Jax Muay Thai Levels and Testing

Traditionally, Muay Thai does not include the colored belt levels common in many other martial arts. In Thailand, a fighter’s progression in Muay Thai is measured by his or her prowess in the ring and number of fights.

However, here at JMT we follow the Khanomtom System of testing and progression. We recognize that many people who train Muay Thai have no desire to fight, or even spar, yet still want to feel like they’re progressing in their Muay Thai journey.

Grounded in traditional Thai teaching methods and concepts, our assessments allow you to test and measure your progress as you master the art of Muay Thai. Khanomtom is a flexible system that allows you to progress at your own rate – it’s good to learn from others but don’t compare yourself to them or to how fast others may move from one level to the next.

All new students start with the Thai Student (Nak Rien) path to learn the fundamentals of Muay Thai and develop a strong foundation.

This is a 3-part testing consisting of sessions with a JMT trainer designed as benchmarks to evaluate your progress toward the first major Khanomtom milestone – Level 1 Thai Boxer (Nak Muay). Level 1 Thai Boxer signifies that you’re at the level of a starting out amateur fighter and that you can now start to spar if you so wish.

Level One Thai Student (White Prajiad): Minimum of 36 hours training required.

  • Demonstrate correct Muay Thai stance, guard and footwork through the mirror footwork drill for 2 minutes.
  • Demonstrate quarter-turn footwork through the bull and matador drill for 1 minute.
  • Demonstrate competence in all basic punches and elbows and knowledge of the Khanomtom basic punch, and elbow, combinations on the pads:

   1) Jab-Cross-Evade-Cross-Rear Elbow

   2) High-Low-Evade-Cross-Rear Elbow

   3) First 2 Power Punch Combinations: Cross-Hook-Cross and Uppercut-Hook-Cross

   4) Elbow combo 1 into thin air  – lead horizontal elbow-rear horizontal elbow-lead up elbow-    rear up elbow- rear spin elbow-lead spin elbow

  • Demonstrate rear long knee and step through long knee on the pads.
  • Demonstrate strong and accurate leg kicks on the suitcase pad for 2 minutes and body kicks on the Thai pads for 2 minutes..
  • Demonstrate correct Snap-back evasion and kick counter.
  • Perform alternate Teep drill for 2 minutes on the bag.

Above all, make sure that you maintain composure and good Muay Thai basics throughout your test!

Level Two Thai Student  (Yellow Prajiad): Minimum of 72 hours training required

  • Demonstrate all 3 Power Punch combinations (cross hook cross, uppercut hook cross, overhand uppercut overhand).
  • Demonstrate all 3 Lead hand combos: Jab-Cross-Hook, Hook-Cross-Hook, Uppercut -Cross-Hook
  • Demonstrate Up Elbow – Rear Oblique Elbow
  • Demonstrate 3 basic hand positions in clinch (bicep control, chicken-wing, head control)
  • Demonstrate delivering a strike from each clinch position
  • Demonstrate correct way to check kicks and 2 effective counters
  • Demonstrate redirecting a Teep an effective counter
  • Perform 1 x 3 minute round on the pads  with a trainer
  • Perform skip knees for 2 minutes on the bag.

Level Three Thai Student  (Green Prajiad): Minimum of 108 hours training required 

  • Demonstrate 3 hand positions in guard (tight guard, loose guard and figure 4 or Count Dracula)
  • Demonstrate defense against jab, cross and hooks plus effective counters
  • Demonstrate lead horizontal elbow to rear spinning elbow
  • Demonstrate rear horizontal elbow to lead spin elbow
  • Demonstrate 3 escapes from head control in clinch
  • Demonstrate one dump from clinch 
  • Perform 1 x 3 minute round of kick for kick sparring with a trainer.
  • Demonstrate correct over hand catch and counter and a catch with dump/off-balance
  • Demonstrate correct shelving catch and counter and a catch with dump/off-balance
  • Perform 20-20 on the pads

Level One Thai Boxer (Blue Prajiad): Minimum of 140 hours training required,  signifies that you’re ready to start sparring. It means you understand, and can display, the basics of Muay Thai offense and defense and have good cardiovascular fitness.

