Krav Maga In Focus

Imi

There are many, many close quarters combat videos on the Internet and most are not worth watching. The closest I have seen to what I was taught was one documentary on the French Legion. Following that one video, the system that consistently comes closest to what we do is Krav Maga, the Israeli military hand-to-hand combat system.

Krav Maga was developed in Hungary and Czechoslovakia in the 1930s by Imi Lichtenfeld who eventually became the Chief Instructor of Physical Fitness and Krav Maga at the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) School of Combat Fitness (visit Wiki for more on Krav Maga).

It is not hard to imagine why Krav Maga and Atemi-Jujitsu are similar. In his book “The Israeli Connection”, Benjamin Beit-Hallahmi notes that there were strong connections between the Israel Defence Force and South Africa Defence Force and especially when it came to military training. It was the IDF that help create the SADF Reconnaissance Commandos and Soke Ben Mängels was QCB instructor to these same Reconnaissance Commandos (Recce’s).

There are times when the techniques from Krav Maga are almost identical to those I was taught (and times when they are not). I am usually ambivalent about seeing them. I am usually torn between thinking “great stuff” and “how come they’re getting airtime and not us”. But envy is not attractive. And I have learnt that the best teachers are not always the most popular. Soke Ben and Shihan Thaya were never interested in the limelight.

In the next couple over posts I am going to look at some Krav Maga techniques aired on “The Human Weapon” and share my thoughts on each.

About the Author

Global Head of the International South African Institute of Unarmed Combat Owner of CR FRIESLAAR Intellectual Property Consultancy SASSETA and International Training Academy (ITA) accredited Advanced Handgun (pistol), Pump Action, Rifle and Carbine Instructor for Business purposes use, Range Officer, Firearms Instructor, Assessor

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