All photos by Mathieu Sly
The sport of Muaythai that we know and love today came to be through the the combination of the formalized ancient styles of muay (Muay Boran) and British Boxing- traditional rope wraps gave way to boxing gloves, matches began to take place in international regulation boxing rings, and timed rounds were introduced. Muaythai and British Boxing were both taught in the curriculum at Suan Kulap College, and from 1925 to 1935 King Rama VII pushed for codified rules to be put in place.
Ontario has now seen Muaythai and Boxing come together in a different way on October 14th, thanks to Bloor Street Fitness & Boxing with the promotion of an amateur event jointly hosting both sports through their respective organizations- Muaythai Ontario and Boxing Ontario. The club has hosted a muaythai program for over 5 years, having seen Toronto based World Champion Simon Marcus as their instructor for a period of time. The program is currently led by Nathan Sharp and Randy “Super” Colepaugh.
Bloor Street Fitness & Boxing hosts competitive events every 3 months, but this was the first time including Muaythai on the program. The club’s energetic owner, Paul Ryan, welcomed the combatants to the ring, stating the gym’s love for all the arts. Paul reinforced that history was being made as the first time that government recognized organizations have come together to support a jointly sanctioned Muaythai & Boxing event, and also celebrated the occasion with an impressive harmonica solo at intermission.
A packed house cheered loudly for the four nak muay who stepped in to the ring. Feedback from the event was extremely positive, with the club’s General Manager Sarah Kelahear expressing her excitement for the sport’s return at their next show. Muaythai Ontario looks forward to working closely with Bloor Street Fitness & Boxing and Boxing Ontario to help set the standard for combative sports across the province.