Level One Thai Boxer Testing Procedure

Your Level One test will be you first major hurdle at Jax Muay Thai. Most people take at least a year to achieve Level One and it’s something you can be very proud of. In the Khanomtom system we have very high standards and we are basically saying that if you are a Jax Muay Thai Level One we would consider putting you forward to represent us in competition.

Most often, one of the JMT instructors will let you know when you are ready to start getting ready for the test but if you’ve been training consistently for at least 5-6 months then you can ask an instructors opinion. 

We’ve found the most effective way to prepare is:

  1. Familiarize yourself with the testing protocol and technical requirements.
  2. Ensure your fitness is up to scratch, through running and jumping rope.
  3. Make sure you’re attending as many classes as possible, particularly sparring drills.
  4. Start practicing with an existing Level One whenever possible by offering to hold pads for them.
  5. Be patient, everyone progresses at their own rate. Practice carefully and consistently. and you will see your own personal growth
  6. Make an appointment for a pretest with a JMT instructor. Most often the instructor will tell you what you need to work on and what is a reasonable time frame for your testing (you may need to do more than one pretest).
  7. With Kru Giles’s permission – reserve your spot in one of the monthly testings.

8)  On the day of the test, arrive at least a half an hour early and warm up. You will need to bring all of your Muay Thai gear, including shin pads, and you must wear Muay Thai shorts.

The Test

1The test will start with Sealing the Ring, the Wai Kru and the first part of the Ram Muay. These must be performed in the Khanomtom style, so learn them from the JMT instructors—don’t teach yourself from Youtube.

2After the Ram Muay, you will go to your corner to start the pad rounds. A JMT instructor will “feed” you the pads for 2 x 3 minute rounds. You can expect to be pushed hard with strikes coming back at you. We will assess your competence with basic strikes (punches, elbows, knees and kicks) and your defensive skills and fitness. Most importantly, we are looking at your overall appearance, composure and balance.

3Following the two rounds on the pads, you will have one clinch round with a JMT instructor. We are looking for a basic understanding of clinch positions, knees and dumps.

4After the clinch round, you will hold 1 pad round for an existing Level One Nak Muay. In addition to your pad-holding ability, we will be looking for your understanding of the basic Khanomtom combinations, your mastery of rhythm and flow, and your knowledge of scoring.

Technical Requirements:

A good stance and good Muay Thai guard is expected at all times.

Composure and balance is critical.

All techniques should be delivered cleanly and powerfully with good recovery.

Most important for the test are strong, accurate kicks and knees with good recovery and balance, and good defense- kicks that go undefended or unanswered will count against you.

You are expected to know the following basic combinations, in practice under pressure:

1) Jab-Cross-Evade-Cross-Elbow

2) High-Low-Evade-Cross-Elbow

3) Jab-Cross-Body punch

4) The 3 Power Punch Combos:

– Cross-Hook-Cross

– Uppercut-Hook-Cross

– Overhand-Uppercut-Overhand

5) Lead hand combos:

– Jab-Cross-Hook

– Hook-Cross-Hook

– Uppercut-Cross-Hok

6) Lead up elbow-Rear crossing elbow

7) Lead horizontal elbow to rear spinning elbow

8) Rear horizontal elbow to spinning elbow

You are expected to know the 4 basic defenses for a round kick:

1) Evade and counter

2) Check and counter

3) Catch and counter, and catch and dump/off-balance

4) Double Forearm block and counter

…and for a Teep:

1) Redirect/parry and counter

2) Football catch and counter

…and for a knee:

1) Evade and counter

2) Jam and counter

3) Redirect/parry and counter

You are expected to know at least 4 basic clinch hand positions and how to deliver effective strikes from the clinch.

1) Bicep Control

2) Chicken-wing

3) Head control

4) Over-under

5) Michael Phelps side control

6) Double-Unders—high and low

Above all, make sure that you maintain composure and good Muay Thai basics throughout your test!

