View Full Version : Israeli system of self-defense practical, not pretty

June 13, 2002, 11:30 AM
Copyright 2002 The Columbus Dispatch
The Columbus Dispatch

June 12, 2002 Wednesday, Home Final Edition


LENGTH: 1194 words

Israeli system of self-defense practical, not pretty

BYLINE: Kristy O'Hara, Dispatch Accent Reporter

Fists punch the air.

Legs snap toward the groin.

Elbows seek a vulnerable target.

"Harder! Put your whole body behind each move," the instructor commands.

High-powered fans do little to cool the 80-degree room, in which the white T-shirts are drenched with sweat. The punches become fiercer.




The grunting and groaning echo throughout the room.

"Time!" the instructor yells.

The chorus of panting slows as heart rates return to normal.

The students rush to their water bottles.

The scene at the Dublin Martial Arts center isn't that of a typical martial-arts class.

An Israeli form of self-defense called Krav Maga is quickly gaining in popularity thanks to the Jennifer Lopez film Enough .

"A lot of people saw that new movie and said: 'What is that? What did she learn?' " said Miranda Wallace, 27, of Columbus. "This is only my sixth class, but when I first started there were only eight people in my class. Now there are 25."

Krav Maga, a Hebrew term for "contact combat," is designed to fend off an attacker -- by any means necessary.

"We don't teach anyone to go kill, and we don't teach to go looking for trouble," said Mark Slane, a Krav Maga instructor and Dublin Martial Arts co-owner.

Imi Lichtenfeld, who was born in Czechoslovakia, developed the defense for the Israeli military in 1948.

Seeking a system easy enough that men and women ages 18 to 55 could learn, he based the techniques on childhood experiences with fascist thugs in his Jewish neighborhood.

Lichtenfeld adapted Krav Maga for everyday use in 1964.

After training under Lichtenfeld, Darren Levine transferred the system to the United States and in 1983 founded the Krav Maga Association of America.

"It's easy to learn, easy to remember, and you try to make it your natural body reaction," Slane said. "If you're in a chokehold, your hands are automatically going to go to your neck."

Krav Maga differs from other martial arts in that it lacks rules, uniforms and traditions.

"Nothing is off-limits," Slane said. "Many are used to doing tae kwon do, where there are uniforms and bowing. With Krav, we just wear shorts and shirts."

Powell resident Matt Zieg, who has studied tae kwon do and jujitsu, prefers Krav Maga.

"It's not very artistic. It's more quick, dirty, and get out," the 30-year-old said. "You're not learning flowing moves. You're learning how to defend yourself."

Many martial-arts black belts would lose a real fight because of the unstructured environment.

To simulate realistic conditions during training, Krav Maga instructors play loud music and dim the lights.

Dublin Martial Arts offers four levels of training, with varying degrees of speed and technique. Basic self-defense is contained in the first level.

Krav Maga is part workout, part confidence-builder, said Denise Balnoschan, a Dublin Martial Arts co-owner and instructor.

Students participate in grueling "spirit drills."

"Drills are meant to wear them out," Slane said, "to tell them they've got to keep fighting."

Jason Stegall, 26, of Columbus finds the training stimulating.

"Rather than getting pooped out, I can go 100 percent," he said. "I can't believe how much fun it is."

Columbus resident Jon Herman, who has taken classes for a year and a half, appreciates the motivation from instructors.

"When you've hit the wall in the middle of spirit drills, you've got an instructor pushing you," said Herman, 30. "You're within your comfort level, but you're always being pushed to the next level."

Thanks to the classes, he said, Herman has lost 15 pounds and developed more energy.

After taking classes for three months, Travis Petry, 20, of Reynoldsburg has a heightened awareness of his surroundings.

"I'm always thinking of situations in my head, like 'If someone came around this corner, what would I do?' " he said.

Most students want to learn how to defend themselves.

"A year ago I was attacked," Wallace said. "If I had learned some skills, the outcome would have been different."

Levine, who introduced the system in the United States, works as a district attorney in Los Angeles.

He frequently sees surveillance tapes in which victims curl up in a ball when attacked instead of defending themselves.

"You've got to attack, attack, attack, until you can get away," Balnoschan said.

Amy Weilbacher, 25, of Powell started taking the classes to feel more comfortable by herself.

"The best part is realizing you have more strength, no matter your size," the 5-foot-4 Weilbacher said. 'It's good to know if I'm in trouble I can protect myself or at least have a chance to protect myself."

