Muay Thai Styles

Muay Thai Styles: The Complete List

Most casual fight fans think that Muay Thai is just one style of striking. There are actually various Muay Thai styles within the martial art that are practiced.

Here is a quick explanation of all of the Muay Thai styles. Below is a description of each Muay Thai style and some of the most famous fighters known for using them.

How Many Muay Thai Styles Exist

There are five different Muay Thai styles practiced within the martial art. Each of these five styles specializes in an aspect of the martial art.

They include

  • Muay Tae
  • Muay Femur
  • Muay Mat
  • Muay Bouk
  • Muay Khao

All over Thailand and the world, there are Muay Thai boxing gyms that specialize in one or more of these Muay Thai styles.

Muay Tae

Muay Tae is one of the five Muay Thai styles that emphasize the use of kicks. Specifically, roundhouse kicks, which are the most powerful round kicks out of all the martial arts.

The entire goal of a Muay Tae fighter is to batter your body with their shins. They throw their entire force behind every target, your legs, body, or head, to land a knockout.

In training, a Muay Tae will do more specific training and conditioning to improve their roundhouses. Many notably will chop down banana trees with their round kicks as a shin conditioning routine.

The Five Best Muay Tae Fighters

Buakaw Banchamek

Buakaw Banchamek

It goes without saying that the legend Buakaw is one of the best Muay Tae fighters ever. He has defied the laws of time and still delivers the best round kicks in the sport.

Yodsanklai Fairtex 

Yodsanklai Fairtex is a legend that won world titles around the world using his powerful leg kicks. Many consider him one of the best in Thai boxing history.

Pud Pad Worawoot 

Pudpad earned the nickname “The Golden Leg.” If you’re a multi-time world champion with a nickname like the golden leg, you’re a top Muay Tae fighter.

Sakmongkol Sithchuchok

Sakmong beat countless Thai boxing legends during his long career. Using predominantly the round kicks that made him famous.

Apidej Sit Hirun

Arguably one of the great Thai boxers of all-time, who helped grow the sport in its early years.

Muay Bouk 

A Muay Bouk is the most aggressive of the five Muay Thai styles. These types of Thai boxers have one speed, and that is 100%.

They will only ever go forward and relentlessly attack their opponent. Every time they throw an attack, they intend to take their opponent out.

In Muay Thai, Muay Bouk fighters are considered the most durable warriors in the sport. They possess great conditioning that allows them to fight at full speed for an entire bout.

The Five Best Muay Bouk Fighters 

Mike Zambidis 

Mike Zambidis

Mike Zambidis was one of the most ferocious fighters of the 2000s. The Greek kickboxer always pushed forward and gave us exciting fights.

Muganthai PK

A young and aggressive fighter from the Nong Ki District that’s known for producing good Muay Bouk fighters. As of now, PK is a 5x champion in Muay Thai.

Liam Harrison 

Liam Harrison is one of the most popular Western fighters in the sport today. No one in the sport throws their strikes with the intensity of Harrison.

Orono Por Muang Obon

One of the most exciting Muay Bouk fighters that fought throughout the 1980s.

Sangtiennoi Sor Rungro

A legendary Muay Bouk fighter that competed in over 200 fights and won multiple world titles.

Muay Khao 

Muay Khao is a Muay Thai style specializing in knee strikes. Throwing powerful knees from every angle and every range that could end a fight.

These types of type boxers are usually also experts in the clinching game. They’re able to defend their opponent’s attacks as they angle and open them up to land vicious knees.

Like, the pressuring Muay Bouk style, the Muay Khao style demands high-level conditioning. This is because you must keep constant pressure on your opponent to set up your knee strikes.

The Five Best Muay Khao Fighters

Petchboonchu FA Group

Petchboonchu FA Group

Petchboonchu FA Group is arguably one of the greatest Thai boxers to have ever lived. The legend was an aggressive fighter that had some of the best knees ever seen in the sport.

His clinching and knee strikes were the stuff of legend. Helping Petchboonchu become one of the most decorated champions in the sport’s history.

Yodwicha Banchamek 

Yodwicha is one of the best modern-day Muay Khao fighters currently competing in the sport. He came into the public’s eye in 2012 and would go on to win Lumpinee titles using his knees.

