Tag Archives: Lumpinee Stadium

How do Muay Thai Fighters earn in Thailand?

If you study of Muay Thai, chances are you do it for the love and not the money. More than likely you’ve heard since day one… “This sport isn’t about becoming rich.” But still, most Muay Thai fighters are struggling to get that break, to land the fight that will put them on the map to finally score a big day payday.

But how much is that payday exactly? In MMA, we see great champions are making huge amounts of cash and even huger sponsorship deals. More than likely, those at the top of the sport are at least earning in the six figure range, sometimes more. So how do these contracts compare to a top of the line Muay Thai fighter, holding a belt in the prestigious Lumpinee or Rajadamnern stadiums?

A current Lumpinee champion makes roughly 60,000 baht per fight (Around £1,200) Only after the gym takes their cut of profits, fighters are typically left with around 20,000 baht for themselves (£400). Doesn’t seem fair or much does it?!

There are ways for Thai fighters to earn significantly more money through gym bets. You might have seen certain fights advertised as having a 1,000,000 baht prize placed on them. These are usually large bets put on particular fights for gym owners to make an extra bit of money if they feel like their guy has a significant advantage going in. If a fighter invests his own money into the bet, it’s possible that he will receive a cut of the earnings. Of course, this is a very dangerous game. Losing means sacrificing an already minuscule paycheck, and perhaps being forced to fight more frequently to make up the difference.

Despite Thailand being a land where the cost of living is much lower than much of the western world, £400 per fight is still not very much money, especially at the highest possible level of the sport. Not only that, but the 60,000 baht pay day is only for top of the line competitors that have already established names for themselves.

Fighters that aren’t champions usually receive somewhere between 10 and 15,000 baht (£200 – £300). It can vary depending on how much interest there is for a fight, betting, and other factors, but typically the price range stays within those two numbers.

For farang (foreign) fighters, the paydays are much less. A foreign fighter will earn between 2 and 5,000 baht per fight if they are competing at Lumpinee stadium. This comes out to less than £100 per match-up.

There is more demand for farangs in the outlying markets, like Phuket and Koh Samui. Foreigners can make significantly more in Bangla than anywhere else, because that’s what the gamblers and audience come to see.

The real market for Muay Thai lies outside Thailand. International fighters can often earn more than double what Lumpinee champions pull in, despite the quality of competition being much lower. It is not incredibly difficult for a decent Thai to make over 100,000 baht per fight. It’s also much easier for farang fighters to come by competition their own weight, at a price that allows them to live above the poverty line.

Because of the low pay for Thai boxing within Thailand, many former Lumpinee or Rajadamnern champions end up in demeaning or ill-fitting jobs after their careers are over. There is not enough money saved up to retire comfortably, nor do they have many skillsets beyond the scope of muay thai. To make a living, skilled nak muays absolutely must take up a coaching position. Finding a teaching position inside the country is difficult, considering the market is already flooded with extremely high level trainers. Going international is an option, but many former fighters don’t want to be away from their friends and families for extended periods of time.

Right now, gamblers in muay thai are making huge amounts of money off the fighters, who are seeing very little of it for their efforts. We can only hope that the future sees either a change in the wages for some of the greatest athletes in combat sports, or newer organizations give stadium fighters the amount of money we all know they are worth.

The World’s top Muay Thai Camps

Muay Thai is the national sport of Thailand, but it has become a global phenomenon with camps operating all over the world. A few Western fighters have started to make a name for themselves on the international scene. Even only a decade ago, it was almost unheard of for a foreign fighter to possess the skills good enough to win a title at Lumpinee Stadium or Rajdamnern Stadium. Thanks to trailblazing pioneers such as Rob Kaman and Ramon Dekkers in the 1980s, Muay Thai is now a global sport. While the Thais still dominate the game at the highest levels of Muay Thai in the world, the sport’s popularity has ignited across the globe.

