KRAV MAGA & EGOS

“Martial Arts and self defense are tricky, because for most practitioners wether they work or not will never really matter. It will never be tested. They can learn and believe any foolishness they want. Then, occasionaly, it will matter very much to an isolated individual. The stakes are high.” SGT Rory Miller

If you search “Krav Maga” on the internet one of the top (paid for) results that comes through is a system who’s slogan is “Fear No Man.” If there is one point that these blogs has gotten across I hope that it is you had better fear man. This Fear No Man system may be legit and there may be some good things that I could get out of it but I’ll never know. I wouldn’t try it if they paid me! Anyone who teaches others to be safe and makes claims like “you will fear no man,” “how to defeat multi-attackers easily” and “easily win all fights…even if they have a knife or handgun” is, in my humble opinion, BS that will get people hurt. It shows me that the founder has never studied, and is clueless about, real world violence.

I get many surprised responses and unbelieving looks when I write and say the things about Krav Maga that I do. Look back at the past blogs and you will read “Run from a knife, those things are scary,” “Run from multi-attackers, it’s hard enough blocking one person’s punches and I don’t have enough appendages nor am I quick enough to block multi-attackers,” “Don’t go to stupid places with stupid people to do stupid things,” “Any untrained idiot with a blade can kill ya,” “The effects of stress and adrenalin will make you much less effective on the street than you are in the gym,” “You will be hurt and have to fight that way,” “I carry a knife and, when allowed by law, a handgun even though I am an “expert” at Krav Maga,” “We teach crappy answers for handgun defenses. You are in a world of crap and only have crappy answers of which our defense is at the top. The only good answer is don’t be there with a gun pointed at you,” “a slightly trained person with a weapon will beat an unarmed, highly trained expert more often than not” …etc., etc.

There is so much bluster, ego and BS in self defense and martial arts. I guess as I get older (much older) I am turning zen-like in my thoughts on self defense and violence. I realize that it is best to learn self protection over self defense. We truly teach 1) don’t be there in the first place, 2) run, 3) pick up an object to whack an attacker and then as a last resort, 4) krav techniques. That doesn’t sound a lot like anything else being taught, does it? Anyone who is just teaching techniques and hasn’t studied real world violence and who doesn’t put the techniques under stress, exhaustion, the handicap of having only one arm to use, a second attacker always being around, etc. is teaching people to defend in a gym (to prove how great the system is) and not preparing them for real world violent encounters.

The head honchos of most systems, for some reason, have to come off as unbeatable, super bad asses. Some of them are but I think they would be that no matter what system they are touting. They are tough as nails, strong and quick people. The problem is, they may be unbeatable but how does that translate to their five foot nothing, one hundred pound female student? I am the head instructor for the USKMA but I’ve never claimed to be a bad ass. I believe that most of the instructors I have trained, and several of my students, can take me in a fight! This makes me happy because I don’t claim to be a tough guy, I claim to be a very good teacher of a defense system that will make people safer.

If you are teaching self defense read books like STRONG ON DEFENSE by SGT Sanford Strong, MEDITATIONS ON VIOLENCE by SGT Rory Miller and THE GIFT OF FEAR by Gavin DeBecker. They are eye openers. BE SAFE!

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4 Comments

  1. Mark, Your students should be proud to have a mentor such as yourself! I have been involved in law enforcement for many years and can honestly say that I have seen all sorts of mayhem created by man. I’ve seen people’s faces caved in, cut up and demolished by other people. I recently worked a case where a Special Forces Soldier (Trained to kill) lost his life while on leave in my fair city. One punch was all it took. Lights out before he hit the ground and the fall crushed his skull and killed him). His opponent had zero training and wasn’t anything to brag about physically. My classes are full of everyday folks that are not participating with high illusions of taking on the french army. They are there for some insight on learning how not to be complacent knuckleheads and to learn about situational awareness. I too try to get them to understand that the best defense is to stay away from those places where trouble brews and that nothing good ever happens after ten p.m. Thanks for all you do and for the excellent words of wisdom! Nick

    • Thanks for the kind words. As i get old and lose all ego i think i am getting smarter. The story you told about the soldier says it all. It doesn’t take much and we can’t see everything coming! Thanks again.

  2. Thank you for this! I left a KM school because of egos and some really unrealistic views on violence that were espoused there… reading this makes me want to train with you.

  3. Thanks for this! I left a KM school for selling dangerous fantasies about violence. This is a breath of fresh air.

    If you can contact me about NY state USKMA schools, that would be great.


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