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Thailand's Push for Muay Thai in Olympics

Shinawatra Paetongtarn, the deputy chairman of Thailand's National Soft Power Strategy Committee, is leading efforts to elevate Muay Thai to Olympic status.

Muay Thai

Paetongtarn has outlined a comprehensive strategy to bolster Muay Thai's global prominence, aiming to position it as a key element of Thailand's soft power arsenal. Central to this strategy is the ambition to see Muay Thai included in the Olympic Games, envisioning a future where Thai athletes compete on the world stage.

In addition to Olympic aspirations, Paetongtarn's plans include initiatives to enhance Muay Thai's appeal to international audiences. One such initiative involves introducing a ranking system akin to Taekwondo's belt ranking system, aimed at increasing the sport's accessibility and appeal.

She also emphasized the importance of professional development for Muay Thai instructors and the promotion of Muay Thai competitions across all levels.

Srivikorn Pimol, Advisor to the Prime Minister and Chairman of the Sports Sub-Committee of the National Soft Power Strategy Committee, highlighted the government's commitment to promoting Muay Thai as a soft power asset. Pimol recently met with Bangkok Governor Chadchart Sittipunt to discuss plans to deploy Muay Thai instructors to schools in Bangkok, a move aimed at fostering grassroots interest in the sport.

Furthering their international outreach, the committee is exploring the possibility of organizing a prestigious Muay Thai master class in England. This initiative aims to provide foreigners with the opportunity to learn from renowned Muay Thai masters, including Rodtang Jitmuangnon, Buakaw Banchamek, and Superbon Singha Mawynn, in a full-day event scheduled for April.


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