I am interested in taking part in Muay Thai as I wish to learn how to defend myself, I understand that the participants are asked to bow to each other and undertake exercises that are derived from religious rituals of Buddhism, but I would not take part in either of these. Muay Thai allow blows to the head; however, participants can wear gloves and pads that can offer protection from strikes and so that the face is not hit. Is it halal for me to take part in Muay Thai?
All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah and that Muhammad, sallallaahu ʻalayhi wa sallam, is His slave and Messenger.
There is no religious impediment to playing this sport as long as no physical harm is incurred on the participants by wearing gloves and pads that offer protection to the face and the like of safety measures and provided that the player avoids bowing and the like of Buddhist rituals.
Dr. Wahbah Az-Zuhayli said in his book Al-Fiqh Al-Islaami wa Adillatuh, “If there is no harm incurred to either side in boxing or wrestling, then they are permissible. They are also permissible if they train a person in strength, combat, and self-defense. The Prophet, sallallaahu ʻalayhi wa sallam, wrestled with Rukaanah and defeated him.”
Allaah knows best.
You can search for fatwa through many choices