Invest in private lessons. Group classes are excellent but ask any great fighter how they got great, and they will tell you they had one on one coaching as well as team training. Even if you can’t afford privates every week, getting a private lesson once a month would do wonders for your progress. There is only so much individual instruction teachers can give in a class setting. Don’t think that private lessons are just for fighters or advanced students, anyone can benefit from them.
Don’t buy cheap gear. Invest in some quality equipment. I can understand why at first you might buy a cheap pair of gloves because you are not sure if Muay Thai is for you. But once you have been training for a bit and want to take it seriously you’ll want gear that lasts and is protective. With most gear the price indicates quality. So yeah, that $50 pair of gloves will wear out much sooner than the $100 pair. With most brands you really are getting your money’s worth. As far as style and brand, that’s a personal choice. Ask your instructor, fighters, or advanced students at your gym what they like and read online reviews… and for God’s sake do not buy cheap headgear and mouth guards.
Be a good partner. Learn to hold pads well. Not only will being a good pad holder make your fellow students appreciate you but it will also make you stronger. You don’t have to think of exciting flashy combos to call out for your partner. Some of the world’s best pad holders keep it straightforward and basic. Just call basic punches kicks and knees, keep the pace up, work on your footwork while holding and hold pads with a good amount of resistance. Communicate with your partner about the right height, angle, and resistance of the pads. They will be grateful for your thoughtfulness.
Stand up straight and do your rows. While an awesome workout, Muay Thai is not great for your posture. Coupled with a desk job and our faces in a smartphone all day you got yourself a recipe for a hunchback. If you don’t want to look like an osteoporosis-ridden eighty-year-old, then make posture a priority and do some other functional training besides Muay Thai. At 8 Limbs we offer x-training class which are perfect for building strength and correct upright posture. At the very least do way more rowing exercises than you think you need and chill on those push ups and your bench pressing, those will only make the hunch back worse and you’ll probably end up with some sort of shoulder injury down the road.