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Sports Tested: Muay Thai at Absolute MMA

A heart-pumping hour of non-stop cardio at this new Jing'an gym


Ever wonder how useful a few extra arms could be? The “The Art of Eight Limbs,” more commonly known as Muay Thai, may just help you feel a bit more invincible. We head to new Jing’an gym Absolute MMA to find out what we can learn from their one-hour Muay Thai class.


The Experience

What makes Muay Thai distinctive from other styles of martial arts is its use of punches, kicks, elbows, and knees for competitive striking and self-defense. Absolute MMA’s take on Muay Thai consists of a heart-pumping hour of non-stop cardio and technique training. To say the class is a physical challenge is a massive understatement.



The instructor, Jowad, leads students through a run-of-the-mill warm up that rapidly changes into fast footwork. The next 15 minutes are spent practicing the usual punches, hooks, and jabs with partners.



As you become comfortable with one movement, Jowad introduces another, and modifies the combinations to keep students on their toes. With kicking, for instance, you’re given the task of striking heavy bags with your knees, before finally putting your new skills together and practicing a move combination with your partner. As if surviving those 55 minutes isn’t difficult enough, Jowad finishes the class with five minutes of strength training, rewarding students with sets of planks, push-ups, and squats.



The class is tough, but controlled, as Jowad emphasizes proper technique over speed and power. You will feel fierce—and you will definitely be sore.



About The Gym

This location of Absolute Mixed Martial Arts (Absolute MMA) is the first China branch of the world-class Australia-headquartered mixed martial arts gym. They’ve merged with Warzone, a Shanghai-born MMA gym. Aside from Muay Thai, Absolute offers a variety of classes including MMA, Brazilian jiu-jitsu, MMA, boxing, and an MMA FIT program, as well as all-women’s boxing and Brazilian jiu-jitsu for children. They also have classes on conditioning and weightlifting.



The space includes mat space, cage walls, weights area, and changing rooms. They even have gloves to borrow, so there’s no need to buy your own on Taobao.



The Rundown

Absolute’s international staff seems highly trained, and can get you up to speed whether you’re a bona-fide martial artist or just looking to shake up your fitness routine.

Memberships start at RMB1,000 a month and are all inclusive with access to unlimited classes. One-off classes are RMB200. Free trials for first timers.


Written by Sydney Gebroe



What: Absolute MMA

Address: Rm. 301, Bldg. C4, 800 Changde Lu (near Changping Lu) 常德路800号C4栋301室 (近昌平路)

Tel: 158-0170-9103

WeChat: AbsoluteMMA

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