Some women take the classes to feel more sure of themselves; some men do so for the same reason.

"I'm more confident. I know my physical limits and how to use my height," the 5-foot-5 Petry said. "They drill me with a taller guy, so I learned to use elbow strikes to the groin instead of trying to reach for the head."

Beginning classes focus on learning to punch correctly -- like boxers.

Students enjoy the punching drills for the stress relief, Balnoschan said.

"They like hitting the mitts and seeing themselves improve," she said. "They can take it (stress) out here and not take it home."

Zieg began taking classes in April, after hearing about Krav Maga from Israeli friends.

"It's a great stress reliever to throw someone down," Zieg said. "Taking out some aggression makes you feel better and relax."

Though not as structured as other martial arts, Krav Maga requires mastering techniques.

Weilbacher initially struggled with her elbow hits and kicks.

"It takes getting used to letting your body take control," she said.

Classes for beginners, offered twice a week, are coed.

"As a female, you can see the strength of a male," Weilbacher said. "And for a male, it's good to fight and protect yourself the right way."

As for the movie, Slane said, Lopez executes the moves -- particularly the choke defense -- correctly.

She plays a wife who turns the tables on her predatory husband.

The actress, who trained with Krav Maga expert Wade Allen, did most of her stunts during filming.

That the film has inspired more people to sign up for classes heartens Wallace, who hopes that interest doesn't wane after the appeal of the movie does.

"Hopefully it's not a fad," she said, "because it's serious -- and protecting yourself is a serious matter."

June 13, 2002, 11:37 AM
Copyright 2002 The Dallas Morning News

May 31, 2002, Friday SECOND EDITION


LENGTH: 756 words

HEADLINE: Go ahead, get mean. Get ugly. This is Krav Maga

SOURCE: Staff Writer


The first time a stranger followed financial adviser Janet Woods into a hotel bathroom, she had to depend on a security guard to get her out of the situation.

The second time it happened - she travels a lot - the assailant had her pinned to the wall. She looked him in the eye, suggested he let her go, and when he didn't, kneed him forcefully in an area in which men don't like to be hit.

The difference was the self-defense training she had taken between the two trips. "Most men don't think that a woman will go after him," she says. "I'm a single mom, and I have three kids. I basically did it to be able to protect myself and my kids."

What she had learned was a system called Krav Maga, in which no move is illegal.

Conceived by a man who escaped Europe at the time of the Holocaust, it's designed to take advantage of a person's instinctive skills during street fighting. Its very name (pronounced krav ma-GAH) is Hebrew for "close combat."

It's still used by the Israeli army, and it is featured in the new Jennifer Lopez movie, Enough.

Krav Maga has little in common with traditional martial arts such as karate or aikido, because the martial arts come with so much ceremony, says Jack Bolowskie, owner of Unlimited Success Martial Arts in Allen.

In traditional martial arts, "the defenses you learn may not be effective in the real world," Mr. Bolowskie says. "It doesn't give you the adrenaline rush of a real fight."

A recent Krav Maga workout even sounds different from a martial arts session. After a brief session of stretching and warming up, participants pair up and begin learning kicks and gouges to the groin and eyes.

Although they use pads to protect themselves, the kicks sound like the deep booms of a bass drum - a noise that warns that if the kick connects, its recipient will be very sorry.

"Hands up! Protect your eyes! Protect your head!" yells instructor Rod Carmichael.

Then, to simulate being attacked, all the partners are broken up. They have to mill around the room, looking down so they can't see their partners.

At a whistle from the trainer, they run and find their partners, then whale the heck out of them. This involves a lot of yelling, laughing and thumping.

After a few rounds, the crowd is sweaty and breathing hard. So it's time for the chokeholds. Real chokeholds.

"The better you choke, the better you help your partner," Mr. Carmichael says.

He tries a choke from behind on fellow trainer JoAnne Overby, and within about a second, she has pulled his hands away, turned, and then, pulling her punches, kneed him in the groin and punched him in the face.

Not exactly cricket, but useful.

The history of Krav Maga starts in the 1930s in Czechoslovakia with Imi Lichtenfeld, a boxer, wrestler and gymnast, according to the Krav Maga Association of America in Los Angeles. He had to contend with the growing anti-Semitism and violence in Europe.

"He soon discovered there was a big difference between tournament fighting and really fighting for your life," Mr. Bolowskie says.

He left Europe in 1940 and arrived in the Middle East, where he fought for an independent Israeli state. After Israel was formed, he began formalizing his fighting method to train the country's defense forces.

