a good shape (not overweighted orso), I can run 5 km without any trouble and I know that I wont be the strongest without heavy weights. But I still want to be/stay in a good overal shape, better then the average guy. So arent there any solutions for my problem without joing the gym because with the hours I work its not possible to go to a gym, we only have 2 here in town.

    Again thanks for reacting, hope you can do that one more time

    Sincerally

    Wim

    • You certainly can use the workout guide I gave at home…IF you have the weight sets. It’s definitely a good idea to strength train when you are older. After the age of 35 men lose around 1-2 percent of their muscle mass per year. This can be stopped and reversed if you lift weights.

      To do an effective strength training regimen, you don’t need any fancy machines or to go to a gym specifically (though, if you are the type of person who finds they NEED to go to a gym environment to be consistent, then you should). All you need really would be a 20 kilo (45lb) BARBELL and a set of weights to add. And a solid area (i.e. not a good idea if you are on the top floor of a house or in an apartment with a wood floor!). You can use the barbell to DEADLIFT, barbel curl, Rows, and Overhead Press. You won’t be able to do Benchpress or squats, but if you get a set of dumbells and a workbench, you could replace the Barbell bench press moves with dumbell bench presses.

      So basically, yes, IF you get a barbell with weights, you can replace 70 percent of the core workouts for a good strength training session. If you get dumbells + a bench, you could do everything except barbel squats.

      So if you can use your at home weight kit to lift (using those guides I gave) AT LEAST 2 times (maybe 3 if you can swing it, but 2 will be ok) a week and do runs 2-3 time a week, you will get pretty damn fit over 4-6 months. Do it right and you will transform your body within a year — especially if you manage your diet (read my How to Lose Weight and Transform your Body article).

      hope that helps.

      Ben

  4. lokate@home.nl'

    Hello Ben, great! thanks for the answers again. One thing I dont understand, in your article at home training you dont talk about strengthtraining, just start with running, shadowboxing, heavy bag kicking and punching and at the end do some push-ups, pull-ups, burpees.
    But do you mean to do that workout 2-3 times a week and train strength 2 times a week?

    And the strength routine you mentioned is Starting strength? I think I have to order some weights but I will take yuor advice and invest in them.

    But just to be sure if I get it right could you answer this for the last time? Dont woryy I wont stalk you with mails, I just want to understand it right.

    And last question I promise, what are good guidelines for sets and reps for the pull-ups, push-ups, burpees and sit-ups? And do you advice to do them as circuit?

    Sincerally

    Wim

    • I’m specifically talking about strength training 2x a week. The makes you stronger, puts muscle on your frames, builds up your slow twitch muscle fibers, and optimizes your Central Nervous System connections.This is the STRENGTH TRAINING aspect of your fitness workout. Yes, some people don’t touch weights and ONLY do cardio types of training workouts (i.e only do Muay Thai, MMA, some other sport or just riding a bike, running or some physical activity that bumps your heart rate for a period of time).

      To work both your Strength and your Cardio, you should do both strength training and cardio workouts during the week.

      I won’t get into it specifically about why you should do Strength Training even if you do sports — if PURE cardio and endurance are what you want, then Strength Training is not a must. But it can bring a lot of benefits to the table, even if you only want to work on your cardio.

      So I recommend you strength train 2-3x a week. 3 is better than 2 if you are starting off, but 2 will work. For a routine, follow Starting Strength by Rippletoe is a good one. Or you can look at the RTP routine.

      As far as your cardio, you should do 2-3 times a week if you can, each session anywhere from 30 minutes straight (say running, skipping rope, fast riding a bike) OR an elongated activity that has periods of intense activity followed by a break for a couple minutes, such as sprinting or hitting the heavy bag as hard as you can for 5 rounds, 3 minutes per round followed by 1 minute break each round. You can go to Muay Thai class, boxing class or MMA class as your cardio OR you can do something like running a couple times a week OR for even better fitness (this takes time though and you will be tired) do both a couple times a week.

      If you have room to install a heavy bag, THEN you can ALSO spend time doing cardiovascular workouts at your house by hitting the bag. If you really can’t go to say a Muay Thai gym and you want to do your fitness at home and you DO NOT care about learning proper technique (because you won’t, training at home — you need to be in a actual muay thai gym to learn technique).

