Muay Thai for the Over 40 Student

Is it possible to start this discipline later in life, perhaps when you’re over forty or in your late thirties?

Many people dream of starting a martial art and it’s not till later in life they have the chance.

Kids, career, and an active social life are just some the things can be a barrier to the sport.

But when the opportunity finally arises, many people think they’re too old to train.

After all, many Thai’s start training when they’re around eight years of age, and then retire around the age of twenty-five. So, what hope if there for someone around, or nearing forty.

8 Reasons to Try Muay Thai

1. An Exciting Way to Get Fit

I would wake up, go to work, get home, watch TV and sleep – rinse and repeat.

If this sound like, you then you’re not alone. It happens to a lot of us. And this sort of behaviour is a great way to pile on the pounds.

Many people when they fall into this trap of inactivity do the obvious things; like joining the gym, running, or trying to exercise at home.

But, sooner or later, their motivation fades and boredom sets in.

One of the best things about Muay Thai is its complexity. Although you only use eight limbs to fight and defend, the combinations of these eight limbs produces a finite number of moves, strikes, and defenses.

In short, there’s always something new to learn or try. From week to week, you’ll find that the moves, techniques, and combinations stay varied enough to keep very interesting, and the movements that you need to perform can be difficult.

Not only will they push your heart rate, but you’ll have to bend your body in unusual ways, which is great for improving flexibility. And, as we all know, flexibility is something that deteriorates with age as we all age.

Improved flexibility means your movement and gait improves; this can result in an improvement in your posture. And a healthy posture helps with appearing young and healthy.

2. Destroy Opponents, Calories, and Fat

As we get older our metabolism slows down, resulting in weight gain. The body stores fat more easily.

Unfortunately, you must train more (or harder) if you want to lose weight when compared to a person in their teens or twenties.

You may find that the exercise that once kept you trim might not work anymore.

Muay Thai provides rigorous exercises that can burn lots of calories in a small amount of time.

It’s often estimated that anywhere MT session can burn-off somewhere in the region of 300 to 1,500 calories in a one or two-hour session depending on your level of exertion and skill.

It can burn even more if you add sparring to your lesson.

And losing a few pounds can often shave a few years from your appearance too. Because looking thinner often makes us look and feel younger.

3. Improves Your Skin

Sweating improves skin condition as it helps to expel oil and dirt that’s trapped in your pores. If left, this dirt and oil will damage the skin over time, causing your skin to age in function and appearance.

This is why saunas and baths are good for the skin. The heat, moisture, and atmosphere help to open pores and help the skin to clean itself – inside and out.

Not only will your Thai Boxing session help you to get into shape, but it will help you to sweat out all that trapped dirt and debris in your skin.

However, make sure to wash aware the dirt afterwards to avoid reabsorption back in to the pores.

But getting sweaty at the Muay Thai gym can improve the skin in other ways, too.

Whenever you exercise you cause more blood and oxygen to reach parts of the body, such as your organs and tissues. This includes the skin.

This drives more nutrients into your skin, increasing collagen production, therefore helping to hydrate the dermal layers and reduce wrinkles.

Furthermore, the increased blood flow during your Muay Thai sessions will help to flush cellular debris from your body. This results in the detoxing of the body from the inside out.

4. Builds Bone Density, Muscle, and Flexibility

Bone density and muscle mass deteriorate as we get older. To make matters worse, our bodies also gain weight with age due to a slowdown in our metabolism.

Gaining weight and brittle bones are a deadly combination that can lead to recurring injuries and diseases like osteoporosis.

And if you work a desk job, the risks are even worse. Sitting for prolonged periods causes bad posture and has been linked to metabolic syndrome, weight gain, decreased mobility, increased diabetes risks, and even premature death.

As you can see, if you’re inactive your body is attacked in multiple ways. And over the years this damage can add up.

The answer to this is simple: exercise!

Exercise is great but it can become boring fast, especially if you’re just doing the same exercises day in and day out.

