Thai Boxing: Wai Kru Ritual
Before entering the ring many fighters perform rituals. Some kneel before the ring, others might pray with their coach or by themselves or perform a series of repetitive movements, such as touching the ring ropes 3 times. Thai boxers always climb over the top rope when entering the ring, because in Thai culture the head is considered to be more important than the feet, which are thought to be dirty. It is therefore important to always have the head above the feet while entering the ring.
Once in the ring, the fighters go to the centre and bow to each side. Now begins the Wai Kru ritual or (Wai khru ram muay). The Wai Kru usually starts with the fighter walking around the ring, counter-clockwise. This could be described as “sealing the ring”, showing that the match is between only these two combatants. The ritual is both practical and spiritual. In a practical sense, it prepares the body for combat.