Is Krav Maga Good For Self Defense

Krav Maga is a form of martial arts. It is considered as one of the best martial arts in the world to learn self-defense. It is often referred to as the art of staying alive. Krav Maga is an official lethal method of self-defense and survival system used by Israeli Defense Forces. Is Krav Maga good for self-defense? Yes, Krav Maga is one of the better martial art systems in the world for self-defense. This system is based on taking out an enemy or opponent quickly and efficiently.

What is Krav Maga?

Krav Maga is a Hebrew term, spelled as krɑːv məˈɡɑ, קְרַב מַגָּע or kʁav maˈɡa. The two words literally mean contact combat. The fighting system was developed for and by the Israel Defense Forces. All security forces in Israel have contributed to the development of this form of martial arts in the last seventy years.

Krav Maga combines techniques used in boxing, judo, aikido, karate, and wrestling. It is a realistic fight training program that is imperative for all personnel serving in the Israel Defense Forces.

Israel also has a civilian program. The nation actually recommends all the civilians to get trained and specialized in Krav Maga.

While those who are trained in Krav Maga learn various methods of self-defense, they also become a lethal weapon, as the training makes the practitioners extremely effective at dealing strikes, kicks, elbow, knees, locks or take-downs on attackers.

Krav Maga has been included in many training programs designed for law enforcement agencies and the armed forces of many countries around the world including the United States.

Krav Maga has attained unprecedented popularity in recent decades due to its portrayal in movies and television shows. The martial art discipline featured in Blood Diamond, Collateral and more recently Skyfall.

If anyone is planning to join the military or law enforcement, then training in Krav Maga is almost imperative as it can be the difference between life and death. Civilians or ordinary citizens should also consider learning Krav Maga. There are a plethora of benefits and some are beyond self-defense.

Is Krav Maga effective for self-defense?

Krav Maga is one of the most effective forms of self-defense in the world. Many experts consider it to be the most potent and effective form of self-defense.

Krav Maga combines defense and offense, which makes it deadlier or more powerful than other methods of self-defense. The martial art technique prioritizes neutralizing the threat. It is not just about avoiding an attacker or trying to endure the blows dealt by someone. The martial art is as much about giving it back punishment so you can escape the bad situation.

Krav Maga is a realistic form of self-defense. Many forms of martial arts have been diluted over the years due to some reason or the other and not all remain practically effective in a fight situation.

They may be good as exercise and for mobility, agility, and strength but they do not always have a phenomenal impact in the real world when one faces a threat. Krav Maga has one clear objective. It is to neutralize the attacker or the threat and this should be achieved as quickly as possible.

This form of martial art is not classified as some kind of sport. Rules do not apply and there is no regulatory body as much, although training centers offer certification.

Krav Maga aims for minimum injury to your body with maximum punishment to the attacker. Self-defense, protection, and preservation are as much the founding principles of the discipline as neutralizing the attacker and doing it fast.

Krav Maga does not complicate self-defense, unlike some other martial arts that have complex movements and patterns. There are many different moves in Krav Maga. They include strikes, kicks, blocks, locks, chokes, and takedowns. There are preset routines of course but all of them have been developed bearing in mind the real-world impact of such moves or techniques.

Krav Maga uses continuous motion. There is a kind of explosion of violence. One of the reasons why this is so effective as a method of self-defense is the violent outburst of blocks, holds, and strikes of the practitioner.

Attackers who are not aware of their victim being trained in this form of martial art are often taken aback, mostly by surprise and also by the brute force of the response. This method is based on simultaneous offense and defense.

No single move exists in isolation. One move that is meant to block an attacker is also a technique to facilitate a blow or strike while maintaining a hold posture that prevents the threat to get into a position to attack again.

Krav Maga explores the vulnerable parts of the human body and hence the impacts of a defender can be quite lethal for an attacker.

Many forms of martial art do not permit moves that are considered too brutal, such as a kick in the groin or eye gouging and striking the throat. These moves are not only accepted but actually encouraged in Krav Maga. The purpose is to neutralize the threat, using whatever means necessary. This includes using any and every object or weapon that is available nearby.

Is Krav Maga good for street fighting?