However, Muay Thai provides a rigorous workout. And it can remain interesting for years and even decades due to the complexity necessary for advancement in both fitness and skill.

After all, it’s often said that: Thai Boxing takes one month to learn but ten years to master.

Thai Boxing workouts will improve your cardio, improve your flexibility, and stress your bones and joints (this is how you improve your bone density). So, Muay Thai can help you fend off the effects of old age and disease.

I also recommend that you start to eat and drink a diet that’s high in calcium and vitamin D.

Muay Thai is hard on the bones and joints so you should add dietary aids to help.

Drink lots of organic raw milk. Almond milk if you’re a veggie. Cod-liver oil and calcium tablets are all things that can help.

You can also help recover from grueling Muay Thai training sessions by participating in yoga, mobility and stretching, and HITT cardiovascular conditioning sessions on your day off that improve blood flow and circulation and enhance and speed recuperation of tired tissues, joints, and bones.

5. Improve your Social Life

Many studies show that as we age our number of friends can diminish. Joining any sort of Muay Thai club is a great way to combat this.

As we get older we become inhibited, and we find it harder to talk to strangers.

In contrast, consider how easy it is for children to make friends. They don’t have the same problems when making new friends like an adult does. A child finds it easy to walk over to another child, start talking, and to play.

When you join a Muay Thai club, you are joining a group of people that share a common interest and goal. Immediately, this gives you something in common with others. Making it easy to talk, have fun, and support one another.

As a result, Muay Thai can be a great way to make new friends and create a new social group.

6. Mental Improvements

Thai boxing is a great way to improve your mental health and conditioning.

It requires commitment, mental focus, and physical activity. These are great for combating stresses, anxieties, and depressive moods.

Like all exercise, a good Thai Boxing session will release chemicals in our bodies called endorphins. And these powerful chemicals are responsible for your emotional well-being, good moods, and euphoric feelings.

Thai boxing will also get you out of your comfort zone.

You will be put in situations that are unfamiliar to you. You will have to memorize movement patterns and striking techniques and recall these repeatedly as you train.

Challenging yourself in this manner is great for building confidence, improving mental focus, and improving your memory.

One of the best ways Muay Thai combats stress is this it feels great to pound the crap out of something. After a tough day, there’s something satisfying about hitting the pads or bags to relive stress and tension, which distracts you from life’s problems for a short time.

7. Earn Respect

People who practice martial arts often command respect from others.

Why, because, martial arts requires commitment and strength of mind to learn, is physically strenuous and demanding, creates the facility to easily react under pressure, is mentally challenging and often painful to learn, and ultimately enables you to fight and defend yourself or others.

These are character traits that are admired in other individuals.

Additionally, Muay Thai is one of the toughest martial arts there is to master.

So, not only are you structuring your life with a discipline that commands respect and recognition, but you are achieving this with one of the toughest combat sports on the planet.

8. Self-Defence and Protection

Muay Thai is a superior close-combat self-defence discipline. It provides stand-up striking along with various clinching techniques that utilizes the entire body as a weapon, helping you to fend off would be attackers.

It’s a practical martial art.

The basic strikes and defences can be learned in a matter of weeks, giving you the basic tools to defend you or your family should the need arise.

Additionally, Muay Thai also has an active sparring element to it. This gives it an advantage over other martial arts because it teaches you how to hit a moving target that is trying to hit you back.

And after all, this is what happens in a real fight.


I hope you have enjoyed my reasons to start Muay Thai, and I hope it will give you the inspiration to join a gym and give Muay Thai a try.

Even if you never spar or compete, it’s still a great sport to learn.

It will bring many benefits to your life, and you might be surprised how fast you shed the pounds, get fit, and feel great.

And when you consider that, as we get older, it’s harder to get into shape and maintain that shape. It shows you how truly effective this martial art is for improving your health.

Stay Strong,

Brett Place

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