Krav Maga Pioneers
By Moshe Katz,
CEO Israeli Krav International

Israel loves pioneers. When we refer to the "Generation of the Pioneers" we mean those who came in the early years, cleared the swamps, built the first towns, planted the trees.

The pioneers sat around campfires at night and sang pioneer songs. There was always the cool guy with the accordion.

We admire them and long for the purity and innocence of the generation of the Pioneers.

Some long for the old days, and say...oh I wish I lived in those days, those were the days!

But we do not have to go back so far, there are also pioneers today. There are young people who settle areas that no one else is willing to settle, they are referred to as "Noar HaGevaoth", the "Youth of the Hills".

But there are those who dislike modern day pioneers, they only revere those who came before. They are nostalgic for the old days. They feel that the pioneering work is done, it is in the past, those glory days are gone. Pioneers can only be found in black and white photos.

What they do not realize is that pioneering does not require virgin land. A true pioneer can be found at any time, in any place. While others are saying there is nothing more that can be done the modern day pioneers are busy making revolutionary changes.

Some today admire the pioneers of Krav Maga, although most do not even know the true history of Krav Maga and the names of the real pioneers.

The point is that Krav Maga pioneering is still taking place, here and now. Looking back, the early days may seem dramatic, but only in hindsight. Our needs change, circumstances change and those with insight are still making innovative changes.

We do not follow a curriculum from the 1950's. Leave that for the history books.

An early form of Krav Maga, known then as Kapap, practiced in the 1950's.

We still need pioneers, here and now. Without pioneers things stagnate. Benjamin Franklin was a pioneer in electricity. Alexander Graham Bell was a pioneer with the telephone, but where would we be if we stopped there? Where would we be without our modern day pioneers and innovators?

I can tell you. We would be using very primitive light bulbs and telephones. And the teenagers would be lost without their "smarter than we are phones".

In precisely the same way we need Krav Maga pioneers. What was taught a few years ago is out of date. In Israel we do not allow ourselves to be caught behind. In 1973 we were a different army and a different air force than in 1967. Things change. Everything changes.

From 1967 to 1973 the entire nature of the Israeli air force was transformed. From one war to the next tanks are upgraded, all sorts of weapons are changed. New developments are constantly taking place. Why should Krav Maga be the one area where nothing ever changes?

Why should Krav Maga be the only area not subject to critical evaluation?

Tradition has no place in such matters, all that matters is saving lives. Using the air force doctrine of the 1960s in 1973 was a huge mistake. Old ways of thinking must give way to new reality. Change is a given. And so it must be in Krav Maga as well.

In IKI we apply the doctrine of change, and the lessons of the Israel Defense Forces, in our method of training.

We are never content.

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