The method is designed to fit the profile of the Israeli army: easy to learn, effective for men and women of all ages, and easy to remember.

"It's a really big adrenalin rush," says Judith Nussenblatt, a flight attendant. "I think for women, the idea of kicking or hitting is so alien that once they get past that barrier, it's really fun."

And since Sept. 11, she is very aware of the need for flight attendants to have a way to defend themselves. In fact, a studio in Los Angeles is offering a course designed for flight attendants.

"You advance so quickly. It doesn't take years to be proficient," says Todd Alvarez, a pharmaceutical sales representative who has been learning Krav Maga for about a year and a half.

He learned about the classes when he was running nearby, he says. "It really struck me. Obviously, there's great benefit to it, and it's so much fun."

Part of the training is learning to adjust to the rush of adrenaline, as it would occur in a real fight, says Allen firefighter Joe Krais, who switched from traditional martial arts to this.

"I didn't enjoy the [martial arts] forms," he says. "It was like a fake fight."

For information on Krav Maga or to register for classes, call the studio at 972-390-7161.

Alabaster Jones
June 13, 2002, 06:04 PM
Krav Maga kicks as*. Seeing J Lo doing Krav Maga kicks even more as*. I'm going to watch that movie.

June 13, 2002, 07:18 PM
hah. So what happens after I take them to the ground and break their arm off with a arm bar? If I can get behind her a 21 year old girl won't be getting out of my choke hold. Think the largest indicator of how useless this system is how arrogent if makes people: "You advance so quickly. It doesn't take years to be proficient," says Todd Alvarez, a pharmaceutical sales representative who has been learning Krav Maga for about a year and a half. Yep, a lot of people who before hand would have just run away are now going to have the -CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED- kicked out of them.

Don Gwinn
June 13, 2002, 11:29 PM
Yup. Which, to me, sounds like a bunch of other systems you could name.

Karate--"Well, TKD is sports, and some of the other schools are really 'sport karate,' but we're street-oriented. We kick with our toes like you would with shoes on; they use the side of the foot 'cause they assume they'll be barefoot."
(Yes, a brown belt in Shorin Ryu told me that.)

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu? No, no arrogant people in there.

June 16, 2002, 05:16 AM
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu? No, no arrogant people in there.That's a good one. :)

I guess you can count me in that category!

There is way too much testesterone poisoning in martial arts - people actually begin to believe their own hype and advertising.


Double Eagle
June 16, 2002, 10:12 AM
I'm skeptical that all Krav Maga schools hold to the same high standards and use the same methods that earned it such a heavy duty reputation.

Krav Maga has got some slick marketeers in its ranks, but it seems to be splintering very very quickly into different camps.

Some celebrities like Shannon Elizabeth are practicing what seems to be a 'yuppy' version, which is still claiming to be the same as the original IDF system even though one of it's main characteristics is advertised as being 'weight loss'.

To be honest, if a martial art is gaining popularity wide across society these days, then this is almost certainly an indicator that it has been watered-down. Because I don't believe the average person will stick with a seriously dirty martial art, they'll bail out.

Andy Stanford
June 17, 2002, 08:10 AM
From what I've seen, "Krav Maga" as currently taught in the U.S. is NOT standardized, and the quality of instruction and practicality of the technques taught vary greatly from school to school.

That said, the odds of learning something that will actually work on the street are undoubtedly greater at any randomly selected "Krav Maga" program than with virtually any TKD McDojo.

Sad but true. Unless your "no holds barred" fighting allows the gouging of eyes, snapping of fingers, crushing of testicles, biting, improvised and purpose built weapons, etc. etc. there ARE rules that are not present in an actual confrontation.

June 18, 2002, 04:01 AM
I've talked to a few Israelis and Jews online who have trained both in Israel and in North America in Krav Maga, and trained in MMA in North America.

They unanimously state that the Krav Maga they have seen in the U.S. is nothing like what it is in Israel. The Israeli version is much more direct and simple, with a LOT more hardcore sparring. The people said that it looked more like a mix of boxing, wrestling, and "dirty" tactics for the unarmed section plus weapons work. Scenario drills like having to get past a certain number of people to a door were also used.

