The sport of Muay Thai has been Thailand's representative to the martial arts scene for several decades. In fact, this particular combat sport is one of the most popular sports in the entire world. To match yourself with one of the best martial arts in the world, you have to have the proper gear and equipment, which is why we should talk about getting the best Muay Thai shorts.
In this guide, we walk you through the rich history of Muay Thai shorts, certain things to avoid, how to find the perfect fit, and many, many more. If you would like to embrace the world of Muay Thai and learn more about its roots in Thailand, then keep on reading to learn more.
The History of Muay Thai and Muay Thai Shorts
Muay Thai is a stand-up martial art that involves the use of fists, elbows, knees, and legs (hence the "art of 8 limbs")
Originating from Thailand, the true origin date of the sport is debated, but some say that Muay Thai was utilized as a form of unarmed combat during war times in either the 1600s or the 1700s.
As the sport evolved, so did the gear and equipment. To allow for freedom of movement, Muay Thai shorts were created.
Not only are today's Muay Thai shorts comfortable to wear, but it also allows for a full range of motion as a result of the short length of the shorts, the side slits, and the quality material used.
The elastic waistband and durable material also serve as the best material combinations to ensure full flexibility and fight stances and strikes without worrying about any wardrobe malfunction.
The shorts are so flexible and allow for such a wide range of motion that you can even do side splits with them without damaging the pair of shorts.
Things to be Cautious of When it Comes to Muay Thai Shorts and Thai Culture
The majority of Muay Thai shorts are made in Thailand, but there are some manufacturers who outsource designs and production to other countries, which is where certain issues may arise.
There's a few design placements that are inappropriate or disrespectful not just to the sport of Muay Thai, but also to the country and culture of Thailand.
For example, having any logo or sign that is sacred or holy to Thai culture printed on the shorts is disrespectful, especially if they are situated around the crotch area.
Examples would be the Thai flag, certain faces or caricatures of well-known Thai people, or symbols that represent Thai royalty.
This is not meant to deter you from getting cool or unique designs for a pair of training Muay Thai shorts, but rather to make you aware that there are certain rules to follow to respect the sport of Muay Thai and the country of Thailand itself.
Go with a trusted brand that produces their shorts (and the style of shorts) in Thailand to be absolutely safe.
Sizing Guide (How to Get the Perfect Fit)
The sizing guide is pretty intuitive or easy to understand.
Every trusted brand of Muay Thai should have a sizing chart prepared for you before purchasing, but for the sake of discussion, there are only two things you would need to be aware of: waist size and length.
Waist sizes are either denoted as small, medium, large, and so on or labeled based on the actual waist measurement of the waistband in inches.
In most cases, due to the quality and elastic properties of Muay Thai shorts, certain sizes (or size ranges) can fit you. But if you are aiming for a truly snug and perfect fit, we would recommend that you measure any pair of shorts that you have at home that fits you perfectly and take note of the waist size and length to have a better idea of what size pair of Muay Thai shorts to look for.
The Types of Materials Used
The materials or blend of materials used to make a pair of Muay Thai shorts can determine whether or not they're great or otherwise poor quality.
For the most part, these shorts can come in pure 100% polyester material, quality satin mateierial, 100% polyester satin material, nylon, microfiber material, or a blend between any of the aforementioned.
All materials above are lightweight, durable, and extremely flexible, but to determine which material composition would make for the best Muay Thai shorts (also good as MMA shorts, Muay Thai boxing shorts, or kickboxing shorts), let us run through important aspects to consider.
Traditional (or retro) Muay Thai training involves frequent training sessions, which means you either have to have several pairs of shorts or have shorts that dry very quickly after getting soaked.
For this particular aspect, we recommend going with polyester material or polyester satin material as these two dry much quicker than their nylon counterpart.
Tear-resistant shorts are really amazing for several reasons, notably the ability to withstand both high-powered washing machines and dryers.
Specific to MMA, Muay Thai, and fight sports in general, any nylon, polyester, or satin shorts that you wear with tear-resistant properties would mean that you can go all out in training and sparring sessions without thinking about the likelihood of any ripping or holes forming.
Side Cuts or Side Slits
Side cuts or side slits are important as they provide you with an added range of motion that you would not be able to get out of traditional or casual fitness shorts.
For this particular aspect, any material or fabric would do as most are sold with pre-cut slits.
Most garments or apparel are machine-washable, making it easier to cycle through a range of clothes without having to worry about the amount of time and effort needed to have them cleaned and ready for the next use.
When looking for Muay Thai shorts, go with brands that market their shorts as "machine-washable" as this would significantly help you save time and effort having to manually wash them after every training session.
Good Muay Thai shorts ideally are supposed to be lightweight, and no one should tell you otherwise.
Having a clunky, heavy pair of Muay Thai boxing shorts for any form of martial art, whether it be MMA training, kickboxing training, or boxing training, is not good for overall movement and footwork.
There is no easy way to tell which pair of shorts (in the range of brands and options to pick from) is the most lightweight. We simply recommend visiting an actual store and trying each pair of shorts out yourself to find out which is the best for Muay Thai or MMA training.
Texture and Comfort
Last but not the least, it is very important to consider texture and comfort, especially if you frequently find yourself in extended Muay Thai, MMA, or kickboxing training sessions.
You would not want your legs to feel itchy or icky because of the pair of Muay Thai boxing shorts you are wearing.
Texture and comfort are actually really subjective and may vary from person to person but we would suggest going with a 100% polyester or 100% polyester satin pair as opposed to nylon shorts as the former are known to be way more comfortable and less irritating on the skin it covers than the latter.
The Types of Designs and Features
Muay Thai is a culturally rich sport and aspects of this culture have been expressed amazingly through Muay Thai gear and equipment, most especially Muay Thai shorts.
