I practiced muay thai for a year and my teacher made it clear we would train all along bare feet on the hard ground.

Of course I had feet injuries after repeatedly kicking the mitts. At first, I thought I would hold on and eventually my feet would get used to it.

But it didn't get better and honestly, this is one of the reasons why I didn't follow up.

Would you recommend training on mats or is training on the hard ground really a thing ?

  • 3
    Please do not accept an answer for at least 24 hours. It leaves room for others to write their own answers which could be much better than mine! Commented Nov 6, 2015 at 13:55
  • What were the foot injuries? Commented Nov 6, 2015 at 15:37
  • Blood Blister. I wasn't the only one having it even though I had the worst ones Commented Nov 6, 2015 at 15:44

6 Answers 6


I see no trouble training pure striking on a hard floor. It's also not clear that the floor was the cause of your injury--you say it is from hitting pads.

If throws, clinch, or takedowns are even a possibility--as they generally should be--then mats make more sense, but that doesn't seem to be the issue here.

  • You know it's like you're suppose to rotate your foot to give more power as you kick. Repeating this on a hard floor started some blood blister. Sometimes I ended up wasting the floor with my blood. Commented Nov 6, 2015 at 15:43
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    @SebastienFERRAND That has little to do with how hard the floor is. The texture of the floor—rough or smooth—is relevant. Were you training enough to get acclimated to training? Commented Nov 6, 2015 at 16:34
  • I was practicing 3 times a week for 2 hours long. Bottom line is : I guess it's alright to train on hard ground after all as long as it looks like we'll get use to it. It doesn't look like it was my case because of a foot problem I omitted to mention - I wouldn't see any progress on the injury seriousness after months. Thanks for feedback ! Commented Nov 12, 2015 at 8:26

I would not recommend staying in any school, regardless of style, that insists on doing something that results in students being injured; this is a sure sign of a McDojo.

That said, what is the hard floor? Is it a nice polished wooden sprung floor? Is it bare weathered concrete in the parking lot? There is a huge difference between those and anything in between. Some hard floors are fine to train on, others are not.

  • I would say in the middle. The kind of floor that wouldn't get you injured unless you practice hard which is what is requiered in muay thai. So I guess it's alright to train on some kind of hard floors, not really for me though :) Commented Nov 6, 2015 at 13:22

We've moved our hap ki do dojang from a place with mats to a place with super flooring as the floor and as yet there have been no feet injuries. We put mats in place when we're throwing and doing take downs. I agree that an instructor who pushes you through injury is a danger.


Would you recommend training on mats or is training on the hard ground really a thing ?

I would really recommend training on mats, no matter the art you do.

I used to train on tiled floors, so we were very careful performing stunts like takedowns and jumping/flying kicks. In Taekwon-do the pattern Choong Moo has a move to jump and spin 360 degrees in the air and land with a knife-hand guarding block on an L-stance. This is not my favourite move to perform on a hard surface!

Landing hard on hard surfaces will easily hurt the knee if not done properly. So train on mats if you can, but if you can't, be careful not to hurt yourself.


As a general rule, I've learned to not do any hard or explosive training on hard floor that doesn't reduce the impact. Even something as small as simple as sprinting is now done on a track where the track absorbs some of the harsh impact. My father used to train on hard floors and now suffers multiple knee problems. What I've learned through hear/say through my mentors in training was that training on hard floor training is a no-go.



It is really good to train in hard ground.

However, I would say to you not to change the floor drastically Start trainning in good hard floors like said before, and then change to the worse when you get used with it.

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