      =DIY Home Routine=

      Strength Training: Do Ripple Toe’s Starting Strength Routine 2-3 times a week OR do the RPT routine 2x a week: Monday and Friday or Monday/Wed/Friday.

      Cardio Training:
      On the days you do NOT lift weights 2-3 times a week, do this circuit:

      You can do 15-30 minutes up jump rope, at a fast pace if 15 minutes, or slower paced if 20-30 minutes
      You can do 5 rounds of bag work (15 minutes) with 1 or 2 minutes of a break between rounds. You can do 20-30 pushups or situps between rounds
      You can do 15 – 20 minutes of shadow boxing in the mirror.

      Cardivascular Endurance
      2 times a week, go for a nice long run outside, Run should be 35 minutes to 1 hour.

      If you do the above, you can get fit at home without going to a Muay Thai class or doing a sport. And you can get strong(er) too.

      If people have an interest, I can write and article about Home Workouts, since I seem to be getting some questions about it.

      Cheers

  5. lokate@home.nl'

    Hello Ben, thanks you very much for that great explanation. I must say that I dont need to much training on technique. Its not to brag but I practice martial arts since the age off 15, started with karate, pencjac silat, kung-fu, boxing, kick-boxing, full contact karate. By the most schools I stay about a year or 3 and then moved on to learn new things.
    Right now, because I dont compete anymore, I try to focus on real streetfight situations, in my case its Jeet Kune Do.
    Off course I want to be in top fighting shape, I think the way you look at the foto’s I have seen thats more the look I am looking for. I mean, I dont want to be a bodybuilder or a strongman. I dont have the age for that and it is not what I am training for.
    I just want to be in good shape because 2 times a week, at night, I train a group off adults the things that I think will work in a real streetfight situation.
    Because off thet to I want to be in shape, I dont like all these old teachers who say what you have to do but cant do that themself.
    I think when you teach you have to be a sort off roll model, so looking and beiing in shape is very important.

    I get your point about cardovasculair workout and strengthtraining. You talk bout RPT routine but were can I find that?

    And were do you recoment to practice the punches and kicks because I think even if you can kick and punch good you have to still train them. Do you think that can be done before a cardiovasculair workout?
    Because what I did most off the time was start with a run and when I cam back I practice my kicks and punches and then did some rounds on the heavy bag or shadowboxing.

    I will see what I can do with the strengthtraining because what I said, right now I only have a barbell with maybay 40 kilo and that isnt much. And I dont have a bench to but maybay I can do floor bench presses, waht do you think?

    Last question, you read a lott about kettlebels these days, they say that they are better than barbell or dumbell work for martial artist because off the same off these bells.
    Do you think kettlebells could be a good tool to get stronger or do you think its more a conditiong tool?

    Thanks again very much for explaning so much, I think most off the things you say I can use, its only the strength part that gives me some problems here>
    And maybay I neglect my abs a little bit in m training. its because I read so much that sit-ups arent any good and the plank is better or hanging leg raises etc. that I just dont do them because I dont know.
    What do yuo think are good exercises for the abs? When I teach most off the time we do sit-ups and leg raises and planks for 1-2 minutes. But maybay there are better exercises.

    And I like the idea to write a article about home training. I think A lott off people would like that and can learn form it.

    One last thing, maybay you think that if that guy, me, is training JKD why does he want to know how Muy Thai guys train. First its because you can read everywere, on most off the forums, how guys train, if it is judo, boxing, karate, mma etc. But if you ask JKD guys they say that they dont spend a lott off time on supplementary training because JKD ids efective and yuo dont need much strength to kick a guy in his groin or knees. I dont get that that because even Bruce Lee said that strength is very important for martial artist and conditoning to. And sometimes yuo read that guys spend 3-4 times a week 1-2 hours on strengthtraining.
    Thats strange and way to much, when supplementary training have to be only 20% orso of your total training time you have to spend hours, maybay even 40-50 hours on your art.

