Muay Thai Techniques- Muay Thai Knee Tactics

Muay Thai is a martial art that originates from Thailand with the origins of it centered around a fight between two princes. Also known as the science of 8 limbs, Muay Thai techniques employ the use of both hands, feet, knees, and elbows.

The knee is a technique that is taught in a majority of martial arts around the world. Must tournaments In martial arts restrict the use of knees which are most common in Muay Thai competition. Knees are commonly used in Muay Thai techniques. Some of these include:

1) Kow Dhrong or straight knee strike is a technique that in Muay Thai that goes straight into the opponent’s body. The Khao Dhrong can be seen as the equivalent of a front kick or teep in the knee strike category. The delivery of the Khao Dhrong is the same from a technical point of view. The key point for a strong Khao Dhrong is to use the hips and drive it into the body. This is done by extending the knee through the hip and bending the upper body away from the opponent. This technique can be done with the lead leg or rear leg. For hand placement some Muay Thai schools will teach that the lead hand should extend out to the opponent as a distraction. The other school of thought is that the lead hand cross the face as the rear hand swings down to generate more power.

2) Kao Tud or horizontal knee strike is technique that is delivered in a outward swinging action. The Kao Tud is similar to the roundhouse kick or mawashi geri in other martial arts. The technical aspect of a good Kao Tud is that the knee upon impact must be parallel to the ground. A key point for Kao Tud is to raise the leg and pivot the hips on the pivot leg. The whip action is similar to the roundhouse kick. The difference is that the knee will make contact instead of the shin. The Kao Tud is excellent for fighting in clinch distance.

3) Kao Loi or jumping knee is a variation of the Kao Tron. The Kao Loi is performed in a similar fashion to the Khao Dhrong but the power is generated with the velocity of the jump. The same technical aspect of the hips driving the power is the same with the Kao Loi. The technique is excellent in situations where the opponent has been backed against the ropes. The Kao Loi can catch the fighter off guard and end the fight quickly.

4) Khao Yieb or step-up knee strike is a complicated, yet extremely powerful, knee strike. The Kaho Yieb involves stepping onto the opponents thigh and driving a devastating knee in the upper chest, neck, or head. One of the rarer Muay Thai techniques, it is exciting to see and can easily end a fight.

Knees are an important staple in Muay Thai. Knees can be used to wear down your opponent in the clinch or end a fight when perfectly timed and executed. It is important to note the mechanics of each strike. Remember to stay on the balls of your feet upon contact.


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One Response

  1. Matt Says:

    Knees are the most vicious strikes in Muay Thai – I love them! Great detail in your article about the types of knee strikes.

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