I think the U.S. version of Krav Maga for the most part has already fallen prey to the relentless hype machine and expansion craze that launched it in the U.S.. The guys I have talked to with far more experience in KM than I have believe that the McDojoification of Krav Maga in the U.S. has already begun, due to the ease with which someone can get themselves certified at some level to teach Krav Maga, right next to the cardio kickboxing class and TKD. There is also a decided emphasis among some Krav Maga organizations to make money, money, money, and martial arts, in that order. With the new trend towards combatives after 9/11, I expect certain Krav Maga folks to milk this for all it is worth, and it will probably be a pretty penny to a scared public.

They are probably some Krav Maga schools that teach some pretty good **** here in the U.S., but I think they will shortly be outnumbered greatly. Which is a shame, but the way the American martial arts system works.

June 18, 2002, 04:29 AM
Andy, where have you seen Krav Maga taught in the U.S.? I'd like to know, since I've been taking it for 2 years, and have trained at Several different Krav Maga schools in the U.S. as part of my travels.

I have never seen a Krav Maga technique vary from one school to another. The quality of instruction is always good.

The only differance I've seen in teaching techniques for Krav Maga, is the instructors personality on how they present thier material to the students and the format style they're used to teaching in. Thats about it.

As for Krav Maga not being Standardized in the U.S. you are very wrong about that, Krav Maga in the U.S. is governed by the Krav Maga World Wide, and the Krav Maga Association of America inc. Both orginazations have Strict Quality Control of any licensee out there teaching to maintain intergrety in Krav Maga.

Both Organizations are under Darren Levine the man who first brought Krav Maga to the U.S. in 1981. He was specifically given a Letter by the Founder of Krav Maga (Imi Liechnfield) authorizing him to be the only person entitiled to legally govern/administer Krav Maga in the U.S. This was done to prevent Krav Maga from turning into a Mc Dojo art, and preventing frauds,cults, and other entities from turning something great into a joke.

If you want more information please go to thier website www.kravmaga.com.

P.S. Krav Maga not only allows but highly encourages the use of the following: eye gouges,crushing of testicles,biting, improvised, and purpose built weapons in street fight.

To Double Eagle,

It depends what a person is looking for in Martial Arts whether they stay or not.

Some like Fighting, and stay. Others realize they are looking for forms, trophys, competion, and leave etc. Thats just the way it is.

As for "Hardcore", I've seen more than a few times that description can be interchanged with the word "Stupid"

I gotta go home and get sleep now.

June 18, 2002, 07:09 AM
Perhaps some of the differences are due to potential liability and excessive lawsuits here in the U.S. After poking around a few websites, it appears that you can become a certified instructor in a week (well, assuming you can hack it ;-).

That doesn't sound like much training to me, perhaps there are some pre-requisites that make it okay....

June 18, 2002, 03:07 PM
Well, I just know that I had to drop a karate class after I broke the instructor...

I suspect that the "I can actually fend for myself" is a valuable thing - temper that with "I know my limitations" and you've got a good combination.

June 19, 2002, 02:32 PM
I've done tae kwon do (yeah, yeah) and hapkido for five years and I just took my first Krav Maga class last weekend. I was impressed. More by the mentality they seem to be trying to instill, which isn't "I'm a bad ass" but "OK, I'm in a bad situation but I will not lose" than by the actual techniques. Also, the level of conditioning seemed to come as a shock to a lot of people.

I agree completely that there are some things that training can't really overcome, like size and the mentality of your aggressor but this seems like a step in the right direction. People have to approach any kind of hand-to-hand training the same way they would carrying a gun: It certainly isn't something that makes you invincible and if you can get out of there, do it.

June 19, 2002, 07:10 PM
There was a Jewish guy I trained with in Atlanta while studying with Bud Malstrom who had taken Krav Maga while in Israel. I was interested to hear all about it, but he made it sound like it wasn't worth even talking about much. We talked a lot more about firearms in Israel! :)

June 19, 2002, 09:45 PM
I wouldn't be suprised about that Spectre. One of the things ticked off Imi Liechenfeld (founder of Krav Maga) was sometimes he would go into a regular military unit training in Krav Maga, and they would be training in something else different entirely. This was part of the reason why "Krav Maga" in the U.S. is governed the way it is. To prevent that from happening here. It's also common to many other Martial Arts here too: Karate, BJJ, Muay Thai, Dan Zan Ryu Jujitsu, Kempo, Aikido, etc.

As a sidenote to this discussion:

I'm sure we all have seen a Dojo or two where they're supposedly teaching Muay Thai, and looks more like a Full Contact Aerobic Kickboxing (this was a friend of mine in the Central Valley's School). I'll think, I will actually post this topic as a new discussion entirely in the forum.