    But the most important thing is that I like the way muy Thai guys train. The train hard, explosive end effectif.
    So even it isnt JKD I think it is a great way to get in top shape for every martial art.

    Okay, will end now, sorry for this long mail. And thanks again for helping me out here.

    Take care

    Sincerally

    Wim

    • For RPT routine breakdown and explanation: rippedbody.jp/reverse-pyramid-training. This article talks about a 3 day split. You can modify it to 2 days by tinkering around with it. Ripple Toe’s starting strength (do a web search, it’s the most popular weight routine out there for beginners) is another good routine. However, both these routines (especially rippletoe) put a lot of emphasis on squats, which you can’t properly do at home without a squat rack. You’d have to substitute Dumbbell Squats (look up how to do these on google), which are not as good, but…

      Kettlebell workouts are popular these days, especially with the MMA crowd. I don’t work them though and if I was to give you advice, it wouldn’t be from personal experience or any sort of expertise in that area. I do know Kettlebells can be used for Explosive Power type workouts, circuit training, or power endurance. However, for PURE maximal strength, which is what I’m talking about here, Kettlebells are not the right tool.

      If I recall, Bruce Lee spent a LOT of time doing strength training (and some bodybuilding). How much strength training + cardio you want to do depends on how much time you have and how ‘fit’ you want to get. There is a big difference between trying to get into Fight Shape for a 5 round Muay Thai fight or just trying to get good overall fitness, strength, and cardio. You can put as much or as little effort as you want. For a base level of good fitness, I would say doing CARDIOvascular activity 3-4 times a week is fine. Do strength training 2-3 times a week and you’ll be even better off. Manage your diet right and your body will transform if you stick with it for 6 months to 1 year.

      I’m not familiar with the Bas Rutten CD’s, though I think the guy is a pretty funny character! As for workouts — I stick to the basics. There a lot of fancy ‘diets’ and ‘workouts’ out there, but in my experience, it’s really the basic workouts (deadlifts, squats, bench press etc) tuned for strength (low rep, heavy weight) that provide tangible results you can see — physically in your body and strength wise you can see week to week.

      Good luck with it!

      Ben

  6. lokate@home.nl'

    one last thing, do you know the Bas Rutten workout cd’s?
    It seems like for example the all round fighting cd could be avery good and effectiv workout.
    I am just curious about what you think about that workout.

  7. lokate@home.nl'

    Hello Ben, thanks man! I think I have it all. The only little problem now is were to put my barbell, bench etc.
    That will take some time, I think meanwhile I have to do with weighted pull-ups, dips, push-ups etc.
    Were can I find that: rippedbody.jp/reverse-pyramid-training article? is that on this site?

    Thanks again, you have explained very goog and it makes a lott off sense.
    Take care

    Sincerally

    Wim

    P.s. Bas Ruten is indeed a funny guy and his workouts are very cool, a combination of bag work (or shaodow boxing) with exercises in between, like push-ups, sit-ups, bicep curls, sprawls, jumping squats etc.
    The all round fighting cd is about 28 minutes and when you put all the effort in it you have a realy good workout.
    The only problem is that he shout combinations and I like to do my own combinations 😉

  8. ejakovich@yahoo.com'

    Hi Ben
    Great post mate.
    You’ve mentioned that you love your Western Boxing – do you know of any gyms in Thailand that just have a Boxing regime ? I’ve been to several gyms in Thailand but haven’t come across one as yet ? Does Sinbi have a boxing program ?

    • Boxing is best pursued in Bangkok where there are *some* gyms that specialize in it more.

      Chuwatana, for example, in Bangkok is known for putting a lot of emphasis on their hands in Muay Thai. They also ONLY do boxing sparring for the most part and a lot of their guys have good hands.

      I know a few established boxers have come down there to train for pure boxing and have fought boxing matches in rajadernerm stadium.

      There is another gym somewhere in Isaan where the Olympic Boxing Prospects train — I can’t remember the name of that one. But you may have to be Thai and part of the army and/or get an invite to train there.

      Over in Phuket a number of the tourist gyms have boxing coaches I believe — Lion Muay Thai, Phuket Top Team.

