" Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will. "
Mahatma Gandhi

 

Krav Maga is a hybrid Martial Art that is rooted in self-defence and combat.  It was developed for the Israeli Defence Forces and the Israeli Security Forces as a form of military hand-to-hand combat.  This fighting system combines techniques and principles from many popular striking and grappling Martial Arts.

 

Meaning
Close Combat
Founder
Imi Lichtenfeld
Country of Origin
Czech Republic
Primary Focus
Striking,Joint-locks,Takedowns,Throwing
Orientation
Self-defence
Type
External

Brief History

Imi Lichtenfeld was a seasoned athlete and Martial Artist who attained great success in Martial Arts and athletic competitions.  He played a pivotal role in protecting his community during anti-Semitic riots and unrest.  In this situation, he realised that self-defence combat was vastly different to combat sports, the later to which he had excelled.  This was the point at which Imi Lichtenfeld began refining his Martial Arts knowledge and adapting it for the brutalities of life-threatening confrontations.

Eventually, Lichtenfeld was forced to leave his home in Czechoslovakia and, after a few years of training several elite units in the soon to be Israeli Defence Force, he assumed the position of Chief Instructor in Physical Fitness and Krav Maga.  It was here that Lichtenfeld developed and refined his unique brand of self-defence which was rooted in the scientific principles of the human body.

In addition, to focusing on self-defence principles and human body mechanics, integration with traditional Martial Arts such Aikido, Judo and Karate had also begun to take place.

self defence martial art 

 

Aspects

Krav Maga takes a holistic view of self-defence.  The following areas of self-defence feature heavily in Krav Maga training:

  • Mental – awareness of surroundings and understanding the psychology of confrontation
  • Physical – fighting defensive and offensive techniques to employ during an altercation
  • Environment – utilisation of objects in the surrounding environment as self-defence aids or weapons

 

krav maga

 

The Martial Art in Practice

Krav Maga is centred solely around self-defence.  It focuses on the mental, environmental, and physical aspects of self-defence.  This Martial Art incorporates the following types of techniques which have been modelled on other traditional Martial Arts:

  • Striking
  • Takedowns
  • Throws
  • Groundwork
  • Choking and Joint lock defence
  • Defence against weapons

 

These techniques are employed to end an altercation as quickly as possible and thus the efficiency and effectiveness of the technique is valued above all else.  This means that the technique must be:

  • appropriate for the opponent’s attack
  • simple and repeatable
  • applied to a vulnerable point on the opponent’s body

 

Over and above physical self-defence, Krav Maga teaches de-escalation strategies and the ability to anticipate confrontations before they arise.  Fighting or physical self-defence is thus taught to be the last resort when dealing with confrontation.

 

 

Concepts

  • Awareness and Vigilance – avoid confrontation where possible
  • Verbal de-escalation
  • Instinctive response under stress
  • Quick immobilisation of the opponent
  • Defend and Attack at the same time
  • Controlled Physical Aggression – the ability to instantly move from a passive state to an aggressive state whilst keeping one’s emotions intact. Physical aggression, in this case, is used to overcome exhaustion and push yourself beyond your physical limits.
  • Pre-emptive attacking – attack an assailant based on perceiving the assailant’s aggressive intent
  • Immediate Counterattacking – counterattacking as soon as possible.
  • Attacking vulnerable areas of the opponent’s body
  • Environment resources – using objects within the environment to defend and attack during a confrontation.

 

 

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