Muay Thai Rules and Regulations


Muay Thai Apparel:

  1. Muay Thai Short
  2. Mouth piece
  3. Groin Protector
  4. Gloves:
    Weight Class Glove Weight
    Mini Flyweight – Junior Featherweight 6 ounces / 132 grams
    Featherweight – Welterweight 8 ounces / 227 grams
    Junior Middleweight and up 10 ounces / 284 grams

Fouls in Muay Thai:

  1. Eye poking
  2. Head butting
  3. Throwing, back breaking or locking opponents arms using Judo or wrestling techniques
  4. Falling over or going after falling down or getting up opponent
  5. Rope grabbing to fight or for other purposes
  6. Using provocative manners and words during contest
  7. Disobeying referee’s orders
  8. Knee striking at opponents protective cup
  9. Catching the opponents leg and pushing forward more than 2 steps without using any striking
  10. Intentional falling to take advantage over his opponent
  11. Intentional delay the action after falling out of the ring

Muay Thai Bout Duration:

All non-championship bouts shall be 3 rounds. All championship bouts shall have 5 rounds. Amateur rounds will be 2 minutes in duration. Professional rounds will be 3 minutes in duration. A one minute rest period will occur between each round.

Junior MUAY THAI Rules

Junior MUAY THAI Rules (JMTR)

Junior Round Times
Ages 8 to 15: 1:30 Minute Rounds – 1 Minute Rests.
Ages 16 & 17: 2:00 Minute Rounds – 1 Minute Rests.

    1. NO ELBOWS are Allowed In IKFJunior MUAY THAI Bouts.
    2. Fighters may strike with Punches, Kicks and Knees;
      • KICKS (shin or foot) & KNEES are allowed to BOTH legs (not the knees) of each fighter.
      • KICKS may strike body and head as well.
      • KNEES are NOT ALLOWED TO STRIKE ABOVE The SHOULDERS, Only below the Shoulder Line.
    3. Clinching is allowed as long as 1 fighter is ACTIVE WITHIN the clinch.
    5. Fighters are allowed to catch their opponents leg and take 1 step forward. After 1 step, the fighter holding the leg must STRIKE before taking a second step or more.
    6. Sweeps (With instep of foot) are not allowed but a fighter may “KICK” his/her opponents supporting leg with the top of their foot or shin, NOT the instep as in a karate style sweep.
    7. No strikes are allowed to the groin or joints of the leg.
    8. In TRUE Muay Thai as with these rules, FLASH KNOCKDOWNS where the knocked down fighter rises up immediately after being knocked down are NOT COUNTED AS A KNOCKDOWN OR STANDING 8 COUNT.
    9. Direct (Side Kick Style) kicks to the front of a fighters legs Are NOT ALLOWED.
    10. Kicks (shin or foot) may strike the inside and outside of each fighters legs.
    1. Shorts are mandatory under IKFMUAY THAI RULES. This will curtail the crowd from yelling at a fighter to “Stop Kicking To The Legs” which is often heard at ringside if the fighter is wearing Long Pants.
    1. ALL EQUIPMENTUsed by EVERY FIGHTER on EVERY IKF must be approved by the
    2. Foot Pads are NOT ALLOWED
    3. Chest Pads are Mandatory in ALL Junior Muay Thai RuleDivision Bouts.
    4. Headgear Is Mandatory.
    5. Shin Pads Are Mandatory.
    6. Groin Cup is Mandatory.
    7. Mouthpiece is Mandatory.
    8. Hand wraps are Mandatory.
    9. Fight Gloves (That will be supplied by all IKFEvent Promoters) are Mandatory. 8 & 10 Ounce Gloves. See Weight ClassesFor Glove Sizes. (10 & 12 ounce size used in Amateur Tournament Competition)
    1. Ages 8 to 15: 1:30 Minute Rounds – 1 Minute Rests.
    2. Ages 16 & 17: 2:00 Minute Rounds – 1 Minute Rests.
    1. World, Intercontinental, Continental & National Title bouts on a Regular Event is 5 Rounds.
      • Any TOURNAMENT Bout is 3 rounds.
    2. State and Regional Title bouts on a Regular Event is 4 Rounds.
      • Any TOURNAMENT Bout is 3 rounds.
    3. Non Title bouts on a Regular Event: 3 Rounds.


The 3 knockdown rule is ALWAYS in effect in IKF kickboxing unless otherwise noted between the promoter, referee and IKFRepresentative at the event.
The IKF 3 knockdown rule is as follows:

  • If a fighter is knocked down to the mat 3 times in one round OR given 3 standing 8 counts in one round, the bout is automatically over.

A fighter cannot be saved by the bell except in the final round.

A boot to boot sweep in any division is NOT counted as a knockdown.

Leg checking is permitted with the shin, but not with the foot.

Front leg sweeps, foot to foot, boot to boot, to the inside & outside of opponents front foot are permitted by BOTH feet of the striker/sweeper. No spin sweeps. (In MuayThai Rules ONLY, the supporting “Rear” leg is also allowed to be sweeped)

Slips will not count as a knockdown or a standing 8 count in ANY Fighting division.

Standing 8 Count is Always used in the IKF. If a fighter looks helpless and receives several blows to the head or body but continues to stand, not move and not defend him or herself, the referee will give the fighter a standing 8 count and, if the referee feels it is necessary, may stop the fight at that time.

If a fighter loses by TKO or Knockout from a blow to the head, the IKF WILL suspend him/her from competition for a minimum of 30 days for a TKO, 45+ days for a KO, for medical and safety reasons.

If a fighter is knocked down to the ring floor or falls to the floor, he/she must get up under their own power.

If a fighter is knocked down, the other fighter must retreat to farthest neutral corner.

If a fighter drops his mouthpiece 3 times during a round, he/she will be disqualified from the match and lose by a technical knockout.

If a fighter or trainer cuts the strings or ANY part of their fight gloves, they will be liable for the cost of a NEW pair of gloves. Payment is DEMANDED at the event and paid to the promoter. Pro Fighters: The Glove Fee will be taken from your purse before you are paid your purse.