      Sinbi does not have a boxing program — they spar 3 times a week boxing, but they don’t teach it specifically there.

      Hope that helps.

  9. Gerardojkelly@gmail.com'

    Hi there. Great blog. I’ve a question. There was another blog on this site before a guy wrote about becoming Paleo and how he lost a lot of weight for fighting. He had before and after pics too. I can’t seem to find it again though. Would you have a link?

    Thanks

    Ger

    • Hey, don’t know it. Paleo is a great way to lose weight. However, the lower carb intake can make it difficult if you are training for a fight and some people respond differently to low carb diets.

  10. gavinhurlimann@gmail.com'

    Nice Ben! – Miguel Cotto v Canelo Alvarez, Puerto Rico v Mexico. All the ingredients for a “bite down on the mouth guard” and keep unloading shots to the death. My head is saying Alvarez to win by KO, but my heart is with Cotto. Your thoughts?…..

    • Saw this too late. I was pretty sure Canelo would take it 100 percent. He’s just a better overall striker, better technically, and has better timing than Cotto. Cotto has a tough chin and likes to bang — so I knew it would probably be a good slug fest.

      Right now, I’m looking forward to a Canelo vs GGG. Now that’s something I’m chomping on the bit.

      My second biggest boxing fight I’d love to watch would be vasyl lomachenko vs Guillermo Rigondeaux. Rigondeaux is by far the MOST UNDERRATED boxer in the sport right now. He’s technically the best boxer in the sport right now, arguably even better than Mayweather with his defensive skills. He puts on a boxing clinic every time he fights. But as a defensive fighter, he fights in such a way that it’s not a crowd pleasing affair (like GGG who impresses with his knockouts). But man, what a boxer. Lomanchenko is also one of the best defensive boxers in the sport with sick timing and footwork. What a fight that will be, if it happens.

  11. kennyk616@gmail.com'

    Do they not care about weight classes in Thailand? Why are most of your fights (Muay Thai and Boxing) against people that are bigger? I expect 135 lbs to be the most common weight class in Muay Thai so it’s not like in the US where it may be hard to find an opponent?

    • At the high level, yes they absolutely care. You’ll find guys in the stadiums who won’t fight if there is an ounce of weight difference on the weigh in day. Those are the proper, high level fights (channel 7, lumpinee, rachadernmum, or a big ‘betting’ fight at a local stadium).

      For the regular fights that happen in ‘tourist’ areas, between foreigner and foreigner or thai vs foreigner, or sometimes thai vs thai, people don’t weigh in. The promoters just eyeball it roughly.

      So you can end up fighting a few weight classes up, if you are unlucky. Truth be told though, the promoters usually try to make it somewhat fair. They might have a brand new guy who’s 5 or 15 lbs heavier than you, but then you have years of experience. Another sort of match up might be one guy is heavier, but ‘fatter’ while the lighter guy is ripped. I’ve had this one multiple times.

      I have seen some pretty batch matches though with some guys fighting guys 40-60lbs heavier — with both fighters ripped.

      The reason why for the average low level fights in tourist areas they don’t impose weight requirements is that it would make fighting more tedious. A lot of guys wouldn’t be able to make weight (remember, a lot of the fighters come here for 1-2 weeks then have a drop in fight). There is a lot of fight tourism here in Thailand and that sort of thing would ruin the money making machine.

      For high level fights, weight is always imposed though.

  12. buttercookieman@gmail.com'

    Holy cow, Ben!
    That weight difference, bro 🙂
    I bet it was one hell of experience I’m sure..

    I guess I’ll be sticking in this awesome site for a long time.
    It’s hard to find a fellow boxer and also a splendid writer and a fine explainer, I tip my hat to you my friend.
    Keep up the good work and more.

    PS:
    I’m visiting Chiang Mai to visit my friend and also to visit dinosaur excavation site next January.
    Hopefully I can up my skill level a few notch during my stay there.

    Cheers,
    Fey

    • Glad you like the site mate, and good to hear from a fellow follower of the sweet science.

      Chiang Mai is an awesome place, if you haven’t been there yet, you’ll have a blast. Some good training up there too!

      Best!

      ben

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