Graduation System (SITYODTONG)
Traditionally Muay Thai grading was not structured as it is today. A Kru would recognize those skilled in the art by bestowing on them blessed Prajeat/Kuang Rang (armbands). Historically, the arm band was presented to warriors on the battle field by their Masters. The modern day fighter still wears the Arm Band usually presented to him by his Grand Master – Master or teacher.
As Muay Thai became popular in the West, a grading curriculum was developed based on a concept of structured learning and the ancient traditions of Muay Thai. In 1977 some of the more renouned Masters established a syllabus using the Prajeat/Kruang Rang where other styles had used belts. The Muay Thai practitioner can be awarded his or her armband through an assessment process called Rank or Khan.
Each rank is awarding a student on his/her ability to show the technique clearly executing balance power speed and accuracy. The student will need to show that they have a good attitude and are humble and, most importantly, loyal towards to their art and their Master. The Kru Muay Association now recognizes the learning and teaching skills of a Kru and awards rank accordingly to those who demonstrate mastery of techniques, along with those properties that epitomize the revered status of a Kru (teacher) in Thai culture. A Kru’s rank is elevated as he shows greater skill in passing on his knowledge and for his dedication and efforts to promote the proper teaching of Muay Thai.
Muay Boran is the original, traditional form of Muay Thai. In ancient times, it was a form of self-defense and warfare used in the battlefields and in conjunction with (or without) weapons! Any part of the body was used (including the head) to strike down an opponent as quickly as possible, no matter what size, weight or how many. Influenced by western boxing Muay Boran transformed into a ring sport with rules and weight Divisions which we call Muay Thai.
As with all martial arts, Muay Thai also has a ranking system showing the level of progression of the student. In keeping with the tradition and history of the sport, Kru Ash’s khan exam follows the rules and regulations set by the large Muay Thai organization in the world, which is based in Thailand. This system was first developed for Muay Boran, One can even go as far as to say that Muay Boran is the science and Muay Thai is the sport. For many years Thai people have kept this system a secret from the rest of the world and nowadays it is for everyone to discover and enjoy with a certified Kru.