June 19, 2002, 10:13 PM
Gee.. I never needed anyone to teach me how to fight dirty, guess I was born gifted. :D

All you need is your imagination and the will to do what has to be done. Sounds like a bunch of folks are going to get rich telling people to gouge eyes, kick nuts, break fingers, pull ears, bite, etc, etc.

Fred Hansen
June 20, 2002, 02:32 AM
All you need is your imagination and the will to do what has to be done. Sounds like a bunch of folks are going to get rich telling people to gouge eyes, kick nuts, break fingers, pull ears, bite, etc, etc.Arrrggg! If that's all it takes to get rich, where the he** is my money? :D :D :D

matthew temkin
July 6, 2002, 10:30 PM
My experience with Krav Maga comes from my Swedish police friends, who were trained by Israeli instructors in a 3 month course back in 1997. Quite frankly, I was not too impressed. Some very good techniques, but too many to really use for real.
I recall thinking, while watching the video tapes they sent me, that the stuff taught in Israel had to be more effective. I trained with Col. Applegate for 7 years, and he told me that some of his WW2 Camp Ritchie instructors went to Palastine after the war and helped train the newly formed IDF.
Anyway, those same Swedish officers are going to israel in two weeks for some advanced KM training, so I'll be able to see what they learned when I visit there later this summer.

July 7, 2002, 12:15 AM

Likewise. I must've been born with the instinct to do the most damage possible to the best available target, and repeat as necessary under the rule "Do it to them before they do it to you."

"Fair fight" always seemed to be an oxymoron. If I'm in a fight, it's not gonna be "fair", whatever that's supposed to mean.

July 7, 2002, 12:37 AM
throat, eyes, ears, carotid arteries,solarplexis,break a finger off in
someones eye or throat, or use a nice sharp knife http://store.knifecenter.com/pgi-ProductSpec?CM75
plus I carrya SP-101 in .357, I won't go down easy!come from behind and you would have a knife in your gut.I'd break your fingers, I'd bite your wrist and take out tendons,I'd never give up till one of us where dead!:D

July 11, 2002, 06:24 PM
I'll be taking my first KM class this saturday, and I'll let y'all know what impression I get.

It's true that you'd have to be lacking in imagination to not gouge eyes and twist testicles in a real fight, but most people lose their imagination real fast when they get attacked for the first time. Plenty of people know the theory behind sighting a pistol, but without actual practice they'd do awful in a crisis situation.

I took several years of Kenpo and boxing(15 years ago), and was looking to get back into martial arts, but I never want to do another kata as long as I live. Kenpo did me a lot of good, though. I paid good money to learn how to poke eyes and kick balls the kenpo way, and eventually I was reasonably ok in a fight. Getting used to taking blows probably did me more good than anything, which is one reason KM looks promising to me. Looks like they harrass the hell out of students to train them to keep their focus. Bootcamp all over again :)

Also, it looks like they have strict control over who can claim to be teaching Krav Maga. I tried another dojo briefly 2-3 years ago that claimed they would teach BJJ as well as Kenpo, and it was all BS. Nobody owns terms like 'kung fu' and 'brazilian ju jirsu' though, so they can claim anything they want. Hopefully KM can avoid all that.

July 13, 2002, 04:58 PM
If I can get behind her a 21 year old girl won't be getting out of my choke hold.

Nope. No arrogance there.


July 14, 2002, 12:59 AM
From the cursory reading that i've done on Krav Maga (when i was researching what art would be most effective for myself), i was really let down with the techniques suggested if fighting an experienced grappler. I actually heard this question posed to a Krav Maga "expert"...his responce astounded me: "Don't get taken down if you can, and if you do try to gouch his eyes"...

I'm sorry, but thats not going to work against an experience grappler who has you in an armbar, even an unexperienced grappler would have no problem circumventing the "eye-gouch" technique.

It's certainly better than nothing, but it's no replacement for learning basic wrestling/Jiu-Jitsu techniques.

Don Gwinn
July 14, 2002, 11:01 AM
Sigh. Why must "TKD Mcdojo" in the same phrase? There are McDojos in a lot of other arts--I learned the other day that some karate schools teach what are called "musical katas" complete with Elvis outfits and gold metallic gis--and aluminum weapons. Such a thing had not occurred to me before. Sounded more like figure-skating than fighting, but that doesn't discredit karate.
There are also, it seems, plenty of good TKD dojos. I like mine a lot, and I'm not interested in a McDojo.

