Kru Phons teaching styles is heavily based on teaching proper Muay Thai technique, while teaching you the fighting benefits of what you are doing. Phon will not stop showing you a proper technique until you get it right. Phon can answer all your questions about Muay Thai techniques as he was a top lumpinee fighter of the early 90s.
Kru Dohs teaching style is heavily based on proper techniques, just like kru Phon. Doh knows Muay Thai in and out, and will share all his Muay Thai knowledge with you.
Apple has been around Santai Gym since the Siam number 1 day and is an energetic and happy trainer. He is loud and highly motivating when teaching. He has ranked up around 300 fights and has fought at the top Bangkok stadium, Lumpinee.
Kru Nan was one of the famous Pinsinchai / Narupai superstars during the gyms greatest years in the 80 - 90s, he has about 70 fights at Lumpinee stadium and about 20 at Rajadamnern stadium and in total maybe 300 fights.
Daeng is a humorous bad-boy who loves to joke around, but is serious when it comes down to training.
Lop was consistently within the top 5 rankings at both Lumpini and Rajadamnern Stadiums back in his prime, and was known for his technical skill and high fight IQ / intelligence.
Manasak is a former Pinsinchai fighter, brought up by the fantastic Pinsinchai team- Aswindam, Pichit, Sancherng, and Kru Nan amongst others. Manasak has recently retired holding the fourth rank at Lumpinee, as well as holding belts from Rajadamnern, WMC World, and more. Manasak has been a top fighter for over a decade, and is one of the greatest.
Loukas A. Greece
Santai Gym is a great place to train! There are talented trainers for every level, the gym is well equipped, the accommodation is more than you would have expected for a Muay Thai camp and the town is remote enough to keep you focused, but also has most of the things you might need along with the cheapest massage place I have ever been to (which comes VERY handy). If I decide to go back to Thailand for Muay Thai, Santai will be my first and only choice.
As a complete beginner to Muay Thai, with a last minute decision and a quick search on Google I feel like I completely lucked out in choosing Santai Gym. I was only here for two weeks in between other travels, my main purpose was to get in shape and lose some weight (which I did, 4.5kg!). To an amateur turning up to such a place it can be an intimidating experience with the thump of pads being kicked, the shouts from the trainers and grunts from the fighters but after the first morning session we were made to feel right at home. The facilities, location, accommodation and, last but not least, the trainers are all perfect for such an experience. Only on doing some further reading did I realize we were being trained by such absolute legends in the Muay Thai game. They take they training seriously with a great sense of pride but do so with an amazing sense of humour and although they make you work hard, you have fun whilst doing it. There is a real family feel about the gym and after two shorts weeks I had learnt so much and was sad to leave. I hope I get the opportunity to return in the future.
Kristen Tomajka Australia
I am a beginner at Muay Thai and admittedly was very intimidated when I arrived at Santai, it seemed to be full of professionals and, as I had expected a lot of males. After my first session I knew there was no need to be intimidated, the trainers and all the students were very friendly and welcoming and only happy to help out. The two training sessions per day are intense but varied and you are never left feeling bored, you do however feel a few aches and pains in areas you didn't know a muscle still existed! When I look back at this experience I really can't believe the value for money, you are with word class trainers, who put a smile on your face every day, in a small village in Chiang Mai with a very friendly community, and have a private room with your own double bed, fan and fridge, with all facilities easily accessible. I also loved the fact the gym has a family vibe and you are also training with Thai students. I cannot thank the gym enough for whipping me back into shape and showing me what I am capable of and never giving up on making sure I had the correct technique. For people who are worried about the atmosphere because they are doing it on their own, there is no need, most of the students I was training with were on there own and you quickly make new friends and barely eat alone, there are also options for social outings with the gym. I can't wait to return next year.
