Israeli Krav Maga is the official self-defense system used by the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) and descends in its current form from Krav founder Imi Lichtenfeld’s original organization, the Israeli Krav Maga Association (IKMA).
While there are other Krav organizations, Israeli Krav is recognized by the Israeli government as the authority for krav maga, and Grandmaster Haim Gidon, the founder’s handpicked successor, supervises the training curriculum. In the United States David Kahn is the IKMA’s Chief Instructor, and he has written several instructional books on the Krav Maga.
Krav Maga is based on the principals of enhancing natural instincts and using the appropriate level of force for self-defense, and all types of people can learn its techniques and tactics in a relatively short period of time. Krav Maga means, “contact combat,” and the system relies on natural instincts, reflexes, awareness and mental conditioning.
According to the Israeli Krav Maga’s website, these are the, “Six Pillars of Krav Maga Training.”
- Simultaneous defense and attack
- Focus on vulnerable soft tissue
- Continuous Combat Movement (Retzev)
- A Building Block Learning Process
- Decisive Action
- Subduing Techniques
Krav’s philosophy is to never use more force than necessary but teaches its students to react with speed and economy of movement in order to end any confrontation as quickly as possible. In extremely threatening situations, kravists are taught to do whatever necessary – strikes to the groin, eye gouging, head butts, biting, choking, screaming into attackers ear – to protect themselves.
As opposed to the more well-known and popular martial arts, krav maga teaches its students to use any means necessary to protect themselves and constantly reinforces the reality that there are no rules in the street. Israeli Krav Maga doesn’t shy away from the aggressive and ruthless approach that’s needed to prepare people to do whatever it takes to survive a possible attack.
From IsraeliKrav.com, “Krav Maga is well known for its simplicity, instinctive nature, utility, use of weapons of opportunity, adaptability and proficiency.” In addition to teaching people of all ages and ability levels how to defend themselves, Krav Maga offers a fantastic way for people to improve their fitness level.