Here are my top 10 good reasons to train in Krav Maga – or any other martial art:
10. Learning a self defence skill is a genuinely useful thing to have. Statistically you ARE going to need it one day, maybe to defend yourself, or even to defend a loved one or a colleague. But even if you never needed to use it, its like owning a smoke alarm or a fire extinguisher – you don’t buy these things in the hope that one day your house burns down so you can use them. You buy them because you know that if you don’t have them when you need them you are going to be in trouble! A small investment of time or money can put you in a place so that when you need these things you have them!
People learn all sorts of skills, some people learn how to play an instrument, some spend hours on computer games, some people just like to watch the tv, some guys know the names of all the football teams and the players in them. Nothing wrong with any of that, you gotta do what makes you happy. Personally I like to learn how to choke people out, how to disarm weapons, how to wrestle and box. Then I like to train my body to become efficient in these movements. I get to have a laugh along the way and spend time with cool people and it keeps me fit, strong and motivated which for me is a win.
9. Stress relief. Now we know that cave men (and women) for millions of years would fight and hunt. Its pretty much in our DNA that we need to be doing this stuff. Check out the book Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers by Robert M. Sapolsky if you are interested in the science stuff behind this. You will be a happier and more balanced person by spending a couple of hours a week hitting stuff and trying to choke out your new found Krav buddies. For generation after generation, our ancestors would of been successful fighters and hunters! We still have this need (especially men) to be able to express ourselves physically, we get excited watching fights on tv or in films. Trust, I know things have changed now, we have occupations which aren’t dependent on our ability to survive but for 99% of your ancestral timeline, its only the last 1% of time that your bloodline can survive with modern roles such as fingernail technician or a management consultant. Previously to that we had to have some serious survival skills. Training in Krav Maga gives you a great middle ground where you can train, experience violence in a competitive, controlled and safe manner whilst being able to release aggression.
“Once you learn to remain calm under the stressful circumstances of a fight, you will have no trouble remaining calm under the stressful circumstances of life.” – Ryron Gracie
8. Banter. Its a fun night out! Everyone leaves buzzing, a month of training is cheaper than a night out in town too so its easy to justify, its a nice way to meet new people and unwind from a hard days work.
7. Being a badass. I like being a badass and I want to be at the top of the food chain! Investing in my own education has always been a priority, if I don’t ever need these skills its nice to know I have them, that alone brings a wealth of confidence.
6. Self Discovery. Training in Krav Maga or any combat sport is hugely challenging, you will need to come to terms with your own ego. You are going to get tapped out on the mats. You are going to take punches in sparring. Some martial arts exist where students are led to believe they won’t get hit. Well Muhammed Ali was the greatest mover of all time. Best footwork on the Planet and he still got hit so if Ali had to learn how to take a punch, so will you. Learning to repeatedly accept defeat and embrace it is character building!!
5. Embracing challenge. Nothing I have ever come across has been such a challenge, its physical, its technical, there is a strategy element to training for the street, a psychological element and although Krav Maga doesn’t have any competitions there is certainly a huge competitive element in training. Its easy to be a master of the punchbag – or even better the armchair – but when you are fighting a trained and skilled opponent you will be pushed both physically and mentally!
4. Making new friends (and punching them). Lets face it Krav Maga is a tough system, it attracts people who are mentally tough (or are training to be) and as such you get to meet some really cool people all from different walks of life but who have all come together to train. People who have recognised that there is a useful life skill that they need to know, people who train for the buzz, for the banter, for the rush. They say you become like the 5 people you spend the most time with, so maybe spending some time with strong, positive, confident, driven and motivated people is a really good time investment!
3. Fitness. Krav Maga is a great workout, boxing or wrestling for 3 – 5 minute rounds is an absolute beast of a workout. In Krav Maga you spend time learning how to fight, how to take a punch, how to defend against someone trying to glass you with a bottle or someone trying to stamp on your head. Of course during classes you will get a sweat on, you’ll experience DOMS and a lot of the time you’ll get a better, more interesting and certainly more useful cardio workout than you will ever get on a treadmill or running in a park. You will also get a higher level of motivation training in Krav Maga to do your extra training such as hitting the weights. In training you know that if you work a little harder outside of class it will make your next fight easier in class. That motivates me more to keep up than anything!
2. Training Krav Maga is a good manly hobby. One of the big causes of depression in males is the lack of doing anything physical or masculine. Fighting in a controlled environment for a couple of hours a week is a really solid hobby that promotes values like courage, strength, will and heart. For women, training in Krav Maga is hugely empowering as well as making you a solid badass.
Being a good role model. I love my kids more than anything and I want them to see me training. They don’t even think its odd that I go off some evenings to train, its normal to them. By the time they figure out that not all dads are badass, they will be doing it themselves. The old saying is true that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree and I want both of my kids to have the confidence and strength that this type of training gives you. Plus, I’m a huge realist, my eyes are open, I’m aware of the real world statistics of violence and frankly I want my kids to be equipped to handle whatever life throws at them.