Choosing the Best Muay Thai Gear
Choosing the best muay thai gear can be difficult when you are starting out so in this short article I’ll try and offer up some tips and advice from a guy who’s been involved in combat sports for over 25 years. At Fightstorepro.com we draw on this experience and only stock what we believe are great products for the price so here I will do my best to explain why we recommend what we do and give some positive advice to guys and gals who are in that crucial first year of training on what Thai boxing equipment to go for and why!
In Muay Thai or K1 Style kick boxing there are essentially three items which are must haves and two more which if not necessary on day 1 will become so very quickly.
These are in order of importance:
- Mouth Guard
- Boxing Gloves
- Thai Style Shin Guards
- A Groin Protector
I’m looking at this from a point of view that you can attend a class without the last two but to train at all is difficult in most classes without the first three!
Any Boil and Bite mouth guard will stop your teeth clashing on stray blows but investing £10-15 on a decent one is money well spent!
Boxing Gloves for Muay Thai Kick Boxing.
There are a lot of options out there now and prices go from around £35 to over £100. The average price is approximately £75 for good quality professional level gloves. Its beyond the reach of this article to go into vast amounts of detail but indeed we have done on the Fightstorepro blog check out this video with Juan Cerventes and Myself for an in depth look at the options.
One of the things worth pointing out here is that if you are serious about training it’s pointless buying cheap gloves. The old adage of buy cheap buy twice comes into play here with the added issue of buy cheap potentially harm yourself and/or others. Take into account your own physical size when choosing gloves and also note that many of the reviews on the internet are written by people who frankly haven’t the faintest clue about what they are talking about.
If you need a real budget glove (under £50) then take a look at the Carbon Claw ARMA or Aero Range. We looked for years to find a glove as good as this in the budget bracket and there are plenty out there which don’t come close!
Thai Shin guards.
As with boxing gloves there is little point in buying cheap versions here as they often neither do the job or last long enough to heal your bruised and battered shins! Invest the extra twenty or thirty quid and buy quality from the off! It used to be that shin guards were actually called shin and instep as the small bones of the foot are covered by this piece of kit too but nowadays its assumed the instep is part of the shin guard (although if you look hard enough you can still find shins without the instep although I wouldn’t recommend this for beginners!
Again its hard to get into too much detail here but check out the video we did on this subject! Its 20 minutes long and pretty in depth so if you want the real lowdown then this could well be it!
Muay Thai Shin Guards need strong padding over the shin and companies such as Fairtex, Revgear and Top king all started adding a second layer to their shin protection over the bone which was a good idea. The material on shin guards is less important than that off gloves and there has been a move toward synthetics in the last 5 years. Fairtex now only make synthetic shin guards whilst Twins, Revgear, Top King and Danger all make both options. The materials of these better brands are now so good that leather is looking like becoming a thing of the past for this piece of kit.
Sizing is a constant issue as most the brands are not uniform in their sizing but as a general rule Medium shins will cover upto around 5’8, Large upto 6’1 and over that go XL however it might be sensible to look at how leggy you are and have a margin of error on this.
The new Danger Evolution or Revgear Original Shin guard offers an excellent blend of protection with lightweight comfort so they make my top pick for shin guards at under £65 you can’t go wrong but also check out Fairtex Double Padded and Twins SGL3.
If you really need cheap shins my advice is go for the MTG amateur shins at £10 then save up for some good ones! The protection afforded is enough to do light drills whilst you are improving then buy the better ones as soon as you start sparring. Most Shins at £30 are no better than these so you may as well save your cash and wait to buy the real deal!
Shorts and a Groin Guard
Essentially Shorts are a fashion thing although be careful throwing high kicks in your summer shorts from hemmys as they may well split from seam to seam; You can use MMA or Thai shorts to train Muay Thai but most plump for the traditional look and buy the authentic style shorts perfect for those roundhouse kicks. Prices go from £15 for cheap Pakistan copies to £50+ for authentic Thai made sparkly versions but essentially they all do the same job.
If you buy Authentic Thai shorts note THAI Sizing is very different and an XL is roughly a 32″ waist!!!
Groin protection is again pretty straight forward. A standard Kick boxing groin guard from Adidas or Revgear will set you back under £20 whilst a Thai Steel cup which is more awkward to put on but will essentially make the crown jewels bullet proof about the same.
Other Considerations for Thai Boxing Equipment
Some people like to use head guards some people don’t; If you are doing heavy sparring then it may well become necessary however this article assumes a relative beginner so at this stage heavy sparring should not be on the cards. We often find guys with professional jobs buy head guards to avoid bruising at work the next day so consider this if that is applicable to you!
Check out our store www.fightstorepro.com and if you want any advice on what you should be buying then get in touch!