The life of a CEO is a constant grind, and you’d be hard pressed to find someone in a company that works harder than the CEO. You can’t rise to the top without putting in the maximum work and effort day in and day out. To be able to perform at your best for 20 hours per day, seven days per week, you need to be in peak physical shape and have mental clarity. By sharpening the mind and the body, a CEO can perform at the highest levels regardless of the situations they are put in. Muay Thai is an outlet that allows you to do just that.

Muay Thai is combat sport of Thailand that blends striking techniques (kicks, punches, knees, and elbows) with various clinch variations and trips. The sport is extremely strenuous and requires a tremendous amount of physical preparation and mental focus. Muay Thai fighters and CEOs are alike in a lot of ways, but one thing that stands out is the aggression one must possess to be successful in the ring and in the business world. A successful CEO and a Muay Thai champion have a very similar mindset. They will not be outworked, and they will push themselves to be the best. When a CEO shows that level of dedication, it sets an example for the company of what success looks like, and it also shows clients what you will go through for them.

Michael Koch before a professional Muay Thai fight

Michael Koch prior to a professional Muay Thai fight

Learning the basics of Muay Thai is no different than starting a company. You need to have a strong desire to learn as much information as you can in order to improve. As you grow and expand your knowledge you will encounter new challenges, and you will need to make adjustments to overcome those challenges. Pushing yourself to improve every day is the key to your advancement, and you can never get complacent with your progress. There is always room for improvement. The only thing you can truly control is how hard you work and how much time you put into achieving your goal. Hard work breeds success.

Great leaders all have the ability to be led by those who have been there before them. In Muay Thai, being humble and allowing your trainer to instruct you will accelerate your growth as a fighter. You must trust in your trainer, and your training partners, like a CEO must trust in their advisors and employees. While Muay Thai is an individual sport in competition, it takes the help of a passionate and trustworthy team to become a great fighter.

A Muay Thai fight is a beautiful yet brutal artform where one small mistake can be the difference between a win and a loss. The dedication that goes into preparing for a fight is the same dedication a CEO takes into preparing for every meeting. Months of training culminate into a 15 minute physical chess match. You need to be calculated, precise, aggressive, and determined to come out on top.