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So What Exactly is Bang Muay Thai?

As anyone who trains at Tallahassee’s Train. Fight. Win. knows, Bang Muay Thai isn’t exotic cuisine, but a mixed martial arts (MMA) striking system. This hybrid style of martial arts relies on techniques, moves, and strategies used in western boxing, Dutch kickboxing, wrestling, karate, and Muay Thai, Thailand’s traditional martial art. The BMT system has been widely adopted by professional and amateur MMA fighters and BMT training has become widely popular as a self-defenses and fitness regimen for non-fighters.

Origins of Bang Muay Thai

Absent the “Bang,” Muay Thai has been culturally significant in Thailand since at least the 12th century. While initially developed as a system of hand-to-hand military training by Siamese tribes and kingdoms, it evolved into a way-of-life discipline for day-to-day living among all components of the population.  

Commonly known today as Thai Boxing, Muay Thai is based on the “art of eight limbs,” with fists, elbows, knees, and shins used to mimic the weapons of war by how they strike the enemy. Starting in the late 1800s, Thai rulers began promoting Muay Thai as a sport for entertainment, with codified rules established by the 1920s. Over the following decades, new rules were adapted to provide the fighters with greater protection from injuries and death. By 1995, Muay Thai had been established as a global sports federation with 70 member countries and is on track to become an Olympic sport.

Enter Duane “Bang” Ludwig

Professional MMA fighter and coach Duane Paul Ludwig developed the “Bang” philosophy as an addendum to Muay Thai during his illustrious career in various MMA forums. During his fighting career, Duane won the U.S. Muay Thai title and recorded the fastest knockout in an Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) fight. As a MMA coach, Ludwig mentored UFC champion T.J. Dillishaw and UFC contender Joseph Benevidez, earning awards as UFC “Coach of the Year” in 2013 and 2014.

During his MMA career, Duane trained under Sensei Bas, who created the number system. Along with melding various elements of different martial arts, Bas developed a numbering system for combination striking that allows fighters to process striking sequences faster than systems used for most MMA techniques. This system helps fighters quickly chunk together complex, unpredictable combos that deliver effective strikes and help keep their opponents off balance. BMT also incorporates more flexibility in fighting stances and in utilizing different angles for offensive strikes and defensive parries. The BMT system has become so popular that there are now more than 30 officially sanctioned BMT training centers in America, including Train. Fight. Win., the only BMT affiliate in northeast Florida.

The Bang Muay Thai Belt System

Given BMT’s origins from Muay Thai, Ludwig incorporated the traditional martial arts’ belt system as a measure to gauge a student’s ascent through the BMT system’s learning curve. Thus, there is a clear white-to-black belt proficiency path that guides BMT practitioners towards expertise. As with other traditional martial arts, BMT is oriented around respect—for the martial art itself and between student and teacher. Thus, BMT training includes specific protocols, such as bowing to opponents before a match and honoring other traditions.

Master Bang Muay Thai with Train. Fight. Win.

Not only is Train. Fight. Win the only BMT affiliate in northeast Florida, but co-owner and coach Sky Rudloe trains under BMT originator Duane Ludwig. This connection provides Train. Fight. Win. students some of the best BMT training in the country. Sky and co-owner and coach Alissa Rudloe also have extensive training in other martial arts, allowing them to offer students a variety of martial arts training at all skill levels. Whether to learn a martial art, boost existing martial arts skills, or as a unique fitness regimen, Train. Fight. Win. can help you reach your goals. Contact Train. Fight. Win. today at (850) 727-8421 to schedule your free introductory training session.

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