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Thailand remains the heartland of the sport and no country can come close in terms of the quantity of elite level competitors which The Kingdom continually churns out. An estimated 5,000 professional Muay Thai camps are spread all over Thailand and are situated in virtually every town. Children start at a very young age such as 5-6 years old and Muay Thai is even taught in schools. In any given year, there are an estimated 250,000 to 300,000 elite professional Muay Thai fighters competing around the country. Only the very best 500 fighters or so in Thailand make it to the big stadiums like Lumpinee or Rajdamnern in Bangkok. And still, most fighters end up failing in the big leagues. The numbers are even worse for foreigners in terms of odds for success.  For this reason, it is no surprise that most of the top camps are in Thailand, but there are some notable exceptions due to widespread proliferation of Muay Thai knowledge.

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Here is a list of the world’s top Muay Thai destinations for authentic Muay Thai.

Evolve MMA

The Thai media in Thailand have crowned Evolve MMA’s Muay Thai instructor team as the greatest dream team of legends in history.  Evolve MMA in Singapore has the most decorated team of Muay Thai trainers found anywhere in the world, including camps in Thailand. It currently includes big-name legends of the sport like Namsaknoi Yudthagarngamtorn, Attachai Fairtex, Orono Wor Petchpun, and Nonthachai Sit O as well as an vast array of multiple-time Rajadamnern and Lumpinee champions including Muangfalek Kiatvichian, Chalee Sor Chaitamin, Saenghiran Lookbanyai and Dejdamrong Sor Amnuaysirichok, Singmanee Kaewsamrit, Chaowalith JockeyGym, and many others. It also houses many champion trainers from Sityodtong Camp.

Evolve MMA offers Muay Thai classes in Singapore for the complete beginner to the advanced Lumpinee-level professional fighter. If you are looking to learn Muay Thai in Singapore, Evolve MMA is arguably one of the best Muay Thai gyms in the world. If you are looking to compete and win in Lumpinee Stadium, Evolve MMA is worth a visit to sharpen your skills against some of the best in history.

Petchyindee

The Petchyindee gym has been one of the best in Thailand for several decades and a brand new location is currently under construction featuring state-of-the-art facilities. It will include accommodation for tourists. Historically, Petchyindee has not open to the general public, but it will be next year. It is already home to the Petchyindee stable of fighters which includes two of the best fighters of the decade in Sam-A Kaiyanghadao and Nong-O Kaiyanghadao while training is overseen by multiple time Lumpinee and Rajadmanern champion Sagat Petyindee.

Petchyindee also throws co-promotions at Lumpinee Stadium on a regular basis with their star fighters. Their fighters are well-known for their technical mastery of Muay Thai and are well-known as cardio machines. When it opens its door to foreign tourists, it is well worth a visit to see how one of the best camps in Thailand trains its legendary champions.

Sitsongpeenong

Sitsongpeenong is a camp that caters to Westerners with air conditioned, indoor facilities. However, do not be fooled by the luxurious settings. It has a world-class fight team which currently includes multiple-time tournament and title winner Kem Sitsongpeenong, current Thailand champion Sittichai Sitsongpeenong and former Lumpinee champion Thongchai Sitsongpeenong. It is a serious camp with serious Muay Thai. Fighters at Sitsongpeenong are known as very well-rounded with strong kicks and excellent punching power, a rarity in the world of Muay Thai. If you want to learn authentic Muay Thai, Sitsongpeenong is definitely one of the best.

There are facilities in both Bangkok and Phuket, catering to students of all levels and Sitsongpeenong regularly sends fighters to compete at all the main stadiums in Thailand with many of them highly ranked in their respective weight classes.

Singpatong

Despite being located on the outskirts of Phuket’s most notorious red light district, Singpatong has an excellent reputation and has helped launch the careers of top Thai and Western fighters with Pentai Sitnumnoi, Peneak Sitnumnoi and Damien Alamos all winning Lumpinee titles in recent years. Peneak was the 2011 ‘Fighter of the Year’ and the head coach, Numnoi Singpatong, has a crop of up and coming Thai youngsters coming through as well as being extremely open to Western fighters who want to come and train. The open atmosphere of this camp makes it a place to visit for the beginner and the serious fighter. Singpatong training is classic Thai-style with lots of roadwork, heavy bags, pads, and clinch work. Cardio is strongly emphasized at Singpatong.  You can learn excellent basics as well as advanced technique at Singpatong.

