Originally Posted by dyna
How are Muay Thai fighters their cardio?
How is it compared to elite welterweight boxers?
Depends where they're from and train.
Short answer, your average Thai compares well and at elite level probably has superior cardio. Serious non Thai fighters training out of Thailand probably compare quite well. It's hard for non Thais training in their home countries to reach an elite level unless they are fully pro, as many are balancing regular jobs along side their training although the nature of the sport does demand a high level of cardio even at a basic level. 5 rounds on the pads MT would have even super fit Ricky Burns blowing pretty hard.
Thai Muay Thai fighters are some of the fittest super conditioned fighters on the planet with tremendous cardio. Remember these guys are essentially "born" or "bred" to only fight form a very young age. They are "owned" or purchased by a gym or promotional team and are akin to workhorses in a stable whose life involves pretty much only training year in year out. They train a minimum of 6 hours a day, 6 days a week with no distractions and no down time and very little time off except for western New Year and Thai New Year Songkhran. They are commodities that grow up in the gym where they live eat and breath only Muay Thai for often over a decade sometimes two. These guys including the top P4P boyz also fight very often, twice a month for years developing records in the 100s, unlike the only 2 fights a year the current Elite boxing welters limit themselves to.
An Elite boxers cardio needs to be pretty shit hot and impressive to push through 12 rounds at a hard pace, MT is only 5 rounds but in MT you use you're whole body, knees, clinching, kicking all energy sapping techniques that are deployed at an ever increasing pace as the speed of the fight increases as the rounds progress. Unlike boxing the most intense rounds are the last two, so the momentum of the fight builds rather than decreases as is the case in western boxing.
I'm not saying one form has better or worse cardio than the other as both are tremendously demanding sports that even at just a basic level compared to many other sports need a relatively high level of cardio to even train in semi comfortable manner. MT fighters train in a very similar manner to western boxers using many of the same methods and with very much the same mentality and fitness goals.