Sunday, October 17, 2010

Principles of Krav Maga

Principles of Krav Maga

In Krav Maga, there are no hard-and-fast rules. It is not a sport and there is no competitive component. All the techniques focus on maximum efficiency in real-life conditions. Krav Maga generally assumes a no-quarter situation; the attacks and defenses are intended to inflict or divert the most pain possible on the opponent. Groin, eye, and other efficient attacks are emphasized, as are a variety of other fairly brutal attacks.

The guiding principles for Krav Maga techniques are:
  • avoid injury
  • go from defending to attacking as quickly as possible
  • use the body’s natural reflexes
  • strike at any vulnerable point
  • use any tool or object nearby

The basic idea is to first deal with the immediate threat (e.g. hands around one’s neck), prevent the attacker from re-attacking, then neutralize the opponent, proceeding through all the steps in a very straightforward manner. The emphasis is put on taking the initiative from the attacker as soon as possible.

A variant of Krav Maga, called “Haganah” (Hebrew: defense), claims to be not only a martial art, but a method for enabling someone at a disadvantage to overpower a larger attacking adversary. The system’s main goal is to have the combatant enter a “point of reference”. This point is a lock/grab around the neck and back of the opponent. Because of this “point”, the combatant is focused and already has a plan instead of relying on fancy maneouvers that take time to apply, and are difficult to learn. Simple well-placed counterstrikes are applied to defeat the adversary. In addition to hand-to-hand combat and ground-fighting, the system applies defenses against knives, guns, and multiple weapons and attackers.

Techniques that Haganah covers include defense against punches and kicks, escapes and releases from chokes, bear hugs, firearms, grenades, and multiple attackers. It also covers various hand-to-hand combat techniques such as multiple types of arm blows, and different types of low kicks to the legs, executed with or without shoes. There are some ground survival techniques including combat-neutralizing grappling techniques, pinching, tendon and muscle tearing, and for specialized or advanced trained, tactical knife fighting, combat shooting and counter-terrorist strategies and techniques

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