A review of Chay Yai - Muay Thailand website
Training Structure: If you're a beginner, you will be well taken care of and get a lot of attention from a trainer guiding you through the basics. If you have some experience you will, for most of the time, need to push yourself a bit when doing anything other than pads. It all boils down to motivation.Once you've grasped the basics, a lot of the shadow boxing and bag-hitting will be on your own, although occasionally a trainer will walk up to you and correct your technique and ask you to do specific combinations just to be able to correct you some more, etc. It varies a lot though, a little bit depending on the trainers present, student/trainer ratio, and general mood in the gym, but most of all your own level.The more experienced you get the more you will be left to your own devices. The general outline would be something like run (optional), skip (optional), warm-up and stretching exercises, on some days technique drills then pads, on some days straight to pads, bag work (up to you), shadowboxing (up to you), clinching (generally encouraged), sit-ups etc and stretching. The general structure is quite loose, which might suit some people but not others. If you're motivated and know what you're doing, you'll be fine.Trainers' Techniques: Most of the trainers were high-ranking fighters once upon a time and know their business. The language barrier may occasionally throw some gravel in the machinery with some of them, but all in all, they all know what you are doing wrong and know how to correct it. Many of them had been working as pad holders for year and years and know how to push you both technically and physically.Trainers' English: Some trainers were better and some worse as far as English goes, but usually you can find someone to translate if there are any questions. All of them know at least some basic English, and some more than that. Body language and simple words are in my opinion more important than fluent english when teaching Muay Thai. The gym manager speaks good English and can help you with most things in and around the gym.Gym Equipment: The basic things are there such as dumbbells, kettle bells, a bench press, a piece of concrete on a string, pull-up bar etc but, well, it ain't Gold's Gym. Some rust on the weights, some holes in the bags and some bumps in the ring. But hey, the purpose of your visit is not to experience the latest spear-point technology in hi-tech equipment, is it? Train morning and afternoon and you will be too sore to do more than some very basic weight-lifting stuff, for which this is more than adequate.Costs: If you want a discount straight up I suppose you could do some negotiating if you're staying for more than a couple of months. If you want to fight, I suppose that would be a bonus. Talk to Noom, I can't promise nothing. I got big discounts for staying there a long time and fighting.Overall Rating As I think most of the essential stuff has been mentioned in the previous sections all I can conclude with is that I will most definitely revisit this place next time I'm in Thailand. Training aside, the atmosphere is great and most of the people training there were good people who I loved hanging out with. The gym manager speaks fluent english and will help you out with anything and everything you'll need.
Freddy1234 from UK
Chay Yai Gym (Chiang Mai - Thailand) - Tour and Travel Guide in Thailand website
Training Training outline is fairly typical. Each session consists of a warm-up run (1.8 km circuit - complete 2-5 times), shadow boxing, pad work, bag work, technique, stretching and sit-ups & pushups to finish. Sparring and clinching are thrown in here and there. Whilst the routine was fairly typical, I felt the quality of training was much better than average.The focus was on technique rather than cardio though, and if you are a fighter you were expected to get your conditioning done yourself (road work). I nearly always got 4 or 5 rounds on the pads with a decent trainer, which is always a stand-out factor. Too many gyms will take your money and leave you on the heavy bag.Staff The staff were very friendly and welcoming. A young guy called Noom is the general manager and speaks very good English. Hes a nice guy and will go out his way to help you out. His Dad also speaks good English but likes to talk a lot you will see The trainers were also pretty top quality, I had some time with most of them but Yak and Mr. A stood out most for me. They were good at teaching and their Muay Thai understanding is superb.Accommodation I got a room behind the gym, which was priced, at 2500 baht a month or 150 per night. It had hot water and internet. No air conditioning at that price but you are unlikely to need it in Chiang Mai as its slightly cooler than most of Thailand because of the altitude and location. There are a fair amount of rooms around the gym, which Noom will sort you out with. Or you can stay in town and get the free gym pick up every day.Eating Theres several places within walking distance. Most popular seems to be Tiks. A friendly Thai lady who cooks your food in front of you for 25-30baht a meal. Bad stuff The facilities are pretty old. I found it kind of cool personally but some people didnt like it. It definitely could have done with some mats on the concrete floor though. Hygiene was also sometimes an issue. These guys like their cock fighting and keep a lot of cockerels around the gym. Quite often you would see them walking around and taking a crap on the ring for example. That said, I didnt get ill or any infections.Things to do Go up Doi Suthep on a moped (dont go on a tour unless you are a middle aged woman - it will bore you to tears). Visit the Night Bazaar if you like or need to do some shopping. Pay Chiang Mai MMA a visit for Jiu Jitsu training if you are here for an extended period and would like to keep your grappling going. There is a whole road of hooker bars if thats your thing in the town centre.Summary: Extremely cheap area of Thailand. Good training. Nice people!
Heidi and Henry Finland
Muay Thai at Chay Yai Gym - Land of Smiles website
One of the influences in choosing Chiang Mai was based on a selection of shortlisted Muay Thai camps in Thailand that did not immediately strike a too touristy note*. *Because we're here for authentic bang-your-head-against-the-sacred-rock secret training This criteria was formed after a fair share of miserable stories told on various websites. From thieving trainers to apathetic pad holders, the horrors were many. After careful review, re-review and a post-review estimations, we narrowed the choices down to three possible camps, all in or near Chiang Mai.Chay Yai gym holds two sessions a day on all days of the week, except for Sundays. Each session is 2-3 hours in length, depending on personal fitness levels and motivation. Training varies in structure daily, as one should expect, but usually follows the pattern below: Short Warm-up Technique drills Pad rounds/punching bag rounds Drilling the bags for high reps (20, 30 or 50 kicks/knees - rince and repeat) Conditioning (sprints, bodyweight exercises etc.) Cool down (yoga, sit-ups or applicable) You're welcome to step outside the guided practice at any point if you want to do extra sparring, running, conditioning or anything else generally useful and Muay Thai in nature.People also tend to drop out one by one as their gas tanks run dry or they have personal business to attend to. Chance of injury is pretty low, although the use of protective head gear is something, I'm sorely missing from our much missed home club Helsinki Thai boxing Club. I understand in a whole new way how the real nak muay have very short careers and play a part in a host of sad stories of rags to riches and back to rags again.In our time spent training, we've acquired some new techniques (especially in the thai clinch, which should be taught in more detail back home!) and possibly some conditioning as well. Making friends of the other students would be easy, but due to our love of food and touristy ways (some students stay here for months at a time) our paths often differ. Still, it is very easy to strike conversation with any of the international students, who range from low twenties to almost-forties in age and tourist to a competing nak muay in skill.Some of the fellow students have asked for fights to be arranged (not fixed, although suspicions of using tuk-tuk drivers are easy to come by) at one of the local stadiums where they compete against local talent. Tha Pae stadium seems to have a firm connection with Chay Yai Gym as one of the trainers is a promoter/organizer there according to the fliers. An opportunity to test my skill against the local boys was offered to me as well (the gym makes money from fights, of course), but I had to politely decline due to Heidi not letting me.All in all, the experience has been one I definitely will be missing back home and I would not find it surprising if we found our way back to Chay Yai at one point...but that's ages away and we still have a lot more bruises to acquire and lungs to cough out. Onward, I say!
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