February 15, 2021, Destin, Florida, USA
I am on the road, Krav Maga Winter tour. I have had the privilege of meeting many great martial arts experts. Many honored me by attending my seminars. Many of those in attendance were themselves martial arts instructors with many years experience, and it made me wonder how some ideas which have become part of my very being, were somehow new to them.
At some point in my career as a self-defense martial arts, Krav Maga instructor, I had an awakening, and this will seem silly and obvious in the written word: Knife are deadly and dangerous.
Yes, this is obvious and yet many/most martial arts knife defense techniques seem to ignore this truth. I wish to emphasize certain points here.
A man with a knife is your physical superior - I learned this from Richard Ryan. He is not a Krav Maga instructor but truth comes from many sources. He made this statement and I adopted it as a mantra. A man, or woman, with a blade is your physical superior. Allow me to clarify:
It does not matter how much training you have.
It does not matter how little training he has.
It does not matter what rank or belt you possess. It does not matter if you are a body builder or the Ninja champion. An individual with a bladed object is in a superior position to you. Accept that or face the dire consequences. Your disarms are little or no chance of success. Once you understand and accept this truth we can begin to work on a strategy of defense.
Your attacker is more experienced than you - Most martial artists or police officers will rarely face a real life knife encounter, and when they do they will be "out-gunned". Why?
The gang member whom you might face is far more experienced than you are. Yes, we train in the dojo, yes, we make it as real and as full-contact as we can, but we are still decent human beings. We are reluctant to kill. The gang member lives by the sword and knows he will die by the sword. This is his world. He is comfortable in his world, you are not, no matter how well trained you are.
He has been stabbing people since the age of 9. He already has quite a few kills under his belt, he will not hesitate. Imagine addressing a crowd for the first time. You have prepared your speech a thousand times, and yet when you face the crowd, most will freeze. And yet this crowd wants to hear you speak, and they are sitting quietly in their seats. They are not facing you with a knife. Do you understand?
You have trained in martial arts, wonderful, but are you truly ready to face the reality of a blade in the hands of an experienced killer with nothing to lose? Are you beginning to understand how inadequate most martial arts training yes? It took me decades to understand this. And now our training is a reflection of this harsh and bitter truth.
Our approach and our techniques are different from other Krav Maga associations. That's OK, I don't want being different, I have been different my entire life. In first grade some parent looked at me and said, "Who is that individual?"
That individual is me, and I am not afraid to stand alone, I am not afraid to be criticized or misunderstood.
So how is our training different? The only way to fully understand how is to come and train with us, but I will attempt an answer here. We begin by understanding the reality of the knife, this already changes everything. We eliminate all the false ego and macho bravado. We eliminate techniques that only work in the movies or in your fantasy dreams. We stick to basic, simple, Gross motor moves that you can do under pressure.
We say every technique must be: Easy to learn, easy to apply in diverse situations, easy to remember. Our techniques do not require strength, speed, or precision but rely on simple moves that are easy to remember and are instinctual to your body. We work with your body, not against it.
We do not aim for perfection but for survival. We limit ourselves to very few moves so that you can easily remember and use them under pressure.
The rest is up to you, come and learn.
Imagine these were real...can you?
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