Muay Thai gym 2

The next gym I visited was located beneath an overpass near the National Stadium. This gym is named Poolsawat. The master is named Nan (uncle) Dam, and he was a fighter back in the day, and a local champion. As with Sit Chaansing, there are ten students (here, aged 8-20) that Nan Dam has selected to train, and the students don’t pay. Poolsawat is obviously better furnished than Sit Chaansing; the club is sponsored by a local Chinese-Thai businessman who wants to make his name as a philanthropist for young people. Nan Dam has been training students for 28 years, the last four of them at Poolsawat.

The two best fighters are two half-brothers, nicknamed Fais and First, both aged 20, whose father owns the boxing club. (Fais also had the most interesting tattoos.) As I did with Sit Chaansing, I sent the photographs to my contact and asked him to give me the names of various students and trainers, but I couldn’t connect all the names with the images, so I don’t have complete captions (but I do have a lesson learned: get the information you need when you’re there).​

The training area, located under the overpass. Nan Dam applies an analgesic ointment to First’s hand; Fais’ tattoo; a poster advertising First’s appearance as flyweight champion at the local arena.
Khun Poom, one of the trainers, works with a younger student as two others grapple with each another; that student later lands a solid kick against his practice partner. Fais spars (gently) with the other student later, to help train him, while First delivers a kick of his own.
Nan Dam works with one of the students outside the ring; more training between students and trainers. There was some glove work while I was there, but most of the days’ activities seemed to be focused on legwork.