165 Years of Krav Maga Wisdom

By Brian Carmody

Krav Maga

When 10 people, amassing 165 years of similar experiences, all arrive at the same conclusions, it’s more than coincidence.

It’s wisdom.

Over the course of writing my blog, A Krav Maga Life, I have had the good fortune to interview 10 Krav Maga Leaders. All of them have earned the title “Master” in their life’s chosen pursuit. Each has earned multiple degrees of Black Belt. Each of them owns his or her own Krav Maga School. Each of them has taught hundreds of students.

I added up their time teaching Krav Maga and found that it totaled 165 years. Impressive, sure, but what struck me square between the eyes is that each of them learned the exact same 5 lessons over the years.

Here are those lessons, boiled down for you:

Krav Maga is a practical self-defense system

This is the most striking similarity I found. Every single one of these Krav Maga Masters started training in another martial art, and arrived at Krav Maga because they had finally found a style that they believed gave them the most practical self-defense combatives for “the street.”

This was the most emphatic point each of these leaders made. They were searching for something realistic and practical to protect them. Their students were looking for the same. When they found Krav Maga, each one said they had found their answer.

Krav Maga is a thought process

It’s more than kicking form, punching speed, or clinching technique. Krav Maga training classes in New York teach us to always be aware of our surroundings, to assess our situation, and notice potential danger before it finds us.

These Krav Maga Masters each believed that the stress drills they learned, and have continued to use with their students, are one of the biggest differentiators between Krav Maga’s effectiveness on the street and other martial arts that train for competition and points.

In Krav Maga NYC, there is a lot of practice fighting in the dark, or from the ground at a disadvantage, or with a weapon held against us. Routinely, we train to fight against multiple attackers. That’s the way it happens on the street, so that’s why we practice that reality in the safety of class.

Krav Maga is designed to be learned quickly

Each of my interviewees were drawn to Krav Maga because they could see how quickly they could teach their students to be competent at defending themselves in most situations in a short time.

Rather than using complex fine motor skills like other martial arts, Krav Maga was designed from the beginning to be simple and direct by using the body’s natural, gross motor skills.

There’s very little flourish in Krav Maga combatives. We learn to stop an attacker, neutralize them with a combined defense and counterattack, end the fight so that the attacker can’t continue, and get ourselves and our companions returned to safety. The most direct route from Point A to Point B is a straight line. Krav Maga New York is the fighting style that gets you there.

Krav Maga doesn’t hold onto history. Instead it allows improvements to replace less effective techniques

Krav Maga is fluid. When competent masters design a simpler, quicker, or easier technique for us to defend ourselves more effectively, then the less effective technique is replaced.

It’s not about ceremony or tradition. It’s about protection and safety.

Krav Maga boosts self-confidence, which all by itself reduces the chance you’ll be attacked

Here’s an analogy my Sensei uses. Imagine you are a zebra, running in a herd of zebras. You are the good guys.

Now imagine the hyenas and lions that are hunting the herd are the thugs, the bad guys who mug innocent people minding heir own business.

Who do the hyenas and lions attack? The strongest of the herd? The zebra who projects the most confidence? Of course not. We’ve all learned from nature documentaries that the predator attacks the weakest of the herd.

Krav Maga New York can change your life simply by boosting your confidence. When you repeatedly prove to yourself in numerous classes that you’ve learned the tools to defend yourself under stress, in the dark, and by surprise, you can’t help but project more confidence. Your workouts have conditioned you mentally and physically. You become stronger in every way.

The Wisdom of Masters

With so many points of contention in our everyday lives, so many shades of grey, it is comforting when we find some things on which people can agree.

These 5 lessons that each of the 10 Krav Maga Leaders I’ve interviewed have learned, are now ours for the taking. 165 years of experience condensed into a simple, direct, and quick message for you to implement today. Sound familiar? Sounds like A Krav Maga Life to me.


About Brian and A Krav Maga Life

Brian realized that the principles of Krav Maga can apply to the rest of our life as well. From this, a blog was born.

React to what life throws at you, but simultaneously act to regain control of your situation, whether that be mental, physical, or spiritual. That is the krav maga lifestyle. It’s a community of people dedicated to strengthening their mind, body, and soul because they want to make the most of the time they have on this planet.

Over the past year, A Krav Maga Life has become a social media engine for Krav Maga Schools, helping them spread the word about the fun and the value Krav Maga brings to our lives.

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