The instructors at Double Dose make it very convenient for all the students to attend class and not miss any criteria or class time. On Mondays and Tuesdays instructors teach the same thing. They teach the same techniques so that if you can not attend on Mondays you can come on Tuesdays and not miss out on the lesson. Wednesdays and Thursdays are like Mondays and Tuesdays, the same thing that is taught on Wednesday will be taught on Thursday. Fridays and Saturdays there is a class called rounds class. Rounds class is meant for students to be able to practice and get extra help with anything that was taught during the week that they need a bit more work on. Every student must attend a certain amount of classes a month to be able to test on the last Thursday of every month. There are criteria and vocabulary sheets in the locker room and in the front desk that every student should have so that they know what they are learning for that month and what vocabulary they need to learn for testing. On testing day everyone is required to be in complete uniform with arm band, gym shirt, thai shorts, hand wraps and gloves to test. If you are missing any part of the uniform you can not test. Testing is very important to be able to rank up and advance in Muay Thai. Before testing begins everyone is to show respect and stretch together. After everyone takes the vocabulary test and lines up to get started with testing. Once instructors announce it is testing mode you must be very quiet and pay attention to instructions that are being given. When instructors tell you to show a certain technique or skill you can not move until they say GO if you move and they did not say GO you accumulate push ups for after testing. When testing you must be really loud and show your technique properly to get a good grade in the class. The grading for the test is from 1-4, 4 being the highest and 1 being the lowest. Testing can be very nerve recking and intimidating but being positive and confident helps a lot.
Muay Thai and boxing have similarities. The big difference is that in Muay Thai you are allowed to do elbows, kicks and knees. Using elbows and knees makes the sport so much more competitive and exciting. With one knee or elbow the fight can be over and you can knock out your opponent. Elbows are like knives, if you know how to properly elbow an opponent you can split their skin open. No other weapon can compare with the elbow in terms of brutality and blood-breeding capacity. Knees and elbows is what makes Muay Thai so unique from a boxing and any other sport. There are eight elbow techniques and each one has a different name. They are called Sok Ti (Striking Elbow), Sok Tad (Perpendicular Elbow), Sok Hud (Levering Elbow), Sok Chieng (Diagonal Elbow), Sok Sab (Chopping Elbow), Sok Tong (Smash Downward Elbow), Sok Ku (Double Elbows), Sok Klab (Reverse Elbow). It is very important to practice these different elbow techniques on the punching bag first and slowly with a partner so you can be confident enough to do them during sparring and fighting. All the elbow techniques have the same concept, to strike your opponent but each are done differently depending the situation you are in. If you only know how to do a basic elbow you will not be able to defend yourself with your opponent in all circumstances. There are seven knee techniques used in Muay Thai. They are called Kao Tone (Straight knee), Kao Dode (Jumping knee), Kao Nui (Small knee), Kao Kratai (Rabbit knee), Kao La (Farewell knee), Kao Lod (Lower knee), Kao Loi (Flying knee). The violence of the knee is equal to that of the elbow if the fighter used it properly with a good technique and timing. Learning how to properly knee is not easy, balance is important. A proper knee must be thrusted upward and straight, powerful and sharp. Kneeing and elbowing techniques can be difficult to learn and hard to master but with the help of the instructors at Double Dose they are learnt in no time. The instructors take their time to show students how to do the techniques correcting them each time it is done incorrectly. Drills are done throughout class so that the students can not only learn how to elbow and knee but block and defend themselves.
Thai only has one stance. All of the techniques and skills learned are done from Thai Stance. The very first thing you are taught in Muay Thai is your stance and the way you are supposed to move around while performing the techniques and skills. If you do not understand the proper foot work you will have difficulties combining kicks, elbows, knees, and punches. Thai stance is when your left leg is placed in slightly forward facing your opponent and your right leg is placed behind facing at about 45 degrees away from the leading foot. The heels of your feet need to be raised off the ground while the rest of the body is turned at a 45 degree angle in sync with the rear foot. If you are left handed your stance will be exactly the same but with your right foot facing your opponent and your left foot at 45 degrees along with your body. It can get a little confusing when opponents have opposite thai stance. It is always good to learn how to work with both thai stances so that your are always ready and avoid confusion. Some left handed students say being left handed can have some advantages when fighting because it can throw the opponent off when doing defends and counters. Footwork is very important and Double Dose instructors like to do exercises that help students move from left to right and from front to back so that when students are working on techniques, sparring, or even fighting they are able to move around properly and not trip over themselves or their opponents feet. If you are moving to your right side you will move your right foot first and your left foot will follow. Same goes for your left side, if you are moving to your left you move your left foot first and then your right foot. Moving forward and backward is a lot easier, if you move forward you stay on your same tracks and move your front foot first and then your back foot. You do not move your back foot first. If you move backwards you will move your back foot first and then you will move your front foot back. One important thing a lot of students forget, when you are in thai stance and your are moving around always keep your hands up ready to block your face and body. The instructors tell you to keep your hands up like if you are answering the phone. If you drop your hands it is easier for your opponent to hit you. Thai stance can be a bit confusing to learn but once you get the concept you will see how it makes putting combinations and techniques so much easier when it comes to balance and movement.