Muay Thai clinch

Perfect Muay Thai Clinch – Best Hacks You Should Know

Many moves can turn a fight, but the Muay Thai clinch can truly build you up or tear you to shreds.

It's an essential technique of Muay Thai that, unfortunately, not every fighter is able to pull off successfully.

Fighting in the Thai clinch takes considerable skill, but if done well, can allow you to land devastating elbow and knee strikes.

We previously touched on how to use the technique in combos before.

So, are you interested in learning how to pull off the perfect Muay Thai clinch?

Check out below to learn about some of the best hacks to help you perform a great clinch.

Maintain Balance

If you enter a clinch with a skilled opponent yet you lack balance, you're sure to end up slammed to the ground quickly.

You never want your opponent to gain the upper hand and sweep you. This is easily done if you rush into the clinch in various fight stances rather than squared off.

So, to keep balanced, be sure to square your hips so that they're aligned with your opponent's hips. This way, you keep your weight shifting to properly so that they can't overpower you and get you to the ground.

Having great balance also pays off against a not-so-skilled opponent, allowing you to rapidly turn the tide of the fight and execute a proper clinch throw.

Proper Control

In the Muay Thai clinch, without control, you're on the losing side. On the other hand, with the right amount of control, you will dictate how the clinch plays out.

You get and maintain better balance with arm control as well as set yourself up for performing sweeps or knees.

You want to focus on keeping two different points of control.

One point is your opponent's head. By grabbing the back of their neck, you can position their head down, throwing them off-balance.

Another good point to take charge of is your opponent's arm. By having control of one of their arms, you can cut off their chance of throwing a well-timed elbow, thus protecting yourself.

Control also places you in a better position to throw elbow strikes or some powerful knees.

So, you want to stay on top of your opponent in the clinch at all times by consistently having two points of control.

Proper Use of Strength and Energy

By now, you've probably performed a Muay Thai clinch or two.

Did you feel exhausted after only a few seconds?

If so, you probably spent more energy than you should have in the beginning.

Just watch skilled fighters in a clinch.

Notice that it isn't usually over within ten seconds or so? Instead, a Thai clinch can go on for over a minute.

Even if you break free or throw your opponent, you can find yourself back inside a clinch moments later.

How do you ensure you have the energy reserve to keep your balance and control throughout the entire clinch session?

Don't try to use brute strength against your opponent.

The clinch isn't about raw strength. It's about proper use and execution of the right techniques.

The best place to utilize strength other than when performing knee and elbow strikes is the pressure you put on your opponent's neck and shoulders.

When you have them in a hold, lay down as much pressure as you can muster. This will tire them out instead as they struggle to get free.

Using Your Hips, Arms, and Legs Together

Want to pull off those devastating clinch moves you see the professionals doing?

It's all about synchronizing how you use various parts of your body.

You already know about balance and control while not depleting all of your energy at once. Now, put those skills to good use to bring your opponent down in a hard sweep.

First off, you want to use your arms as a means of pulling your opponent.

Your hips should be kept close to your opponent. Combine both of these together, twisting with your hip and pulling with your arm, to slam your opponent in a properly timed sweep.

Another way to perform a clean sweep is combining your arms and leg. The same idea applies with pulling your opponent, keeping them off-balanced. While they struggle to straighten themselves out, you can sweep out their leg with the front of your leg.

The Right Time to Throw Knees

Many people think about knee strikes the moment they consider the clinch. However, one wrong move, and your opponent can turn those strikes against you and land you on the ground in a good throw or sweep.

So, when's the right time for knee strikes?

Don't do it the instant you're in a clinch. Instead, wait for your opening to lock your opponent's head down.

Keep pressure on the back of their neck and shoulders for this and land powerful knee strikes. They'll damage your opponent, tire them out, and force the ref to break it apart.

Wrapping Up – Practice

No one perfects their Muay Thai clinch technique overnight. So, it's essential that you practice often.

Train with someone who is adept at the clinch so you understand various techniques and positions to utilize.

Don't be afraid to learn new techniques and adapt to your opponent's.

Try the hacks above, combine them with some overwhelming techniques, and you'll be on your way to perfecting the Muay Thai clinch.


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