Does Muay Thai Have a Belt System?
Traditionally Muay Thai doesn’t have a belt or ranks system. Because the fighters learn Muay Thai for fighting at wars or earning a living, not for belts.
In Thailand, it’s a very prestigious and professional martial art and no armband can define your value.
So, remember that in Thailand there are no black belts or any type of ranking system.
The belt ranking system starts in the late 19th century from Judo, and then it starts spreading the word, and slowly Karate, Taekwondo, and Ji-Jitsu started their belt ranking system.
The western side dojos outside Thailand also catch the fire and starts Muay Thai belt ranking systems.
Which Belts Have a Ranking System?
In traditional Muay Thai, there is no belt or ranks system, but some of the Muay Thai camps outside Thailand have created a belt ranking system to motivate their student to pursue Muay Thai training.
Some gyms started their belt ranking system like:-
- Bang Muay Thai belt ranking system
- Evolve MMA (Singapore) ranking system
- Roufusport Kickboxing Association belt system
Also, the World Thai Boxing Association (USA) started an armband-based ranking system.
in Thailand, you’ll only go for championship belts not ranking belts.
Why Muay Thai Don’t Have a Belt System In Thailand?
In Thailand they don’t care about rank, they train because they have very deep traditional and spiritual values for Muay Thai.
If you are passionate and courageous about Muay Thai training, then you’ve to train 8 to 9 hours a day for 6 days a week.
And when you’re trainer thinks that you’re ready he will allow you to go to the ring, and there was no ranking belt to validate that, only your skill, dedication in front of your master.
And after your trainer allows you to fight, he may be offered a ‘Praciat’ which is a sacred armband given by the monks for your protection against serious injury-not for ranking…
Pro gyms in Thailand will laugh at using the grading system of armbands, cause they know they wear these for good luck, not for rank.
The only way to measure the rank of a Muay Thai fighter is through their winning record, quality of wins, skillset, and the number of championship belts and titles owned.
There are 7 levels of Muay Thai fighters:-
The Armband Ranking System In The WTBA
The WTBA use this belt ranking system:-
- The Black & White
- The Black & Red
- Black & Silver
- Black & Gold
And also some schools use colored shorts to define ranks…
Here, the white belt is dedicated to the beginners, then after some training, they get yellow, and then orange, green.
And after clearing the required test the trainee move up to the blue belt and there is a purple, red and brown belt, after the trainee clears all the final tests, they’ll get a black belt.
In my opinion, I don’t think the belt ranking system is required, in most western gyms it uses commercially, but some say it’s a way to motivate students to work hard for the belt ranking.
So, I let you guys decide that the ranking system is necessary or not?- comment your answers…