Sometimes you will hear Pradal Serey being called Bradahl Serey. This style of Kickboxing comes out of Cambodia. This Combat Sport style was originally used in Battle, but now Cambodia considers it one of their National Sports. Modern Rules have caused some of the moves they used to have changed a little bit. The main focus of this sport is to win a competition as it is a rule based sport. Similar to Muay Thai Boxing, this sport focuses in 4 major strikes which originate from the knees, elbows, fists and feet.
The clinch is also used as a way or tiring and fatiguing their opponent. Pradal Serey uses more stealth and and shifty fighting stances which differentiates them from most other forms of Southeast Asian Style Kickboxing forms. Elbows are also used more often than in a lot of other styles. The elbow has been responsible for more wins than any other strike used. Fighting has been going on within the Southeast Asia Region since ancient times. Eventually Combat Sports developed as a result of this.
The Khmers in the Angkor Era developed and used armed and unarmed martial arts styles. In fact there was a style that closely resembled Pradal Serey around the 10th Century. People think this could be the reason that the Khmers had such great success in Southeast Asia during that time period. Angkor also used an ancient form of this Combat Sport with other weapons as well as War Elephants to go to war against Champa from Cambodia and Siam from Thailand. Around the 10th century, they controlled most of Cambodia, as well as Laos, Thailand and Vietnam.
Because of this, Cambodia has had a huge impact on Lao as well as Thai Culture. The Khmer have a belief that Kickboxing in Southeast Asia started with the Mon Khmer. Many Europeans around the Colonial Period were not in favor of Pradal Serey because they considered it too brutal.