July 15, 2002, 10:05 PM
I belive thats Ernies Reyes Dojos - Don:)

July 19, 2002, 10:23 PM
I am 62--my wife three years younger--we went to our forst KM class 7/16 in Allen Tx.--Jack-the instructor-impressed me as competent and honest--I went for my wife's benefit--shortly after marriage I convinced her that she could defend herself with a pistol--we each have a chl in Texas--about a year ago I convinced her to try traveling with a dog for the extra protection-Holly is now a member of the family and carries a service dog classification that enables her to go ANYWHERE with my wife-she will give my wife- 2 to 3 seconds no matter how good the attacker is-I've seen her work a sleeve and know how tough she is---Petey pete-if I gouge your eye I will walk off with it in my hand-experienced or not---sideshow(appropriate)--if you walk up behind me with a choke hold-I'll end your career-my wife not young anymore-if she can get her hand in her purse will put 230 gr. slugs into your tummy till you let go--I don't need anybody to teach me how to win-Im scarred up and been there--even after the class I wasn't sure about it till my wife asked me on the way home-do you really think if i could kick a man in the crotch it would hurt him--we'll go back----this won't make my wife invincible against a delta force grade attack--but I hope it makes her aware that she has some new options--maybe aware of her surroundings--not continual level yellow--but aware in appropriate situations---

Don Gwinn
July 19, 2002, 10:53 PM
Dude, you realize of course that we're not here to issue challenges. On TFL, it's best not even to sound like that's what you're doing. I realize you probably didn't intend such, but it is always good to think of how your post will be perceived by others.

Don Gwinn
July 19, 2002, 10:58 PM
Madgrad, it must be more widespread than that. In fact, on www.karateforums.com the other day, a woman said that in her school, part of the brown belt test is to compose two musical katas. ???????
This had her worried, because she wasn't sure what weapons to use. I'd have had bigger questions than that.

July 20, 2002, 02:15 AM
It's pretty common in CA Don. That's why my school and the Krav Program are bursting at the seems.

We are one of the few that in the state that is focused on the pure self defense aspects of martial arts (including our Tae Kwon Do program).

What's really funny about it is that we've had people just walk out the door, because we are not a musical Kata, 2,000,000 trophy oriented school, or a quasi religous cult either.

It's just really scary about some peoples idea of martial arts is nowadays.

July 20, 2002, 10:06 AM
Petey pete-if I gouge your eye I will walk off with it in my hand-experienced or not--if you walk up behind me with a choke hold-I'll end your career

LOL...If your so confident, go to any of the Gracie or Machado schools in Texas and see what happens. All the Krav Maga and eye gouching in the world won't help you. Quit drinking OldWino, it makes you belligerent.

July 20, 2002, 06:22 PM
Forgive me--I was seeking information on something called Krav Maga--I stumbled on this thread quite by accident--I submitted a post quite without thinking it thru--let me rephrase--I have seen eye-gouging techniques executed with some success--I have known some 21 year old ladys that were pretty fair operators--my weapon of choice ain't a thumbnail-but if it's all thats left--------the one lesson I took and observed was effective enough that I'll go back and spend some bucks to observe some more--as an aside I asked one of his assistants to demonstrate his reaction to someone with a pistol and his technique was very good--I'm convinced sometimes a teacher is best evaluated by watching his students--peace

July 21, 2002, 02:34 AM
I've been taking Krav Maga classes for a week now. I am fairly impressed with it so far. In the beginners classes that I take they seem to value quick reaction and aggression more than technique, which I guess has it's good and bad points. I'm under the impression that 2nd level training refines individual techniques a lot, 1st level they would rather see you do anything than stand there doing nothing and get pummeled. I find that I have to un-learn fragments of kenpo that managed to become reflex years ago.

It's pretty grueling training, for someone like me who is woefully out of shape for this sort of thing. A couple of months of this and I'll be in exponentialy better condition. Those 8oz gloves get heavy

July 25, 2002, 04:05 PM
I used to run track, and I think that with some Tae Bo, I would be undefeatable. I can outrun anyone :D

Seriously, I made my boys choose between Judo and TKD. They chose TKD, probably for no reason other than chance. It has done wonders for their coordination, their confidence, and while they are still very passive, they aren't pushovers. Probably best of all, it has instilled a sense of accomplishment and kept their interest.

I'd say a lot of elitism as is shown on these threads is exactly what pushes people into the McDojo organizations.