All the proof that you need of Yodwich being one of the best ever is his winning record against the legend, Petchboonchu

Dieselnoi Chor Thanasukarn

Dieselnoil was an extremely tall Muay Khao fighter that was called the sky-piercing knee. He could land his deadly knees from almost anywhere in the ring.

Sagetdao Petpayathai 

Sagetdao is another one of the best Muay Khao fighters of the modern era. He is considered to have one of the best clinching games in the world that he uses to land devastating knees.

Chamuakpetch Haphalung

Haphalung was nicknamed “the knee computer” as he was the best knee striker of his era. Using his teep and boxing skill to set up his precision knee strikes.

Muay Mat 

Muay Mat is one of the five Muay Thai styles that specialize in the use of a heavy punching striking game. They are the best boxers of all of the other Muay Thai styles. Sometimes even possessing enough boxing skills to transition and win world championships in boxing.

In their attacks, a Muay Mat fighter often leads attacks with punches or sets them up behind leg kicks. As their leg kick lands, they step in and throw a crisp boxing combination.

Muay Mat fighters are also great at countering and defense tactics using their punches. They can block and quickly counter a round kick or stop an opponent from initiating a clinch.

The Five Best Muay Mat Fighters 

Ramon Dekkers 

The legend Ramon Dekkers, hailing from The Netherlands is considered to be one of the most influential western fighters in Muay Thai history. He possessed the skills of a pro boxer and showed the importance that Thai boxers needed to improve their striking skills.  

Dekkers also helped introduce the aggressive style of Dutch Kickboxing.

Sagat Petchyindee 

Sagat Petchyindee is the famous Thai boxer whom the Street Fighter character was created after. In his time as a fighter, Sagat had some of the best boxing skills in all of Muay Thai.

Samson Isaan 

One of the old Muay Thai legends was also a boxing world champion. Samson retired as an undefeated champion boxer, as well as a multi-time Muay Thai champion.

Veerapol Sahaprom 

Veerapol is considered one of the best Thai pro boxers in the history of the sport. During his 72-fight boxing career, he would win three world titles. This doesn’t include the numerous other championships in Muay Thai.

Rodtang Jitumuangnon

Rodtang is one of the most popular Thai boxers on the planet. He is one of the Muay Thai stars of ONE Championship, where he’s delivered numerous knockouts.

Muay Femur 

Muay Femur is considered to be the most intelligent of the five Muay Thai styles. A Muay Femur fighter has a high fight IQ and is able to out-think their opponents.

Coming up with game plans of attack with a solid set of well-rounded skills. They are the most prepared of all Thai boxers and often have the best technique in the sport. Many of the all-time great Thai boxers in history have been Muay Femur style fighters.

The Five Best Muay Femur Fighters


Nong-O is one of the most intelligent Muay Femur fighters of the modern era. His intelligence and well-rounded skills have enabled him to win the ONE Bantamweight Championship.


The legendary and ageless Saenchai may be one of the best Muay Femur fighters of all time. His ability to fight for decades at a high-level while always adapting his technique is unmatched.

Samart Payakaroon 

Samart Payakaroon was one of the best Thai boxers of the 1980s and 1990s. He used his impressive mind, conditioning, and skill set to win numerous Muay Thai and boxing titles.

Sangmanee Sor Tienpo

One of the top Muay Femur Thai boxers fighting in the sport today. Tienpo is currently signed with ONE Championship.

Littewada Sitthikul

A 5x champion that’s one of the best Muay Femur fighters competing in the sport today.

Which of the Muay Thai Styles is the Best? 

Out of the five Muay Thai styles, there isn’t one style that is better than the other. All of them are effecting forms of striking.

The beauty of these styles is that each has strengths and weaknesses against the other. A Muay Bouk fighter may have an advantage over a Muay Femur fighter or vice-versa.

Which Muay Thai Styles Should I Learn?

In order to be a complete fighter, you should strive to learn all of the different Muay Thai styles. You must possess good striking ability with all eight limbs and good clinching and defensive skills. Learn all of the Muay Thai styles and become the best fighter you can be.

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