Aside from finding the best Muay Thai shorts based on performance, it may also serve you well to find the best design in terms of the following:
Wide vs Narrow Leg Openings
Range of movement is one of the most important aspects of Muay Thai training, which is why most gear and apparel are developed with range of motion and flexibility in mind, for all reputable brands.
For this particular aspect, it would be better to go with wide leg openings rather than the traditional size for greater flexibility.
Slits are very important if you wear lengthy Muay Thai shorts to yet again allow for a better range of motion.
The slit does not have to go too deep, but do not bother with slits that are too short. Try to find different options and make comparisons to find the best Muay Thai shorts in terms of slits.
A good, durable, and elastic waistband is important not just to hold up your shorts to your waist, but also to have something to wear that is thick but light enough to absorb the impact of certain shots that hit the waist area.
For this particular aspect, most traditional Muay Thai shorts sport a rather thick and stretchable waistband. This is the best option in the market right now.
The length of your shorts is also an important factor to consider. Most traditional brands offer traditional or retro Muay Thai shorts that are really short to allow for better airflow in the lower body.
While this may be the most optimal, some casual Muay Thai practitioners may opt for the alternatives during training sessions such as mid-size or long Muay Thai shorts.
As long as there are slits, motion should not be affected significantly.
Style and Brand
The style and brand should be considered as your "cherry on top" if you are really basing your purchase on performance and quality.
However, if you would like to heavily consider style and brand at the forefront of your purchase process, then we cannot blame you.
Each brand offers a gear style that is unique and special, so if you have a preferred theme or style preference (retro/traditional vs modern), go with the brand that can offer the gear and apparel you seek.
The Best Muay Thai Shorts in the Market Today
Picking out and buying Muay Thai shorts or gear is fairly difficult due to the sheer amount of style and brand choices in the market today.
Listed below are the top-quality Muay Thai shorts we have found in the market today. Check them out below, considering both quality material and quality performance, among other factors.
1. Top King Boxing Muay Thai Shorts (Best Premium Shorts)
The perfectly named Top King Boxing Shorts may come at a higher-than-average price point, but what you get in terms of texture and comfort is almost unbeatable.
These Top King shorts are offered in both modern-day and retro-style designs so there are a ton of options and colorways available to select from.
These Top King shorts are also shorter and more light, so expect to feel this difference during training and sparring sessions.
The Top King shorts are made of 100% polyester satin, so it will be very convenient to clean and dry these shorts just in time for the next training session.
2. Venum Bangkok Inferno Muay Thai Shorts (Best in Minimalist Style)
If you want an eye-catching design that does not overdo the logos, patterns, and colors, then the Venum Bangkok Inferno shorts are just for you.
Coming in limited colorways and a singular design, this product makes up for its lack of variety by improving on performance and stitching.
In fact, this product can even be used for sanctioned bouts and competitions.
3. Fairtex Muay Thai Shorts (Best Muay Thai Shorts for Big Guys and Gals)
Ranging from small to XXL, the Fairtex Muay Thai shorts are amazing for large individuals who would like to get into the sport of Muay Thai.
The quality in these Fairtex Muay Thai shorts is top-notch, just like any other gear that the Fairtex brand produces.
These Fairtex shorts are made of 100% polyester satin so comfort and washability are not a problem.
These Fairtex shorts also come in a variety of designs, so if you are after retro-style shorts, then this is the product for you.
4. Lumpinee Retro Original Muay Thai Shorts (Best Retro Muay Thai Shorts)
If we are talking retro, then the Lumpinee Retro Original shorts are a great addition to your collection.
Sporting a classic design and traditional sizing, these shorts are great for mobility, range of movement, and flexibility.
These can also be used for casual gym use and other combat sports because of how comfortable and efficient it is.
5. Twins Special Muay Thai Boxing Shorts (Best Muay Thai Training Shorts)
If you want to train in style without sacrificing reliability, durability, quality, and performance, then the Twins Special Muay Thai Boxing Shorts are perfect for you.
The Twins Special series (and the Twins brand itself) is so popular for offering high-quality gear and products.
This Twins Special product is arguably the best pair for any type of Muay Thai training, whether it be sparring, light pad work, or heavy bag sessions.
The Twins shorts are built with 100% polyester so you have a quick-drying pair that is tear-resistant and durable, even during the most punishing workout circuits.
6. Fluory Muay Thai Shorts (Best Women's Muay Thai Shorts)
For women who want to commit to the sport of Muay Thai, the Fluory shorts are an amazing pick not just because of the quality and the reputable brand, but also because of the unique designs and colors used that are not readily offered by other brands.
Made with 100% polyester for a lightweight feel, these Twins shorts come with aggressive slits for great range of movement and flexibility that would allow you to use this pair in sports outside of Muay Thai such as kickboxing or MMA.
7. Anthem Athletics Infinity (Best Kids Muay Thai Shorts)
For the young ones, we suggest the Anthem Athletics Infinity Shorts that are less traditional and retro, more modern-looking quality shorts.
For parents set on buying Muay Thai shorts for their kids that are not retro-style, we find this Anthem Athletics product to be one of the best in performance because of the quality materials used, particularly satin.
This Anthem Athletics pair is a low-profile product that can be used in any physical activity without having to look like it is exclusively for Muay Thai.
Conclusion (Plus Our Favorite)
Buying shorts may have never been as complex or challenging as this, but if you want the best for yourself in training and competition, then this guide should help your narrow down the list of options.
As for our favorite, we have to go with none other than the Fairtex company's shorts. Fairtex has long been one of the industry leaders in providing top-notch gear and apparel, and the shorts are not an exception to the general rule.
If you need a refresher on bits of Muay Thai history or identifying the best Muay Thai shorts in the market today, then don't forget this guide.