Here’s How You Can Develop Explosiveness And Power For Muay Thai

Muay Thai is a fast-paced sport full of explosive and well-placed, powerful strikes. Whether it’s a punch, a kick, an elbow, or a knee, learning to throw explosive strikes that pack a ton of power is a favorable skill set for all Muay Thai practitioners. 

Regardless of how long you’ve been training Muay Thai, you can certainly improve the explosiveness of your strikes and the power behind them. Even a small amount of improvement in power will make a difference in the ring.

If you are looking to take your power and explosiveness up a notch in your Muay Thai game, be sure to check out these tips: 


1) Drill At A Variety Of Speeds

muay thai drills

When aiming to develop the power in your muscles to support explosive movement, it’s important to drill things at a variety of speeds. The concept is much like learning to run at a faster pace. In running, if you want your long-distance, slower runs to improve in speed, then you need to practice shorter, faster runs, too. 

In Muay Thai, if you want to improve the speed and explosiveness of your strikes, consider utilizing slow, technical movements, as well. Practicing at a variety of speeds, even slow speeds, will help you to grow your power and explosiveness. 

This could look many different ways, including: 

  • Drilling at a slower pace with your partner.
  • Shadowboxing slowly, forcing your muscles to support your movements while maintaining proper technique.
  • Hitting a heavy bag at a slower pace.

Regardless of how you choose to do it, slow down your movements, force your muscles to support the movement at a slower pace, and experience more explosive power when you throw your strikes at your normal speed, power, and pace.


2) Practice Fast Starts

nong-o teep

Practicing fast starts to your movements will help you to develop your explosive power. There are many ways to do this, both by utilizing Muay Thai strikes as well as regular fitness movements. Try out some of these fast-start ideas to help develop your explosiveness:

  • Pick a strike, such as a jab or a low kick, and have a partner call out “go” at various intervals. The second you hear the word “go” you should be exploding with that strike towards the bag, pad, or in the air. Your goal should be to land the strike as quickly as possible when you hear the word “go,” and to quickly be ready for the next one, too.
  • Get set up to sprint a short distance. Have a partner call the word “go” and immediately take off in a sprint. The distance here isn’t important, but rather, the starting explosiveness should be the focus. Pour all of your efforts into getting yourself running at your fastest speed as quickly as possible.
  • Choose an exercise movement like a burpee, a sprawl, or a jumping lunge or squat. Play the same game as before, utilizing the word “go” to mark when you need to explode into the movement. You can add on to this particular one by adding a jab-cross combination at the end of each movement (so for example, each call out would result in a burpee, jab, cross, or a jumping squat, jab, cross). Again, focus on explosive movement and completing the movement as quickly as possible. 

Practicing fast starts is a great way to increase your explosiveness by training your body to respond quickly when needed. 


3) Refine Your Technique

muay thai students kick padwork

It should come as no surprise that refining your technique will enable you to throw your strikes with better accuracy, precision, and power. A poorly thrown strike will be difficult to improve upon. Taking the time to dive into your technique will allow you to add more power to your strikes. 

Ask a coach to watch you throw your strikes and give you feedback as to whether there are any small tweaks you can make to improve your technique. Each small adjustment will give you a bit more opportunity to improve your game in regard to power.

Alternatively, you can take time on your own as you slow down your movements while you shadowbox in a mirror. Look at each movement. Are your hips turning like they are supposed to? Is your hand landing in the right position? Where are your feet and how are they moving? Looking at each detail of your technique will help you to add in the necessary power when you need it.


4) Lifting Weights

nong o deadlift

Cross-training is a valuable resource for Muay Thai, and especially so for adding power and explosiveness to your strikes and movements. Adding a weight lifting program to your weekly training routine will allow your muscles to grow, giving you more resources for adding in power when you want and need it. Even a short routine added in once or twice a week will give you valuable strength training that will immediately be used in Muay Thai. 

As an added benefit, weight lifting will help to bulletproof your body, as strength training is an ideal way to reduce injuries. When dealing with power in Muay Thai, you are also dealing with the impact. Your joints, including your shoulders, hips, knees, and elbows, are more at risk of injury while throwing powerful shots. 

Give them the strength they need to stay healthy and injury-free by adding weight lifting to your schedule. The cross-training is bound to improve your Muay Thai game, your overall health, and give you more power to pull from for your striking. 


Improve Your Explosiveness And Power

Improving your explosiveness and power should be on your list of Muay Thai goals. No matter the length of your time spent training, you can always be a little bit more powerful and explosive. Training at various speeds, including slowing your movements down, practicing fast starts in a variety of ways, refining your technique, and lifting weights will all help you to develop and grow the power and explosiveness that will help you to take your Muay Thai game up a notch. 


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