Owner and Head Coach Michael Rakay has been training in Muay Thai for over a decade. Michael was once almost 300 lbs before training in Muay Thai. Bored with traditional workouts Michael started learning Muay Thai to lose weight but quickly became hooked and wanted to compete. During his fighting career Michael was regularly competing for titles on some of the East Coast’s biggest promotions. He was also known for having a heavy right hand which resulted in several KO’s. After injuries forced Michael to retire from competition he dove head first into coaching. As a coach Michael has trained students coming into the gym for their first lesson, as well as cornering experienced fighters for some of the World’s largest promotions. As a Fishtown resident for over a decade, Michael founded Heavy Hitters Thai Boxing to spread his passion for Muay Thai with the community he calls home. When not in the gym Michael can usually be found walking around the neighborhood with his wife Ashley, and daughter, Madelyn frequenting other local businesses and restaurants.
I started learning Muay Thai in 2011, after losing my father to violence. I felt like I needed an outlet and a way to protect myself. Little did I know it would consume me the way it did. It challenged me mentally and physically, more than any sport or workout. In my first year, my body completely transformed. People started asking me what my secret was, and if I would teach them. If there’s one thing I love as much as training, it’s sharing my passion with others and helping them get started on their nak muay journey. I’ve had the opportunity to train people from all walks of life, from kids to CEO’s of Fortune 500 companies. My training was put on hold after the birth of my son, but now I’m back and excited to be part of the Heavy Hitters family.
Ian has been training Muay Thai for over a decade. He has trained all over the United States learning from coaches like Trevor Whitman, Maurice Smith, Damien Trainor and golden era legend Coban. A few years ago his love of Muay Thai brought him to its homeland where he was able to train with champions such as Sittichai. He has an amateur record of 5-1, winning the WKAs in 2014. All of his experiences in the ring has lead to opportunities coaching & cornering fighters as well – from amateurs to pros at the highest level. Outside of the gym Ian is a software developer and enjoys maintaining & racing classic sports cars.
Madelyn is the gym manager and the real big boss of Heavy Hitters. She can usually be found working the front desk or crawling around on the mats. She enjoys eating blueberries and practicing her kicks on her Dad.