Sitmonchai

Located on the outskirts of Kanchanaburi, this Muay Thai camp is in a remote location, but is known for its laid-back atmosphere. However it is still home to some feared and respected fighters like Pornsaneh Sitmonchai, who has a reputation as being the most exciting Muay Thai contenders in Thailand today, and teenage prodigy Yodkhunpol Sitmonchai who recently secured a contract with international kickboxing organization Glory. Due to its remote location, the training is very spartan and hard. Roadwork is heavily emphasized with endless rounds of pad work and conditioning. The trainers at Sitmonchai have decades of experience at Lumpinee and Rajdamnern stadiums.  Do not expect special treatment as a visitor. The training is as tough as they come. If you want an immersive Muay Thai experience, Sitmonchai is one of the places to go.

Jitti Gym

Jitti Gym in Bangkok is owned by the well respected Jitti Tanongsak and while it isn’t known for producing Thai fighters it has helped launch the careers of some of the top Westerners in the sport including WBC and WMC champion Liam Harrison. Known for its family atmosphere, Jitti Gym is also home to Andy Thrasher who became the first ever non Thai to win a Toyota Marathon in 2011 and is welcoming to complete beginners as well as seasoned pros with basic accommodation available.

Tiger Muay Thai

Tiger Muay Thai is best known as a tourist destination for those who want a combination of training and fun on the beautiful island of Phuket.  The Muay Thai classes cater to students of all levels and the trainers include former Lumpinee champion Rattanachai Jadngooluem and former Rajadamnern champion Lamsongkram Chuwattana. It also has a very serious MMA program with elite competitors and instructors such as Roger Huerta and Brian Ebersole.

13 Coins

Attached to a large hotel in Bangkok, 13 Coins is run by the eccentric Mr Coke and is home to several top fighters with former ‘Fighter of the Year’ winners Saenchai PKSaenchaigym and Saengmanee Sor Tienpo both training here as well as Pakorn Sakyotin and western boxers like Kwanoichit 13coinsexpress and Pungluang Sor Singyu.

Lanna

Lanna Boxing Camp, better known in Thailand as “Kiat Busaba”, is a professional boxing camp in Thailand’s northern capital city of Chiang Mai. Owned and managed as a family concern,we have worked hard over several years together with our young Thai boxers to achieve success at the top level of competition as well as being considered one of the best Northern Muay Thai Training centres. In the pleasant surroundings of our camp, as we train everyday, we offer the opportunity for people to train professionally and gain insight and understanding of the ancient art of Muay Thai.

… and of course

Chao Phraya Muay Thai 😉

Chao Pyraya (Lincoln) in Lincoln is run by the well respected Kru Leigh Edlin and while it isn’t very known as yet for producing professional fighters, it has a fantastic atmosphere and superb training and facilities. It is Chao Phraya Muay Thai Academy’s aim to introduce and promote the art of Muay Thai, Thai Culture & History within our class structure and syllabus. In addition, the academy aims to promote fitness, confidence and well being through our exercise and training prescription, welcoming to complete beginners as well as seasoned professionals.

Sourced from: www.sg.sports.yahoo.com

ParnPetch Rirom – Workshop (07.06.14)

ParnPetch Rirom

 

DATE: 7th June 2014

TIME: 1pm – 3pm

PARNPETCH RIROM: Arjarn Parnpetch Rirom has spent the last 16 years coaching in Bangkok and throughout the World. He was one of the head coaches at the World famous Sasripapa gym. With over 250 fights, both an amazing technician & awesome fighter and to his credit Arjarn Parnpetch was a former Ratchadamnoen champion. He was also awarded the most exciting fighter of the year at both Ratchadamnoen (twice) and Lumpinee.

