What to Wear for Muay Thai Training
First of all, congratulations on taking up Muay Thai. You are maybe a little nervous and excited about your first Muay Thai class and stepping into a Muay Thai gym. If you are concerned about what to wear for Muay Thai training, you’ll be happy to know that there’s a pretty laid back dress code for Muay Thai.
In general, anything you would wear for your gym workout works at a Muay Thai gym too. Think sports tee and short shorts.
What Should Men Wear for Muay Thai
For guys, you can wear a sports tee or singlet as a top. Going topless is the norm for many Muay Thai gyms in Thailand where it’s sweltering heat everyday. You are welcome to go topless so long as you feel comfortable.
This may not be a common practice in most countries outside of Thailand, especially in the West and varies from gym to gym, so check to see that you are not attracting unwarranted attention.
What Should Women Wear for Muay Thai
For the ladies, you can wear a sports bra, a singlet or sports tee as a top (see top image). Going topless is not an option anywhere, as far as I know.
For your bottoms, you can go with a pair of women’s Muay Thai shorts, sports shorts or leggings. You will be throwing some leg-splitting kicks so you don’t want to be restricted by your bottoms.
Wearing Muay Thai Shorts
Muay Thai shorts are about the coolest looking and best choice of shorts for training. There are shorts with looser cut and some with a more contemporary slim fit.
The leg openings can be quite wide so as to allow for full range of kicks so you want to consider something more appropriate to wear underneath.
We suggest dark boxer briefs -instead of boxers- to maintain some form of modesty and to prevent any slippage exposing your family jewels.
Girls might want to avoid anything lacey or too micro, in case your gym partners and trainers get too distracted when you perform those high kicks. Compression shorts (spandex, cycling, tights) are also popular and a comfortable choice.
Going commando is an option but NEVER recommended.
There is no lack of options when it comes to Muay Thai shorts. Check out “Best Muay Thai Shorts: Compendium of Style” for recommendations.
Muay Thai Gear
You will obviously need boxing gloves for your training. You will be able to use the gym’s on-site gloves but they usually stink with so much punching mileage over time. The padding would have thinned out too and may not offer enough protection for your hands.
You will need shin pads (also called shin guards) for sparring down the road as you advance further but you will not be needing them for now as a beginner.
Ankle guards are fairly common in Muay Thai and you may sport them on fighters and trainers alike.
They keep the ankles warm and if you have bad ankles, they can offer some joint support especially when you will be kicking a lot of heavy bags and firm pads.
Knee guards are a less common sight in Muay Thai but there is no rule stating that you can’t wear them for training.
They provide the same practicality as ankle guards, offering support for knees. Both supports are helpful in keeping your joints protected to a certain degree until you get your techniques right.
Both the ankle and knee supports are not mandatory for Muay Thai and not everyone wears them for training. For me, I use ankle guards occasionally but not for all lessons. Some of my friends swear by them and my Thai trainers wear them.
Ankle guards are also very affordable so you might get a pair if you plan to train Muay Thai long-term.
Rash Guard for Muay Thai
Rash guards are fast becoming a popular option for both men and women training Muay Thai. This is not uncommon in MMA gyms offering Muay Thai classes.
Amongst their many benefits: they minimize acute muscle injuries and they keep you feeling dry and comfortable while you train. Most importantly, they look so very stylish.
A good set of rash guard is very hardy and will withstand the rigors of Muay Thai training. They are definitely not as common compared to the traditional Muay Thai outfit of tees and shorts but if you train at a gym that has MMA, then this is perfectly fine and there is nothing wrong with it.
Muay Thai training is conducted bare-footed but there are gyms -especially those in Thailand- where the fighters go for a 3-mile run as part of endurance training (or warm-up) for fighters. In this case, you can bring a pair along or show up in your running shoes if you want to join in the run.
Most Muay Thai gyms outside of Thailand typically start the training with some work on the jumping rope or a quick jog within the gym compound.
Muay Thai is a fun, interesting and fulfilling sport. Before you know, you will be filling your wardrobe with workout tops and shorts for your Muay Thai training. Comfort is key, and your sense of style is the limit.