Wednesday, November 29, 2017

7 traits of an effective Krav Maga practitioner

      Over the past 13 years, I have seen many Krav Maga students and instructor. Since this time I have seen various levels of progress. The ones who become the most proficient self-defense practitioners have the following traits:

1. Consistency. Three, two, even one session a week consistently over a long period of time seems to lead to the best results.  Some students come in, "gung ho" to get their next level, train 3 or more times a week then disappear for a time until the next test date. Their progress is relatively slow compared to the student who trains consistently week to week. 

2. Attention to Detail. There are no shortcuts. A flashy gun technique entertains the untrained eye but a well-trained expert will see the flaws that could be fatal in real life. The A practitioner attends to details that can determine the outcome of a self-defense situation.

3. Fundamentals. Students who work on the fundamentals- footwork, body defenses, striking, etc- progress and are able to better protect themselves. Again, no shortcuts. 

4. An Open Mind vs Memorization: Assaults are unpredictable so memorizing techniques limits your capacity to adapt.  The best practitioners learn to adapt to unpredictable/surprises by understanding Krav Maga principles.  
5. Open to Correction/Feedback. Most students want to know how to get better. Others, (happily this is rare), don't welcome criticism and don't progress near as quickly. 

6. Fitness.  You don't have to be an Olympian to train in Krav Maga but having a decent fitness level allows you to train consistently and helps to prevent injury.

7. Stress Training. Stress training reveals, among other things, how well you know how to protect yourself. It highlights your strengths and your weakness giving you an opportunity to further improve.

Friday, November 10, 2017

Surviving Assaults on the Ground: General Tips

       Many assaults end up on the ground.  You can fall, trips or slip.   An assailant might hit you, pushes or pulls you to the ground. Being on the ground is very dangerous. Here are some general tips for surviving assaults on the ground.

Avoid the ground (if possible). This is not easy as many assaults go to the ground.  Training needs to include prevention techniques such as sprawling.

Protect Your Vulnerable Parts. Chin into the chest, head off the ground, arms protecting head and ribs and legs between you and the attacker.

Keep Limbs Close. Don't give someone an opportunity to grab your limbs and put you in a lock or expose your vulnerable parts. When striking makes sure you recoil as fast as possible.

Fight Dirty, Look for vulnerable targets. Bite, pinch, gouge, scream, scratch.... whatever it takes to protect yourself. There are no rules, only your survival. 

Keep Legs Between You and the Attacker:  Having your strongest muscles between you and the attacker give you the best chance of defending yourself.  If the attacker gets around your legs, he has easier access to vulnerable areas such as your head, ribs etc...

Get Up!  Easier said than done ut being on the ground leaves you more vulnerable to concealed weapons, secondary attackers, the primary attacker and the ground itself!

Training must also include "troubleshooting", meaning exploring unexpected incomes.  We cannot forget that attackers will adapt of might have some training in wrestling, jujitsu or other excellent systems.