Wai Kru Day is a chance for students to honor their teachers, pay respect and solidify the student/teacher relationship of passing on knowledge in any given study. For Muay Thai students, this is a day to formally thank our instructors.
Petchrungruang is over 30 years old and many krus have been part of the family gym in that time, and some of the students have grown into teachers themselves for younger generations. Kru Den was a teacher to Pi Nu, who is now the head instructor of the gym and a kru himself. Filippo was a student of Kru Nu and now teaches at the gym as well. It’s a wonderful, living process.
Every year there is a National Wai Kru Day held in all the schools across Thailand and the Thai government comes up with a “motto” for each year. This year (2017) the motto is to the affect that a good teacher is also an image of the Buddha for his/her students (“ชาติพัฒนา ด้วยครูดี มีคุณภาพ ศิษย์ซาบซึ้ง ในพระคุณครู”). The patience and loving kindness expressed by the teachers of Petchrungruang absolutely embody this motto.
For those who were not able to make it to this year’s ceremony but consider themselves students of Kru Nu, here is a short video of the blessing he offered in the ring during the ceremony. In short: work hard, be a good person, and take care of yourselves.
And here are some wonderful photos of the ceremony as well.
All the students in afternoon training, teachers from front to back: Kru Watt, Kru Gai, Kru Filippo, Kru Den, and Kru Nu
Thongchai and Dti led the Bot Wai Kru chant – everyone creates a link by touching each other so that a single offering is given to all the teachers and by all the students at once
The Buddha was brought in to the ring for the ceremony (there is always a statue above the ring as well)
Kru Den giving his blessings.
On June 9th Kru Nu will drive a group of fighters up to Saraburi for a card, a portion of which will be televised. Mahaheng (Team), Geng Gat, and Angie are all fighting and Angie’s fight will be broadcast on Channel 24.
This is a big step for Angie, our kathoey (“ladyboy”) fighter who has been training for only a little under 2 years. She’s had difficulty finding opponents to face, since the Muay Thai Authorities want her to fight with men but she’s still a beginner and an adult, so the men she’s facing are far more experienced and often quite strong. They don’t take it easy on her. But Angie has a solid record and has beat some good opposition in a string of wins, so we all feel very confident in her upcoming match this Friday.
Mahaheng is the most experienced of the 3 fighters and will be the final fight of the card. He’s a solid fighter and is sure to give his opponent a hard time in the clinch.
Geng Gat is the most recently signed fighter to Petchrungruang Gym. He has a couple fights at Lumpinee and is still gaining experience, but with a winning record against good competition.
Petchrungruang fighters are sponsored by Royal Thai Residence.
This past weekend, on May 27th, some of our fighters took the morning off from their regular run and participated in the Pattaya Marathon instead. It’s pretty much the same distance as our Silverlake runs (9K) with most of the boys entering the 10K portion of the run. Honestly, it’s a chance for the fighters to do something fun as a group and usually walk away with trophies and medals because they finish faster than most of the “amateur” runners, given that as fighters they run everyday.
Kru Nu is incredibly proud of his son, Bank, who finished 8th place overall out of around 2,500 participants. That means he placed in the adult categories as well, despite only being 16 (for a few more months). But the Petchrungruang Team had 3 finishers in the top 20, which is very impressive: Bank at Overall (8), Pi Nok (Kru Nu’s older brother) at Overall (11), and Sun at Overall (17).