Krav Maga isn’t just good but great for street fighting. The martial art is extremely effective and efficient. It is rooted in the real world, completely adept at actual situations people are likely to face.

There is no illusory perception.

The discipline does not have fancy or moralistic expectations. It is strictly meant to train a person to survive in whatever scenario one finds oneself in. Krav Maga has actually evolved from street fighting.

Imi Lichtenfeld was the earliest contributor to the conceptualization of this form of martial art. Lichtenfeld was an Israeli-Hungarian martial artist who had extensive experience in street fighting.

He was a trained wrestler and boxer.

He spent a long time defending Jewish people at Bratislava in Czechoslovakia during the thirties against the fascist groups tormenting Europe. He migrated to Israel in the forties and developed what later came to be known as Krav Maga.

Krav Maga uses techniques derived from street fighting, wrestling, boxing, karate, judo and other forms of martial arts and defensive as well as offensive combat. Since there is no dependence on any specific type of weapon or tool, there is no expected perfect theatre or setting, all real potential surprises are factored in and a practitioner is also mentally or psychologically groomed to be lethal, Krav Maga is one of the most effective methods of street fighting.

Is Krav Maga a good workout?

Krav Maga is a wonderful workout. It is not possible to master the martial art unless you attain a healthy body mass index, a certain degree of control of all your muscles including those in the core, perfect posture and impeccable balance, fluidic agility and immense strength.

Regular training of this style of martial arts has a holistic effect on the entire body, also the mind.

Krav Maga boosts:

  • Awareness
  • Confidence
  • Self-esteem
  • Strength
  • Endurance
  • Agility

It also helps in day-to-day life as practitioners tend to have better form and posture. Krav Maga boosts blood circulation, strengthens the heart and improves heartbeat, enhances lung capacity and also improves breathing.

Can you learn Krav Maga at home by yourself?

You can learn Krav Maga at home but you will need some online-training and video tutorials to master the martial art. The three fundamentals of this method of self-defense are blocks, holds and striking.

There are three basic moves in Krav Maga. These are uppercut punch, stepping side kick and the palm strike.

The uppercut punch may look rather easy but if you can perfect it then you can neutralize a threat immediately and get away or strike another blow to destabilize the attacker. An uppercut punch involves using your fist to strike the attacker in the chin. You bend the knees a little and twist the hip to generate power from the core muscles and then enhance the brute force with a fast swing of the arm to hit the face of the attacker using as much strength as you can muster.

Stepping sidekick is an effective move when the attacker is beside you. This move can help you to get away and establish some distance between you and the attacker. Stepping side kick requires crossing your leg towards the attacker and then you shift your weight, twist the hips a little and kick the threat on the shin, knee or abdomen with your heel.

I used the sidekick in a tough man contest when I was in my twenties. The guy I was fighting was 30 pounds bigger than me and very good at boxing. He could not kick so in the second round I threw a sidekick and broke three of his ribs. We found out about the broken ribs when I came back the next day to watch my buddy who had advanced in the contest.

The guy I fought showed up and told us his ribs were killing him and he was thinking of going to the hospital. We had found out later when he had x-rays that 3 ribs were broken with my one kick. If you do these techniques the right way they work.

A palm strike uses the palm instead of the fist as in the case of an uppercut punch. The palm strike is better than the uppercut punch if you are hitting the skeletal parts of the human body. Aiming a palm strike at the neck or head can be very effective.

How long does it take to get good at Krav Maga?

This is a difficult question to answer. For some, 3 months can be more than sufficient. For many, it would take a year or more. It depends on your present state of health, athleticism and workout routine. Familiarity with any form of martial art, wrestling or boxing is helpful.

There are seven levels of expertise in Krav Maga, known as patches or belts. These are white, yellow, orange, green, blue, brown and black. You can become a practitioner in a few weeks, a graduate in a few months and an expert in a year or more.


Krav Maga is an excellent martial art for self-defense. It does not take long to pick up enough skills to defend yourself if attacked. Anyone can learn this system of self-defense. You can train at home using an online training course like what we offer or buying a DVD set. You may want to take the training online to see if you like it before trying a local gym. The cost to train online is far less expensive than going to a Krav Maga school.


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