The best Muay Thai conditioning drills for beginners are simply practicing Muay Thai. Work pads, hit the heavy bag and spar and your Muay Thai conditioning will improve dramatically. However, there are other drills and exercises that can be mixed in your practices to help your conditioning improve more quickly. Just don't let them interfere with your actual Muay Thai training!
- Cardio drills. Muay Thai is one of the most demanding sports in terms of cardio requirements. Anything you can do to give yourself a bigger gas tank is worthwhile. Road work is your best bet: running. It's not fun or exciting, but it is important. Don't make the mistake of thinking an hour of leisurely jogging will give you all the cardio you need for Muay Thai, though. You will be far better served by no more than two or three miles at a stretch; run as fast as possible. Intervals of sprints and slower jogs to recover will best prepare you for the stop-and-start intensity of Muay Thai.
- Clinch drills. Although the most draining aspect of Muay Thai is the strain on your lungs from the sport's frantic pace, it is not the only aspect for which you must prepare. The clinch can suck the speed and power out of your punches if you are not prepared for it Kettle bell workouts, particularly swings and upright rows, and resistance band exercises will give your shoulders functional strength for Muay Thai clinch fighting.
- Lower body drills. It doesn't matter how fast your hands are and how good your cardio is if your legs give out on you. The clinch can be almost as wearing on your legs as on your shoulders, not to mention the strain of constant footwork and movement (and taking Thai kicks to the legs over and over again doesn't help them hold up, either). In addition to your roadwork, you should mix in jump rope routines, box jumps and lower body resistance band training.
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