Thailand to Egypt
Ahmed Sadek from Egypt arrived at our Muay Thai gym 3 months ago with the dream of bringing Thailand‘s national sport, Muay Thai, back to his home country. Already a talented Muay Thai practitioner, he told Master Toddy that he wanted to hone his skills both as a Muay Thai fighter and as an instructor, so that he could spread the art of Muay Thai in his country – but most importantly to do it properly.
After 3 months intensive training – living, eating, sleeping and breathing Muay Thai – including graduating from Master Toddy’s Kru Course (high-level instructor certification), he is now on the path to realize his dream.
Not surprisingly, Ahmed will open his new Muay Thai gym as a Master Toddy Franchise Muay Thai gym!
This is Ahmed’s personal account of his time spent at the Academy in Thailand.
From Egypt to Thailand – the Quest for Muay Thai
I love Muay Thai and I am passionate about it. I wanted to be better because I think in Egypt we have a gap in combat sports. Muay Thai helped me grow physically, spiritually and mentally as a person, and I want people in Egypt to get the same experience that I get through Muay Thai.
Egyptians think that Muay Thai is about violence, that it’s not for everyone, only physically strong men. They think that all women and children can do is just traditional martial arts like Taekwondo. I thought to myself, I want to do Muay Thai that is suitable for all people – women, children and even the elderly. I stumbled upon Master Toddy online, and read more about him and what he does. The more I researched, the more I was blown away by his credentials; a man with 55 years of experience who trained more than 40 world champions including legends Ronnie Green and Gina Carano. Also, I saw that he was very successful teaching girls.
I wanted to know how the system works so I tried contacting the gym in Thailand and booking the Kru Course, because I wanted to be able to get the Muay Thai philosophy back to Egypt.
The thing that also got me very excited about Master Toddy’s Muay Thai gym is the variety of training that you get every time, it’s not the same. You get front-kick week, you become very good at it and then you move to roundhouse kicks, then you become very good at that. The training is always very diverse, very varied. His Muay Thai training system works on making you able to get the basics down right before you move on to the next level. So you work on your guard, your defense, and then you move on to working on offense. You have to make the defense good in the beginning before moving on.
Master Toddy knows how to make it fun for everyone, and he knows how to make winners.
Becoming a better Muay Thai fighter with the MTIA system
When I first got to the gym in Thailand I sparred with a lot of fighters whose style was very different from any fighters I sparred with before. Immediately this is where I knew that Master Toddy had something different. They were calm, they were in control, their defense was very good, and everything about the way they sparred was very good. Then I trained every day and got as much knowledge from the trainers, Master Toddy himself and even the fighters who stay longer in Thailand that I could.
During my time here I tried to engage with more trainers and fighters. Master Toddy himself would give me tips, and the amount of improvement in only these 3 months was huge. The 3 months I had at Master Toddy’s was equivalent to or even more than 1 year of my training before that.
As a student of Muay Thai at Master Toddy’s, I feel I’ve become much faster, much smarter as a Muay Thai fighter, and more explosive. I have better balance and much better defense. All this happened in just 3 months. So I can’t imagine if I stayed one more year what it would have been like – but I’m coming back to Thailand, that’s for sure!
Becoming a Muay Thai Kru on behalf of the MTIA
When I first started the Kru Course, I was kind of skeptical about how much I would learn in a short time, but was eventually surprised from the usefulness of getting all this knowledge in one week. I was impressed by its simplicity, its effectiveness and how it can benefit me as a Muay Thai instructor to beginners, intermediate and advanced students. The system teaches you different things that you don’t learn from other Muay Thai gyms. You have different tools to use, different mitts and pads. All this makes it exciting and you gain more skills that you can pass on to the students.
Not only did I develop skills in Muay Thai, but I also developed more skills as a Muay Thai Instructor.
Now after the course I feel like I have a much better understanding of how to hold pads for my students. I feel like the way I hold pads right now is different from anyone who holds pads back home in Egypt, because nobody has been taught by the Master Toddy / MTIA system in Thailand. It’s a completely different kind of system that you won’t see anywhere. It’s different because it gets the student to go with the flow, without correcting and criticizing them constantly. They get to become better just by the way you hold the pads. Correct padwork – angles, power, timing, where you place them in front of the student, and the movement and posture of the pad-holder – all these things will make the Muay Thai student better and more engaged with the trainer.
Bringing back Muay Thai Equipment
I’ve been using Twins gloves before. While they felt good they weren’t great, so when I got here I got my first Cobra Fight Gear glove. It felt really comfortable. I could clinch my fist as if I wasn’t wearing a glove, and I didn’t need to put any wraps around it because it was really comfortable from the inside.
The shin-pads felt very good and very light, and the instructor pads are soft and durable. It just feels good and light hitting these pads.
The teardrop bag that is used at Master Toddy’s has a different design that makes it more focused for students because it has different target areas, so they can work better on their knees, punches, teeps, roundhouse kicks… because there are different target areas surrounding the teardrop bags that makes it generally better for accuracy. And you can uppercut them!
I am bringing back this high quality gear to my students in Egypt, because it’s important to have the right tools for training. Having the right gear makes training more enjoyable.
The challenges of running a Muay Thai Gym
What actually got me interested to go in the first place was the fact that I got a response right away to my email, with everything I asked for and more. And every time I replied to an email, I got a similar response. So it made everything easy for me just before I got here, and that is the same service that I’m going to be giving people back home. So from administrative work to actual Muay Thai teaching, there is no better place.
The most important thing about the course is that it’s not just about the skills you have as a Muay Thai instructor, it’s about the attitude, about how to make students happy and engage them to learn Muay Thai. It’s about how to make the best team-working environment at your gym, and how to make a successful business. I’m here the whole time watching Master Toddy practicing what he preaches. The good thing about doing Muay Thai at Master Toddy’s gym in Thailand is that you get to train with him every day, and see how he teaches. That is why I stayed on in Thailand for another 2 months after my Kru Course, and I could see that everything he taught us he was actually doing at his own gym.
Living at a Muay Thai Gym in Thailand
Aside from my personal gains as an instructor and a student of Muay Thai, the environment here, the friends that I’ve made, are all friends that I can call family. Everyone was very helpful; we supported each other with everything, whether it’s a fight, regular training, or even anything that doesn’t necessarily have to do with Muay Thai. That alone made the experience much more worthwhile.
Master Toddy Franchise
What can I say about Master Toddy? It’s different when you see him in YouTube videos and meeting him in person. In the videos, you see a good person, a very enthusiastic person, always positive, always optimistic. Then you meet him in person and you feel the energy much more than that.
If there’s one thing that I’ve learned in Thailand that can really help me as a Muay Thai instructor, it’s the attitude and energy that I got from Master Toddy himself. If I can pass along that same energy that I get from Master Toddy to my students, I think that alone is enough to make my experience a success.
The fact that I can see a legend such as Master Toddy and train under him every single day in Thailand, to me you can’t put a price on that.
I am happy and proud to be the one to start the first Master Toddy Franchise Muay Thai Gym in Egypt.
What Master Toddy has to say
Ahmed has great skill, and he is confident. I believe in him – he will be another most successful instructor in no-time!