People learn martial arts for a lot of different reasons; some for fitness, some for sport, some for pure enjoyment, but many learn them for self-defence. For the confidence that only years of training can bestow in a person. Martial arts make the body strong and the mind quick. Deadly quick. That’s why they are so readily taught for self-defence purposes.
People often argue the case for different martial arts being the best ones to learn for self-defence. Judo some will say for its combination of submission and standing throw techniques. Jiu-jitsu others will say as it hands down teaches you how to disable any attacker regardless of your own physical strength. Or you could go traditional and argue Karate is the best form of self-defence, it’s brutal and quick, how could it not be the answer to self-defence? However, I’m going to tell you the answer is Krav Maga, the self-defence martial art created by the Israeli Special Forces and made famous by its pure effectiveness.
Krav Maga is the ultimate in self-defence training. It is not pretty or glamorous like films portray martial arts to be; but by damn it’s effective. However one could argue that case for just about any martial art, if you’ve trained hard enough for long enough and you know your techniques properly you’ll be perfectly capable of using your martial art in a self-defence situation. However, that’s the problem – you have to have trained hard and long because your techniques have to be perfect. Krav Maga doesn’t require quite the same dedication to the art to ensure your protection. Though of course, it requires hard training and the longer you do it the more situations you’ll be equip to deal with and the more efficient you’ll be.
Self-defence is about protecting yourself, it seems obvious doesn’t it? But think about it, in what situations do you normally see a fight occur, or have to protect yourself? They tend to be late when no one else is around or at the pub, or out in town when someone has had a drink or two too many. Can you imagine performing a textbook ‘wax-on, wax-off’ karate kid block when you’ve had four pints, or when someone charges at you with a pool cue? Danger doesn’t wait for you to be sober, so self-defence needs to be realistic, it needs to be performable when you’re drunk, or other situations where people are not thinking straight- that’s the whole reason we do self-defence training, to ready ourselves for the out of the ordinary.
I wouldn’t recommend anyone trying to stand up to a mugger with a knife asking for your phone in broad day light. Your mobile is never worth your life, and more often than not, if you do what they say you’ll get away unharmed which is the most important thing. But when people are drunk it’s not so simple. Someone will try and cave your head in for getting served before them at some bars. So we need our self-defence training to be tailored around this idea.
But still, why Krav Maga?
Real life situations.
Now to justify my choice. Krav maga makes the best self-defence system as it’s thoughts are realistic. When I started training in Krav Maga for self-defence my instructor taught me to always remember four tenants;
- They’re better at fighting than you
- They’re stronger than you
- They’ve got a weapon and
- They’ve got mates coming
These are the ideas Civilian Krav Maga self-defence is formed around. It’s designed to teach you self-defence techniques that are simple, quick and effective so you disable your attacker and get away sharpish, and still do it after having a couple of drinks. Obviously fighting when intoxicated is never as smooth as that, but if our self-defence training is geared towards that, we’ll have the best possible chance at getting away unharmed.
There are many other excellent benefits to this sort of self-defence training, you can do it for two months, pick up a small array of techniques that have been properly drilled into you by the means of pressure tests and other effective training scenarios. Then if you stop training you’ll still remember those techniques, you won’t have a whole arsenal like a karate veteran but you will at least know something. And something is better than nothing, a slightly worse situation in a fight is always slightly better and so if you’re looking for something to learn for self-defence look no further than Krav Maga.
If your interested in seeing some Krav Maga demos do a youtube search for Roy Elghanayan, a true expert.
If you have any thoughts on other self-defence martial arts or want to voice your agreement with me, or simply want to chat, leave me a comment, send me a message on here, or tweet me; @colin1224
A Philosophy graduate with a passion for martial arts, travel and technology. Having done martial arts for over a decade ago I’m still just as obsessed as I was years ago. On Twitter @Colin1224