Level Two Thai Boxer:

New Isolated Techniques:

Kicks: Batha Loob Pak (R Teep to face) / Praram Yep Longka (Swinging Jump Kick)

Elbows: Apidej Sok (Rising Reverse Elbow) / PraRama Soon (Flying Spear Elbow)

Feint Teep Series:

  1. Feint L. Teep / Jab
  2. Feint L. Teep / R. Teh
  3. Feint L. Teep / R. Kao Tang
  4. Feint L. Teep/ Shovel-hook
  5. Feint L. Teep / L. Sok Tad 
  6. Feint L/ Teep / R. Legkick Sweep

Elbow Progressive Combinations:

  1. L. Sok Tad/Descending R. Sok (misses) / Sok Kaab
  2. R. Sok Tad / Horizontal L. Sok (misses) / Horizontal L. Reverse / R. Sok Sob

Elbow Counter Series:

  1. Force Entry- R/L Sok
  2. Jab/Cross –catch/ parry/L Sok
  3. Hook – cover/check / Sok Sob
  4. Overhand- cvr/chk / L or R Sok Tad
  5. Uppercut – cvr/chk / Pra Rama Soon
  6. Shovel-hook or Straight to Body- L Sok
  7. From Plaam- Sok Tad/weave ovr arm/Sok
  8. Elbow- Cover (on shoulder)/Sok

Southpaw Series lvl 2:

  1. Dbl Jab/ R Kick 
  2. Jab/Parry dwn opponent’s lead/ Hook/ Rear Kick (to Rear arm/body)
  3. Jab/Parry dwn opp lead/Hook/Rear Kick (to Rear Leg)
  4. Jab/Control opp lead/R Knee/R Elbow/push out-R Kick (to Rear arm/body)

Pram:

Introduce Elbows (sok / sok tad / sok kaab / apidej sok / pra rama soon) / Elbow defenses ( cover/pummel)

Level Three Thai Boxer :

Isolated Techniques:

Kicks: Saenchai Teep (Jumping Pushkick) / Praram Dern Dong 1 (Jump Switch Kick) / Praram Dern Dong 2 (Climbing Switch Kick) / Saenchai Teh (Cartwheel Kick) / Jarake Faad Hang (Spinning Heel Kick)

Knees:  Saenchai Kao Loy (Flying Switch Knee)  / PraRama Dean (Climbing Knee) / Bansean (Double Flying Knee)

Punches: Hanuman Thawai (Flying Double Uppercut )

Elbows: Sok Kaab(Spinning Reverse Rising Elbow) / (Spinning Reverse Descending Elbow) / Sok Sob(Climbing Spear Elbow) /Hanuman Hak Dan (Knee assisted Elbow)

Southpaw Series lvl 3:

  1. Parry Jab/ R Kick (step away fm cross)
  2. Parry Jab/Hook/R Kick-R. Overhand (superman)
  3. Parry Jab/Cvr Cross/Hook-R Up or Dwn Elbow/R Knee
  4. Parry Jab/Cvr Cross/Hook-R Sweep to Lead Leg/R Knee

Modified Muay Boran Counter Series:

  1. Advance- Saenchai Teep / Pra Rama Dern Dong 1
  2. L. Teep – parry outside / Pra Rama Dern Dong 2
  3. R or L Kick- Catch Kick/throw-out /Saenchai Teh
  4. R or L Kick- Block Kick/rtn Teh (to neck- misses) / Jarake Faad Hang 
  5. Kao Tang – push / Saenchai Kao Loy
  6. (from neutral grip clinch)parry down grip/ Sok Kaab (Rising)
  7. (from full grip clinch)Pull/ Pra Rama Dean (or Climbing Sok Sob)
  8. Jab/Cross/Hook- cvr/tie-up/ (fm full grip clinch) Bansean
  9. R or L Kick – Saenchai Teep / Hanuman Thawai
  10. Teh – catch / Sok Sob (to leg) / Sok Kaab (descending)
  11. Kao Tang – Sok Sob (to leg) / Sok Kaab (descending)
  12. Overhand or Hook – cover & lock arm / Hanuman Hak dan

Pram:

Advanced throws / sweeps:

  1. Time Curve Knee- Sweep
  2. Time Straight Knee- Curve Knee (to leg)
  3. Time Curve Knee- Straight Knee to Leg/Lift body
  4. Time Straight Knee- Shelf/Sweep