Bangkok, 8 March, 2017 – The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is inviting Muay Thai boxers and martial art fighters and aficionados from all over the world to join the World Wai Kru Muay Thai Ceremony 2017, which will be held on 17 March in the ancient Thai capital of Ayutthaya.
Mr. Noppadon Pakprot Deputy Governor for Tourism Products and Business said, “The annual World Wai Kru Muay Thai Ceremony has become a firm fixture on the calendar for Muay Thai practitioners all over the world. The event allows international boxers to appreciate the more respectful and charming elements of this distinctly ancient Thai martial art. Not only do visitors get to see first-hand the appreciation Thai boxers have for their teachers, they also get to spend a day or two in Ayutthaya, one of the most beautiful and historically important places in Thailand.”
Every year, hundreds of Muay Thai boxers and enthusiasts from around the world come to Thailand to join the annual World Wai Kru Muay Thai Ceremony and to show their respect to their teachers and past Muay Thai masters. The event also includes a special ritual, so that boxers can pay homage to famous Muay Thai fighters from Thai history including King Naresuan the Great of the Ayutthaya Kingdom (1590-1602) and to Nai Khanom Tom – a local hero, famous for his victory over ten Burmese fighters in a boxing bout that took place in 1774.
The Wai Kru Muay Thai Ceremony is a time-honoured element of Muay Thai during in which boxers show gratitude and respect to their trainers with a “wai” – which is the traditional way Thais show respect to seniors and superiors as well as being a daily greeting. This wai will be followed by fighters performing a series of dance-like movements accompanied by traditional musical instruments. This is an essential part of Muay Thai that must be performed before every fight.
The World Wai Kru Muay Thai Ceremony has been held annually since 2004. This year, some of Thailand’s best-known fighters: Buakaw Banchamek, Samart Payakaroon, Anuwat Kaewsamrit and Saengmani Umkatongchiangmaiyim will lead international Muay Thai boxers in the moving ritual that pays respect to their teachers. The event will be joined by 20 competitors from the “Thailand Festival Experience – Mission 1: Amazing Fight”, a TAT project launched to encourage visitors to enjoy “Unique Thai Local Experiences”. (Read more: TAT staging Amazing Fight to enhance global awareness on the art of Muay Thai)
As well as the much-anticipated ceremony itself, during the day of the event, there will be many activities to enjoy, including a professional bout of boxing “The Amazing Muay Thai World Heritage Competition” featuring matches between professional Thai and foreign boxers. Those who would like to learn the art of Thai boxing can visit booths from the Muay Thai schools in Thailand, and shop for boxing equipment or training courses.
There will be many exhibitions and demonstrations relating to ancient Thai martial arts, including a display of ancient weapons, demonstrations of sword and knife making by bladesmiths of the Aranyik Village – famous for their traditional way of forging, as well as demonstrations of other forms of Thai martial arts, which have developed in different parts of Thailand. Also, there will be opportunities for visitors to put a Sak Yant tattoo on their bodies or Muay Thai clothing.
For more information, contact the TAT Call Centre 1672.
International Public Relations Division
Tourism Authority of Thailand
Tel: +66 (0) 2250 5500 ext. 4545-48
Fax: +66 (0) 2250 0246
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