July, 2020, Israel
All martial art systems change. That is a fact. It is inevitable that each instructor will have a slightly different interpretation of a technique. That change will be passed on to a student and amplified. After a period of time they will decide to break off from the parent group and become their own independent association.
There are numerous different associations of Shotokan Karate, confuse them and you will get someone very upset. There are numerous different associations of Kyokushin Karate, one of them evolved into Oyama Karate and this too splintered into different associations.
Many associations will not permit the slightest deviation in a technique. It must be handed down like the Ten Commandments, from God to Moses to the Children of Israel, unalterable.
So how does IKI, Israeli Krav International work? What do we do to preserve the integrity of our system, allow for change, and allow for questioning by students?
First we create an environment of trust and respect. Trust your instructor, trust the system and allow yourself to learn a technique properly before challenging it. Give the technique, and yourself, time. When you reach a certain level of understanding, you have earned the right to ask questions. In fact all students at any level can asked questions, but please be respectful, do not assume the "technique does not work", ask if you have understood the technique correctly and present your challenge.
Here is the key: If you found something in the system that you think is lacking, if you found a technique or an approach that makes you doubt what we are doing, ASK US!
Let us a simple analogy; a child is talking to his friend in class. The teacher is disturbed by this behavior and stops the lesson, "Johnny, Do you want to share this message with the rest of the class?"
The embarrassed child responds, "No Mrs. Jones, it is not really important".
Well, if it is not really important perhaps it can wait until recess, if it is really important raise your hand and share your thoughts with the rest of us. We also want to be enlightened.
That is IKI.
If you are looking at a gun defense technique and it seems to be lacking, do not "tweak" it on your own and teach your students a different defense than the rest of IKI. And then when I come to do a seminar you will have to wink at your students as in... "Moshe goofed on this one, stick with the new and improved version that I taught you. "And now your students have to wonder: What is going on here? Why is our instructor contradicting the head of the system?
Like Johnny in class, if what you have to say is important, share it with the rest of us. Daily I receive questions from all over the world; new situations are presented, old techniques are questioned. That is fine. That is how we grow. If you have a doubt about a technique perhaps indeed there is a way to improve it, perhaps your question will spark a discussion that will lead to an improved technique, or one that is easier to learn. That is what our new Vimeo series is about, it was sparked by questions sent to us. You ask and we make a video response. That is how IKI works.
Some instructors will say: I want to be free to pick and choose techniques from many systems. Well, what can I tell you, that is not a proper way to learn and I cannot imagine a student who trusts a system that is a hodge podge of techniques picked up on youtube or some videos or something you saw on TV. Our system is a SYSTEM, It is a philosophy of education, one thread that runs through all the techniques. It is not a "greatest hits" of techniques from many different systems. That is rhyme and reason behind what we do. And if you have any doubts, write to me, you will always receive an answer. That is how we grow, together. That is the IKI way.
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