a traveler Australia
I rate Santai very highly. I've been to a couple of other gyms (one for 2 weeks, another for a bit over a month) and Santai has really stood out for me, based on feeling of community - I felt a part of the Santai 'family' in the short 2 weeks of training. I think for those who are interested in the full Muay Thai experience, Santai Gym is for you.They don't have much of a weights area, but there is something quite simple for those who know what they are doing. The mornings are set out around conditioning anyway, you would go for your morning run, shadow, do some quick pads, and the rest was for the afternoon session.No need to worry about figuring out the running track, because they kids are available to buddy up with students - no one is left behind and no one is lost on the first couple of runs. There is a 4k, 6k & 11k track. I did a few runs solo, and felt safe enough to do so. In the afternoons, you can start with the run (or skip, or jump on the tyres), wrap your hands and then get ready for warm up and shadow.Santai Gym, I found were organised with ensuring everyone gets a chance at pads. Also, the newbies go first with the head trainer. Like with every gym, you have your own chemistry and tend to preference certain trainers and styles, you do get opportunities with different trainers. Pad rounds are 5 x 5 min rounds!! I find its always about finding the right teaching style for your learning style.Santai trainers certainly had a unique way of teaching technique (as I had read)! The gym is filled with Lumpinee legends, and both western and Thai students training for fights and competition, it's always active here so it is a real joy to watch and hear fight training in action.Wednesday and Saturdays and the odd morning there is sparring. Clinching is every afternoon which I think is fantastic - clinch is really where its at when you are fighting or training to fight in Thailand, so its great that they practice this almost every day. We finish off with group ab exercises and stretching.The afternoons are long and tough however you work at your own pace to a degree. The trainers are always in high spirits, they are funny and always having a joke, there are always plenty of smiles. Going back to the sense of community. San Kamphang is a small village, but there are other places around. The main street has busy markets on Saturdays, a 7/11, Tesco, cafe/coffee shops, street food vendors and lots of banks/ATMs.There are only few tourists here, and as a tourist I felt very welcomed by the community. Some of the kids who are living and training at the gym (nak muay's) have troubled backgrounds, however they are looked after by the gym and the trainers, their English is quiet good, they have lots of company, these kids were very respectful despite their rough upbringing.I really liked to see that when they earn money by fighting, or cornering fighters, they can use this money for whatever they like. When students book private lessons with trainers, this is also handled between trainer and student, this transaction isn't dealt with by gym management. I thought this was nice as well.
Dino Chai New Zealand
I had a great time at Santai. It is a fantastic gym with awesome trainers and a great vibe. I truly enjoyed my stay there; met some good friends; went back for an extra 3 weeks training after traveling and will go back again when I can.
Masumi Namiki Australia
I had a great time in Santai. It was an amazing experience for me, as this was my first time in a small town outside Chiangmai. Ood has been really helpful in picking me up from the airport and giving me information about San Kamphaeng. The people training there are very laid back and friendly, and the environment is really good for those who are training.The trainers are all very patient and friendly, and they are all very focused in the basic before progressing to the next level. The training is at your own pace, which is really good as I could practice by myself and the trainers will correct me personally instead of training in a 'structured' training program.I also found that it is really good for beginner to attend the morning session, as there are less people training and the trainers are able to spend more time with beginners like me. I would definitely stay there longer to learn Muay Thai if I didn't have my own traveling plan and learn from the trainers. I would visit there again in future.
Ng Ai Li Singapore
The gym was great. The instructors were patient, professional, and adjusted their instruction according to the students' ability. I was a little concerned about the training before going there but everything worked out wonderfully. I had a great time!
Santai Gym website
I have been travelling and training full time at various Muay Thai gyms around Thailand for 5 months. Santai Muay Thai is among the best gyms I have encountered.
The trainers are all not only exceptional former (and some current) fighters, they also really know how to teach! They hone in on an individual’s particular skill set, and really drill out bad habits, and teach you how to exploit your strengths. They are also incredibly patient, they will not allow sloppy technique to slide!
The afternoon session consists of five 5 minute pad rounds, for which Santai is renowned. This means you will basically be getting a private session every day, half an hour of one on one time where you are pushed, encouraged, and will step out of the ring exhausted, smiling and feeling achieved.
Socially, the gym fosters a family culture – the students eat together, enjoy Sunday’s off together and generally help each other out. The trainers encourage us, are patient and always make us laugh. I live at the gym accommodation (Chaidee House) which is my favorite gym accommodation in Thailand so far. It is recently built, very clean and comfortable.
Lastly, the cost of living in Northern Thailand will be a huge relief for those used to Phuket prices. I can’t say enough positive things about this gym and the community in which it is found! It offers excellent training, in a great setting, for the right price, and is excellently managed and maintained.
I wish i started my training here at Santai instead of Phuket.
Ax muaythai forum website website
Santai Gym in Chiang Mai is by far the best gym in the north and always has been; their quality of coaches really is superb. It is a bit touristy now due to it not being as hardcore as it once was but this is the place to visit for anyone wanting quality training in the north.The new owner Nik has done the place wonders and has now expanded it to a huge complex. He has a trainer to student ratio of 1 to 3. I think with most of the trainers being ex Pinsinchai/Narupai fighters. Due to Pinsinchai generally having quite a unique high level style, Nik realized it conflicted hugely in having coaches that were not from that gym as they taught in a completely different way.If you ever make your way up north these really are the guys to speak to. They have been at full capacity for the last couple of years and have been turning students down but due to the huge revamp will be taking in more people.
Eden Alpert Israel
Santai Gym website
A bit more than 4 months of training that came to an end sooner than I thought. I just hanged a new bag at my yard to keep some technique from fading. I can only say it was an amazing time, great gym, great coaches, and above all the people that come to train make it the home that it is. I just got home and I'm already looking forward to come again. Hopefully it wont take me too long, see ya again soon, and again thanks for everything.
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