I was back in Bangkok a couple of weeks ago for a mini break, while I was there I had a chance to go visit the newly opened RSM academy. RSM ( Rajadomnern, Singha Muay Thai) is a new type of gym that’s beginning to pop up in Bangkok.
With the popularity of Muay Thai on the rise in Thailand, it’s not surprising that more and more Thai people are becoming interested in our beloved sport. What is more surprising is who’s coming out to train. It’s the ladies who seem to be flocking to Muay Thai.
The well to do, and fashionable (Hi- So) have abandoned their traditional gyms and have been turning out to smash pads. RSM claims to have over 450+ members. Their clientele skews heavily towards the ladies. Most of their growth and exposure has come through the Instagram feeds of their many celebrity and movie star clientele (Dala)
RSM is located on the 3rd floor of a shopping center called Scene Space on Thonglor 13. The center consists of a Belgian beer garden, wine bars, Japanese and Korean restaurants.
I did a series way back called drive by muay thai, where I looked at a few gyms that catered to people who wanted a place to drop in and train.
RSM is far more then that, they’ve tapped into the fact that the average Thai person doesn’t want to train at a muay thai camp. They want to train in a place with clean showers and valet parking!
RSM was started by a group of young Thai entrepreneurs who are muay thai fans and recognised this growing desire and demographic. They had connections with Singha brewery and Rajadomnern stadium that became the major sponsors of this academy.
RSM is a Muay Thai Academy, that’s got a full curriculum; It’s an ideal place where newbies can come learn the fundamentals of muay thai, in an environment that’s friendly and unintimidating.
RSM can handle the needs of those striving for a bit more then a weekend pad session. Their trainers are all ex-stadium champions who can put you through wringer. As Rajadomnern is a main sponsor of the academy they can arrange fights for professional fighters.
I rolled in on a Thursday mid afternoon, just as the gym was clearing out. I was greeted at reception and pointed towards the changing room. As I entered the space I was greeted by a trainer who took my ticket, and pointed me towards ropes. He stuck a timer to the wall next to me and said 10 min. ok?
Afterwards, he watched my shadow for a couple of minutes and had me work the bag for a couple of rounds before we did our pad session.
He was attentive and critical, which is nice. In between rounds he insisted on crunches… while I was training something caught my attention. There was another private going on in the same studio space… I’m not sure why the kid bothered or what he was doing there, as he had little to no interest in training. In fact he was texting or calling his friend between rounds… I was less astonished by his behavior, but more taken back by the trainer.
The trainer, was actually correcting his technique… I thought to myself what’s the point? Why correct him? He clearly doesn’t give a shit. Maybe it’s professional pride? Maybe the trainers at the academy are paid well, but I was pretty surprised, a good sign that you’ll be looked after.
RSM isn’t going to be for everyone. Most of the muay thai purests on MMT, will snear… it’s fine. There’s a place for everything.
I had a good session, and would go back without hesitation. If your living in Bangkok and don’t particularly want to train at a traditional camp, this might be an option for you. If your visiting Bangkok, and feel like training and can’t or don’t want to walk into a camp for a day… this is an option for you.
You can bulk buy classes which will lower the fees, but training there isn’t cheap.
550 Baht/day for a group class.
850 Baht/day for advance training (semi-private training/ small group not more than 5).
1,500 Baht/day for a private training or professional training (1-on-1 with trainers)
On a side note, when I finished training, I hit a place just on the 2nd floor called Bonchon Chicken… it’s a Korean Fried Chicken place, with Kimchee Coles Slaw… absolutely ridiculous.