Morris becomes certified Muay Thai instructor
Deondre Morris broke new ground after becoming Bermuda’s first certified Muay Thai head instructor.
The Bermuda Muay Thai Federation chairman completed a tough course in Bangkok, Thailand, this summer conducted by grandmaster Thohsaphon Sitiwatjana.
“Bermuda has never had an officially licensed instructor who can pass down grades,” Morris said. “For us to move forward as a sport somebody has to do it, and so that’s why I bit the bullet and reached out to grandmaster Thohsaphon.
“He’s the head instructor of all of Thailand, who also wrote the curriculum for the entire country, and so I went to study under him. Bermuda needs a foundation, and any foundation needs to be solid, so for us to be training other people we need to be formally trained. That was the thing we were lacking.
“I don’t see myself as a trailblazer; I’m just doing what’s needed. I just want to give people what we didn’t have.”
Morris’s mental and physical fortitude was put to the test during the weeklong course.
“We trained twice daily for maybe three hours doing tons of drills and learning his [Thohsaphon’s] system and numbers,” he said.
“We had to learn the drills and then practice them on each other. At the end of the course, we had to do demonstrations in front of grandmaster Thohsaphon, a panel of other masters and the representative of the Thai Ministry of Education because he is backed by the ministry.
“It was definitely worth it and I have become a better man from the experience.
“I knew it was going to be tiring, and I wanted to be at my best, so I went to Thailand early and had already spent 2½ months there training Muay Thai before doing the course. That definitely helped, but it was still tiring.”
The 29-year-old became the island’s first class A Muay Thai world champion after his unanimous points decision win over Canadian Gavin Young at the Woodbine Racetrack & Casino in Toronto almost two years ago.
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