October 30, 2018, Israel
Today there was a terrible tragedy in Israel, and the worst part was that it was totally avoidable. Eight people, including six children, were killed in a car accident, their car went up in flames. The cause of the accident - talking on the cell phone.
As a public service I would like to share my thoughts on the topic of "Things that will get you killed", or "Stupid things that intelligent people do".
1. Talking, texting, watching Facebook on your cell phone while driving. This is beyond obvious but I have seen countless people doing all the above, yes, texting while driving, scrolling down Facebook. Yes, this can get you killed. If you are not dead already consider yourself lucky and blessed, but tomorrow is another day, there is still time to repent. The cell phone is probably the greatest killer of modern times. Nuff said!
2. The way you dress - If you are on the street and there is an active shooter, a terrorist, a fire, and you need to run, you want to be dressed appropriately. Make sure you can run in the clothing you are wearing. Heels too high? mini skirt too tight? flip flops or crocs? It could cost you your life. Yes, really.
3. Not paying attention - Situational Awareness is your most important tool of defense. No martial art, no amount of physical training can compensate for your being distracted. Day dreaming can be a problem, but again the most likely culprit is your damn cell phone, don't use it in an area where there is risk! Period.
4. Training in bad martial arts - Yes, sometimes no training is better than bad training. I have seen some terrible Krav Maga techniques. People think that by training with these instructors, some cool people with Israeli accents, they are sure to be safe. Think again.
I am constantly amazed at the poor and totally unrealistic training that I see; the old "360 defense", outdated gun techniques, instructors who are still teaching the same thing that was being taught 30 years ago, ridiculous knife disarms, (knife disarms is basically a contradiction in terms). I even saw a female Israeli Krav Maga instructor teaching a defense against a knife attack from behind; she actually taught to catch the knife hand with one hand (not kidding you), twist the arm and then side kick the terrorist in the stomach. This type of teacher is a public danger and should not be teaching.
And yet...these teachers are everywhere. Call it Krav Maga, speak with an Israeli accent and people buy it. How sad, how truly sad.
5. Mistaking physical fitness for Krav Maga - Nope, having big muscles may look nice but it has nothing to do with real self defense. I know many heroes, can't think of one of them who could compete in a body building contest. Fitness is great, but don't confuse it with self defense.
6. Taking unnecessary risks - You are visiting a foreign country? find out where to go, but more importantly find out where not to go. I am a Krav Maga instructor, I was just in Vienna, I was advised that as a Jew there are certain areas one should avoid. Why take risks? Best defense - not be there. Be wise stay alive.
7. Careless walking - Too many pedestrians get killed because they forgot the basic rules we learn as children; Look both ways before crossing, pay attention to the road, only cross the street where there is the special markings, stay clear off the road. Simple rules save lives.
8. Bad Friends - Another big killer is bad friends. You want to be cool? Well, you must avoid parties where people get killed, from drugs, drinking or fights. Be wise, stay alive, forget the stupid parties, forget friends who will endanger your life.
Krav Maga is more than physical. While good Krav Maga training is certainly vitally important there are many other issues that we must be aware off. They should be common sense, but like knife disarms that is a contradiction in terms.
Knife defense, simple and realistic. nothing fancy, nothing false.