September 22, 2020

Krav Maga: Everything to Know (Pros and Cons)

If you are a fan of the martial arts, you would have heard the name of Krav Maga. Defined as an eclectic, modern, effective, and dynamic style of defending oneself, Krav Maga is a replete fighting system. The martial art has little to do with the size or age of the player.

Sounds unique in itself, isn’t it?

The martial art form, which is legally taught at many schools and institutions today happens to be a practical approach to defending. Some of the experienced players of the art form will tell you that it is highly intuitive.

This precedent mainly comes from the fact that a player must build his natural instincts to combat in this art. This is the only way he will be able to develop his skills in a quick and efficient manner. It is quite important since the player will come under attack in different scenarios and not from a single martial art form.

Krav Maga rests on the support of awareness and instinctive reflexes from the player.

History of Krav Maga

The origins of Krav Maga are traceable to one person – Imre Lichtenfeld. This man grew up to become the head Krav Maga at the IDF of the State of Israel in 1948. By this time, almost every form of martial arts had developed some or the other form of attacking techniques. This is what gave rise to the importance of self defense. Eventually, Krav Maga reached the ranks of the army where male and female soldiers received training in martial art.

No sooner than this, did the Israeli Krav Maga Association came into existence. As of today, Krav Maga is formally taught by experienced trainers all over the world. Krav Maga is essentially a collection of different fighting techniques which emerge from some of the simplest as well as some of the deadliest martial art forms all over the world.

Krav Maga lays emphasis on the use of aggression, an array of defensive techniques and making use of offensive manoeuvres.

Krav Maga practice

Basic Principles of Krav Maga

Today, since Krav Maga is mostly practised as a form of formal martial arts, there is a little aggressive confrontation between the players. One of the remarkable features of Krav Maga is that it promotes the use of swift and aggressive moves in situations, where the opponent is fierce. This is when a player is most likely to target some of the extremely vulnerable parts of the opponent’s body. It is possible for someone to inflict probably injury to the opponent in this process.

The training of a Krav Maga student happens in a manner where he is able to defend himself from a variety of attacks. A player must maintain absolute awareness of his surroundings when fighting with his opponent. This helps him in planning his future attacks and choose the escape routes. Krav Maga also permits a player to make use of different objects to hit the opponent.

Effectiveness and instinctive response from the player is the foundations of fighting techniques. By taking bits and parts of fighting techniques from a variety of other martial arts, Krav Maga combines together to form a strong opposition for the players in the field.

As per the common understanding, here are some of the fighting techniques that Krav Maga draws from other fighting forms:

  1. Use of strikes from karate and boxing
  2. Use of taking down techniques as per judo, aikido and wrestling sports
  3. Use of ground work as per Judo and wrestling
  4. Use of chokes to escape as per Judo, Aikido and Wrestling
  5. Use of defense with empty hands as per Aikido

Grading System in Krav Maga

Most of the formal training centres across the world today make use of the same ranking system as Judo.

A student starts with the white belt and then progresses through the yellow, orange, green, blue, brown and ultimately, the black belt.

Also, check comparison of Kali with Krav Maga

Should you Train in Krav Maga?

Before committing to learning any form of martial arts, you must ask yourself some vital questions.

What is the martial art all about?

Does it teach to attack or defend?         

What type of striking methods and techniques are used?

Learning a martial art depends on the reason behind learning it. Krav Maga is all about learning to defend yourself. The guiding philosophy behind Krav Maga is not to open an attack on the opponent. Instead, it focuses on defending oneself first and open an attack only when there is no rebound corner left in the fight.

Traditionally, the Krav Maga fight used to be way and means to protect against an attacker. Today, of course, it has transformed into something else. However, its essence of being a defense art form is apparent even today.

Pros of Learning Krav Maga

  1. Krav Maga is not limited to any particular type of person. No matter what age, size or strength you possess, you are completely fit to begin training. This is mainly because of the design of the martial art which makes it effective.
  2. Krav Maga is quite straightforward in its approach. The act of self defense always comes before learning how to attack.
  3. Krav Maga uses a combination of striking techniques from different martial arts. Basically, it trains you not only in one martial art but a combination of many others.
  4. Krav Maga is a healthier option for a learner. If the stats are to be believed, a person is more likely to have a heart attack from attacking that defending himself.
  5. Krav Maga is a resourceful way to get in shape.
  6. The martial art form does not demand years of practice and intense learning from a player. The techniques are easier to learn and apply.

Cons of Learning Krav Maga

  1. While it is easier to define the goals of the martial art form, it is difficult to implement it in practice.
  2. Since the focus is entirely based on defending the attack, a classroom training environment makes use of false weapons. Similarly, the attacks are also quite plain. They do not come close to mimic the actual use of a power attack or weapons.
  3. Many believe Krav Maga to be a role playing exercise. This is based on the claims that it does not prepare a player for an actual attack.
  4. Krav Maga does not follow any extensive form of practice, like sparring in boxing.
  5. Real life situation can be very different than the training session at Krav Maga.
  6. Players are made to defend themselves against selective attacks. In this sense, it lacks the focus of involving a variety of martial arts.
  7. Krav Maga is majorly a street fighting event and warfare against unpredictable circumstances.

The Conclusion

While Krav Maga suffers from a definite set of limitations, it also encourages a fighting spirit among players. In this sense, it remains an amazing way to learn how to defend yourself. It is a great option for someone who wants to pick up various fighting techniques and learn how to be able to defend themselves. 

Krav Maga is popular as a defense technique today. Thus, it is often also taught to children and students and schools at the early stages. 

Do you feel interested to try out Krav Maga?

Eugene Hardy

Eugene is a professional Muay Thai fighter, with several years of experience. Also, a black belt holder. He actively participates in tournaments and provides training to his students. Eugene started this blog to share his experiences with Martial Arts.

View all posts by Eugene Hardy →

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