October 7, 2015
Years ago I was teaching a basic Krav Maga seminar. We covered a great deal that seminar but we did not cover knife attacks. Only so much you can do in one seminar. As I was leaving someone said, "Hey, can you show me how to defend against a knife attack?"
Now, for all the instructors out there, that was the punch line, and surely now you are laughing but also crying a little.
Knife attacks are deadly. I have been training in knife defense for more than thirty years and I hope I never have to face a real blade. Respect the blade, the knife, the machete, the ax, for they are all deadly and unpredictable. You must train.
You cannot learn how to defend against a knife attack by asking a quick question as the instructor is leaving the room and expect that a quick answer will help you. It is not, "Hey is there a cash machine around here".
Krav Maga is indeed designed to be a short cut. It is designed to take less time to gain a decent level than other, more traditional, martial arts, but it still takes time.
A short cut is a short cut but it is not immediate. There may be a short cut from Chicago to New York but it will still take time. This is not instant miso soup.
So today some guy posts a question on Facebook. There have been a few deadly knife attacks in Jerusalem recently and some people are showing signs of waking up. Some people are beginning to realize that at some point they may have to defend themselves.
But are they signing up for Krav Maga classes? No, they are posting questions on Facebook. So this person posts a question asking what is the best way to "ward off a knife attacker". The answers run from the ignorant to the absurd. The one thing most of them have in common is a complete and total lack of martial arts education. I.e. everyone feels free to offer advice, without actualy having any knowledge of the topic at hand.
When I begin to discuss Krav Maga training the questioner becomes insulted. He was not looking for Krav Maga training, he was simply looking for some easy tips to not get stabbed.
Wow. I am nearly speechless.
When I suggested Krav Maga training the person's reply was, "If a dear friend called you up and was feeling very sick, would you tell them to go to medical school?"
No, of course I would not, but I would tell them to call the doctor, not me!
I am not a doctor, I am not a nurse, or an EMT, for a medical emergency call. let me think...Emergency Medical Services, yes!
As I am not an expert on medicine I do not offer medical advice, even to a dear friend. The only advice I do offer is call a doctor. In fact, this happened recently. Sadly my friend was diagnosed with lung cancer. Would my medical advice have helped him?
A thought entered my head, I want to build a house. So post on Facebook; any one have any ideas how to make sure my house does not collapse? And someone might write in, Contact a building company. And my response - I am just looking for some advice.
Speechless. If I want to build a house, I must contact a builder, if I need medical advice I do not post on Facebook, I contact a doctor. And if you want to learn to defend against a man hell bent upon stabbing you to death - For God's sake go train in Krav Maga!!
Even a short cut takes time, even Krav Maga involves some effort and commitment.
There is no short cut home, there is no easy way out. Time to face the music.