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Difference Between Muay Thai and Tae Kwon Do

Difference Between Muay Thai and Tae Kwon Do

Muay Thai

Muay Thai vs. Tae Kwon Do

Martial arts include a variety of fighting techniques. Two of the most practiced martial arts techniques would be Muay Thai and Tae Kwon Do. These two are completely different in terms of style and approach in attack. Muay Thai is a sport that originated in Thailand. It makes use of stand-up striking that involves clinching techniques. It is the same with the form styles of the Indochinese, Malaysia, Laos, Myanmar, and Cambodia. As a matter of fact, Muay Thai is the national sport of Thailand. Its name’s origin is in the Sanskrit word “mavya” and the “Tai” from “Thai.” In translation, it is the “Art of Eight Limbs.” It is also coined as the “Science of Eight Limbs.” A Muay Thai fighter has to use several punches, kicks, and elbow and knee strikes. All in all, a fighter has to hit the eight points of contact. A fighter of Muay Thai is called a “nak muay.” Taek Won Do is the national sport of South Korea. One has  to strike or break with a fist. Taek Won Do is the art of the foot and fist; fighters have to perfect the art of kicking and punching.

The martial arts have different histories. Muay Thai is a combination of several regional muays. It involves Muay Chaiya, Muay Tarsao, Muay Korat, Muay Jearng, and Muay Boran. Muay Boran is believed to have been used by Siamese soldiers after they lost their weapons in the battle. In the long run, the Muay Boran was used as a practical fighting approach. Eventually, muay became a sport used to entertain spectators. Muay Thai is even held in most local festivals and celebrations. As for Tae Kwon Do, it is considered the oldest Korean martial art. It was created by three Korean Kingdoms, namely Goguryeo, Silla, and Baekje. This martial art technique was used to train young men for unarmed combat techniques. It helped develop speed, strength, agility, and survival skills. Those young men that were trained in this martial art were called Hwarang. They were the new special warrior corps. In 1959, the Korean Tae Kwon Do Association was created to help unify and create a single Tae Kwon Do teaching approach. There are only two martial arts that have been included in the Olympic games, and one of them is Tae Kwon Do.

Difference Between Muay Thai and Tae Kwon Do-1

Tae Kwon Do

Muay Thai’s technique is divided into two types – Mae Mai and Luk Mai. In this technique, two opponents have to exchange blows with one another. One has to punch in a long circular strike with a straight arm. One has to hit and land with the heel of the palm. To avoid the attacker’s head, one has to strike from below or the knees. The elbow can hit horizontally, diagonally upwards, uppercut, downward, or backward spinning. It can be the finishing move to cut the eyebrow of the opponent. The fighter can kick in two ways; through a foot jab or using a method of kicking upwards mimicking the shape of a triangle making its way under the arm and ribs. Tae Kwon Do focuses on kicking techniques. The key is to use the leg as the strongest and longest weapon for a martial artist. Tae Kwon Do has to be practiced with bare feet, although there are special training shoes available. Aside from kicks, a person has to perfect their stance. They should be able to do an attention stance by standing upright with the legs side by side. The hand attacks must be perfected, too; that can take the form of a closed hand strike or the open hand approach. Hand strikes should be fast so they can leave the opponent stunned and unable to defend themself.


1. Muay Thai originated in Thailand, while Tae Kwon Do started in South Korea.
2. Both sports are culturally inclined.
3. Tae Kwon Do focuses on kicking techniques, while Muay Thai centers on exchanging blows.

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