My son has taken karate for a few years but has been bored with it. He mentioned that he wished he could learn self-defense to deal with real life scenarios. I had seen an ad recently for something called Krav Maga (hebrew for “contact combat”). This is a non-competitive, multi-skill self-defense system developed in Europe that uses striking, wrestling and grappling techniques.
I met a family whose three boys take Krav Maga to learn self-defense, fitness and life-skills. Their Mom explained she didn’t want her kids to learn violence, but rather skills and experiences that will help them to learn how to be street smart and to prevent them from being victims.
The class they take motivates them to improve their overall level of fitness through games and circuit training routine which also improve aerobic endurance, strength, speed, agility and coordination.
She says before the class, her kids were always fighting. Now they show newfound respect, discipline, leadership and the ability to work together. Individually they are each better at goal setting, commitment and compassion.
Children who take Krav Maga classes learn the first rule is: “I don’t want to fight”.
It seems that many parents believe it helps their children learn to assess what is a real danger, for example, being threatened by a stranger or known adult and what is not truly a danger, for example their brother being a pain or a child who tries to bully them.
I am excited for my son to take a beginner Krav Maga class and hopefully it will lead to a life of discipline and the confidence to handle any situation that is in his path.
To read an article about Krav Mags, check out www.nytimes.com/2010/08/01/fashion/01krav.html.
Article By Nuria Almeida
Photo By maxim303