Once upon a time, about a month ago (I forget which post) there was a discussion re: footwork in Muay Thai. It was actually a tangent thread in another post, I forget the details.
Anyway, my point is that we were discussing the fact that Thai boxers often dont employ a whole heck of a lot of footwork. I explained why, but also pointed out that I teach my students to use footwork. I actually drill them on footwork/circling their opponent on a regular basis.
For those of you who are not aware, I teach Muay Thai at Lloyd Irvins Martial Arts Academy in Camp Springs, MD. The school teaches BJJ/Sambo/Judo, as well as Aerobics, Kickboxing, and Muay Thai. Many of my students cross train in the other classes.
In tonites class, Bret, one of my regular students (though a beginner) related his experience in one of our Vale Tudo classes.
Though he is neither an experienced Thai boxer nor an experienced grappler (well, hes a more experienced grappler than I am), he was really taking advantage of his fellow grapplers during Vale Tudo training due to the footwork drills that I teach in class.
He was able to continually circle his opponent, taking advantage of the openings being given to him. EXAMPLE: He would circle, occassionally switching direction. When his opponent would adjust his stance, he was able to step in with a punching combo while their feet were together. The Vale Tudo guys were apparantly not switching their stances smoothly, and I pound into my students heads the correct way to switch directions without leaving yourself vunerable by having your feet planted or too close together. Bret would just watch for their footwork mistakes and capitalize on them.