September 18, 2018, Israel
I am not the greatest fighter in the world.
I am not an Olympic champion.
I do not have a room full of trophies.
And I suspect that most of the readers here fall into the same category as me.
With all due modesty I have achieved more than I had ever set out to do, I have gone further than my wildest dreams and expectations. I have achieved world wide recognition for my contributions to self defense and personal safety. I have gone into the Lions Den, the centers of former Soviet wrestling champions and I have taught their best. I have taught the tough guys, the bad ass, the marines, the bounty hunters, the SWAT team leaders, the presidential guards and everyone along those lines.
I have done so without being a tough guy and I never claim to be anything but what I am, an ordinary guy with limited physical talents. But as one rabbi said years ago I have done it dancing backwards and laughing the entire time, i.e. I did it my way.
And now I am going to explain to you how, and why our system is the best for you, the ordinary person. For our system, IKI Krav Maga, is geared towards the ordinary person.
If I were a natural born athlete, had I been the kind of person to whom everything in the sports area came easily, then my teachings would have little relevance to most people.
Perhaps a gifted athlete might be chosen during the Soviet era as a perfect candidate to win the gold. This child would be separated from the other children and given a special sports regime, a special education designed for the gifted and the elite athletes. This child would be groomed to be a champion. And I would not be chosen as the coach for this young athlete.
However, that is a very small and elite demographic. The sad thing is that many martial arts instructors and athletic coaches think this way while it is not relevant to most of us. We fall into a different demographic, my demographic is the average human being.
The beauty of this is that even the gifted athlete and the professional fighter or law enforcement officer, can equally gain from this approach. Simply put it is easier and you can take it as far as you want, each according to his own ability.
My usefulness to you is precisely because I am like most of you, average. I understand that we get older, I understand that we have other obligations in life and can't live in the dojo. But this lesson did not come to me at once, it took years.
For years I tried to force my students into unrealistic training modes. I would come home from Karate College and other training in the USA and I would implement a new program. However for people who showed up once or twice per week this proved unrealistic; few were achieving any serious ability. I achieved what I did through sheer stubborn determination and devotion but these qualities are rare.
Years ago a Goju ryu black belt said to me, "Moshe, you are one in a thousand", I was flattered. He quickly dismissed the compliment and explained that this was not meant as a compliment but rather as a warning.
"Moshe, you are expecting all your students to work as hard as you do, to be as devoted as you are, but you are in 1 in a 1,000 as a student."
As the years wore on I saw the truth and the wisdom in his words, and my disappointed soon followed.
I changed my ways. Gradually I catered my teaching to more realistic expectations, to what the average person can achieve in the amount of time they have available. My demographic is you! the hard working family person, the college student, the full time employee, the capable but not superstar athlete, and...everyone who exceeds those abilities. My students have also included world champions from around the world, decorated police officers and war heroes. My approach is easy and direct, and suited for nearly everyone.
Our system is not only easy to learn and understand but highly effective. It has been proven by professionals and "ordinary" people all over the world. At every seminar tour I hear the stories; Bounty hunters using our techniques and getting away without being hurt, police officers, prison guards, security guards at shopping centers, moms out shopping, guys in pubs, doormen and "door women". It has proven itself.
Daily we face threats, I think it is time we do something about it. For if not now when? And tomorrow may be too late.
Join us in our campaign to make this world a safer place, for all of us.
If we can achieve this, so can you. Moshe Katz with Hal Herndon.
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