If you want to see an MMA fighter who displays beautiful Muay Thai striking skills, Dejdamrong Sor Amnuaysirichoke is the best in the world. When it comes to Muay Thai credentials, nobody can surpass his impressive resume.
Throughout his career Dejdamrong amassed over 300 + Muay Thai fights, holding 3 Lumpinee titles in two different weight divisions. After retiring from Muay Thai at the age of 35, Dejdamrong decided to pursue a career in MMA at the world class Evolve MMA training center located in Singapore.
He has adapted his Muay Thai game to the world of MMA, utilizing a lot of low kicks, and counter striking techniques when he fights. Dejdamrong showcases how to use Muay Thai effectively when applied to MMA striking.
If you want to see a breakdown of some of his skills in the ring, you can watch this excellent highlight video put together by Lawrence Kenshin.
Dejdamrong recently suffered his first defeat at the hands of a Japanese submission artist. Given his vast amount of fighting experience, I imagine one loss isn’t going to have a big impact on his mental state.
In preparation for his upcoming fight, I had a chance to ask Dejdamrong a few questions about his training camp, and his mental state going into the next fight.
Interview with Dejdamrong Sor Amnuaysirichoke
You started competing in MMA at the age of 35, after you finished your Muay Thai career. How has your past Muay Thai experience helped you transition into the world of MMA?
It has helped a lot. I use Muay Thai a lot in my MMA game. All my Muay Thai weapons are dangerous in MMA. Muay Thai movements can even help with avoiding takedowns and some of the Muay Thai clinch concepts can be used on the ground.
How much of your training is spent working on your ground game vs. striking game? Since you already know striking, is most of your time spent rolling/wrestling on the ground before a fight?
No, not at all. Throughout the week, my training focus is divided among the different aspects of MMA – striking, grappling, wrestling, and much more. They’re all important and any discipline can be used in a fight.
What is the biggest Difference Between Striking in MMA vs Muay Thai? Do you use more Boxing in MMA because opponents can grab your kicks and go for takedowns?
The main different is the ground game, of course. It adds another dimension to the fight. Muay Thai is more about fighting on your feet. With my Muay Thai experience, I’m always looking to use my striking skills and showcase my country’s martial art, but if the fight goes to the ground, I’m also comfortable and confident in my abilities to submit my opponents.
Physical Preparations before a Fight
When you have an MMA fight coming up, take me through your fight training preparations. What does your weekly schedule look like before you step into the ring?
I train twice a day, mixing up grappling, striking, wrestling and MMA. I’m very thankful that I get the chance to train alongside all the World Champions at Evolve MMA, like Michelle Nicolini, Leandro “Brodinho” Issa, Alex Silva, Bruno Pucci, Teco Shinzato, Yodsanan Sityodtong, and so many more.
How long does your training camp look like when you are heading into an MMA fight?
I train throughout the year, so it doesn’t feel like I have a lengthy training camp. When I have an upcoming fight, I’ll turn up the intensity about a month or so earlier.
What is your diet like when you are fight training? Do you have a nutrition plan that you follow or do you just follow your normal routine?
I have a pretty healthy diet year-round, but closer to the fight, I’ll monitor how much I eat and keep an eye on my weight. The most important thing is to eat clean, and stay away from junk food.
Dealing with Mental Pressure
In your last fight, you lost against a very skilled Japanese submission fighter. How are you feeling coming into your next fight, knowing that you were submitted in your last one?
It was disappointing to lose my belt to Naito, especially in front of my home crowd, but I became even more determined to train harder and improve. I’m very excited to return to the cage, in Thailand once more.
Because you are such a decorated Muay Thai champion, do you feel more pressure because some people feel like you represent the sport of Muay Thai?
Not pressure. I feel more honored to represent Thailand and our national sport of Muay Thai on a global stage.
How do you deal with pressure before your fight? Do you visualize the outcome of the fight or do you focus on anything in particular? What is going on in your mind leading up to the fight?
I just calm my mind and try to stay relaxed. My preparation and hard work in training give me confidence, knowing that I am going out there and able to perform at 100 percent.
Before a Muay Thai or MMA Fight, do you experience fear? Fear of not performing well, fear of getting injured, or letting others down? How do you cope with that fear that most fighters experience before a fight?
It’s not fear that I experience. The way I see it, it’s my duty to fight and perform – for myself, for the people depending on me. As I said earlier, I calm myself and come to terms with this duty.
How much longer can we expect to see you competing in the MMA ring? Do you have any specific goals you want to accomplish before you retire from the sport?
I want to compete as long as my body allows me to. My goal is to win back the ONE world title.
Thanks for the interview! We wish you the best of luck in your upcoming fight against Joshua Pacio.