Chao Phraya Lincoln are proud to present a clinch (Prumb) and fight strategy seminar/workshop. Arjarn Parnpetch is one of Kru Leigh Edlin’s & Kru Shaun Boland’s original teachers and coaches in the UK and Bangkok.

This seminar is open to all camps, clubs and styles – Including: Muay Thai, MMA, Kickboxing and K1 etc …who have a thirst for knowledge & experience!!

WORKSHOP DETAILS: TBC

WHAT TO BRING: TBC

PRICE: £20

TICKETS AVAILABLE HERE >> CLICK

LOCATION BELOW: Fight Specifix Unit 3A – Exchange Road, Doddington Road, Lincoln LN6 3JY

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SAENCHAI v PAKORN: ParnPetch Rirom was Saenchai’s chosen corner man and coach for the SuperShowdown 10, in Glasgow on the 10th November 2012.

PARNPETCH RIROM – IN ACTION:


Human Weapon

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Hosts Jason Chambers and Bill Duff travel to Bangkok, Thailand, the home of one of the most recognized martial arts, Muay Thai. Their journey takes them to the legendary Lumpinee Stadium, and then to the jungles bordering Burma where they train at a Buddhist temple.

Human Weapon – Muay Thai

Muay Thai Elbow

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Lumpinee Stadium… the last fight

Lumpinee Stadium

The last fight…

After 57 years playing host to many of Bangkok’s most memorable fights, the legendary Lumpinee Stadium closed its doors for the last time this weekend with leading fighters including: Petboonchu Borplaboonchu and Seanchai PK Saenchai. Completed in December 1956 and run by the Thai army, the corrugated iron roofed ramshackle venue was seen as the heart and soul of Muay Thai to fighters from the world over.

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The History

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Lumpinee Boxing Stadium (Thai: สนามมวยเวทีลุมพินี) is an indoor sporting arena located in Bangkok, Thailand. Opened more than a decade later than Rajadamnern Stadium, the Lumpinee is run by Royal Thai Army on behalf of Thai Government. It has become the symbol of modern Muay Thai. Only Rajadamnern Stadium rivals the prestige of holding the title of “Muay Thai Champion of Lumpinee”. The ranking system and championship titles are held from mini flyweight (105 lb) up to super welterweight (154 lb). Muay thai contests are held on every Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays. The fights usually start around 6pm. and ticket prices range from 200 to 2,000 baht.

The NEW Stadium

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Now The new Lumpinee Boxing Stadium is nearly 100 percent ready for a boxing match. The competition begins at the new stadium on Tuesday February 11th 2014.

The last fight – Photos

The last night was an intense one with two knockouts and quite a bit of blood spilled… These photos were all taken on that night.

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A fighter listens to his coach’s advice between two rounds.

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Coaches and supporters react to “their” fighter’s performance during a match

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Fighters in the ring during a very powerful fight which caused spectators and gamblers alike to go wild

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Gamblers gesture during round 3 of the heated battle. The bets are placed using hand-signals, very much like at a stock exchange.

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A coach fits a traditional arm band (called a Prajioud) onto his fighter before a match

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A fighter prays before entering the ring

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Gamblers anxhiously watch a fight

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A fighter grimaces with pain in the stadium doctor’s office after he was knocked out

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A fighter waits for his turn to fight

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A fighter practices his moves, shadowboxing before his bout

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Gamblers react to the outcome of a fight

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A fighter is tended to in the stadium doctor’s office, after a knockout

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A fighter listens to his coach’s advice between two rounds

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Gamblers react to a fight going against the odds.

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A fighter spits out blood and is looked after by his team after a difficult fight.

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A gambler reflects on the evening after the last fight.

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The usually bustling back area of the stadium with the massage beds where the fighters are prepared for the fights is left deserted at the end of the night.

Sources: www.realfeatures.com and www.muaythailumpinee.net and www.wikipedia.org