Thursday, February 11, 2016

Our Kids' Program: What Does it Cover?

Our kids program follows the curriculum as set out by the International Krav Maga Federation (IKMF) in Tel Aviv.  It is a standardized high quality program for every country we teach kids.

The kids program is organized into 5 levels.  Kids(K)1 to Kid(K)5.   Overall, the programs are similar to the adult Practitioner (P)1 to P5.   Differences are based on age appropriateness   Young children do not practice knife defenses whereas adults do - for example.

All training develops awareness, safety, and encourages students to have fun while improving their overall fitness.

Structure of Each Level
The curriculum is divided into different "families", similar to the adult curriculum.  Each level builds upon the previous.

Stances: Students learn to protect when they are ready, caught by surprise, standing, sitting, on the ground... Stances are also important because they teach students to be ready so they are more prepared in the event of a physical attack.  "Hands up" also signals to an aggressor to stay away and can also attract the attention of others who might help.

Strikes and strike defenses: Using your arms and legs to protect yourself.  Krav Maga is different than competitive systems, for example, because Krav Maga includes strikes/defenses to all directions and distances.  Why?  In real life an aggressor (or aggressors) are not always standing directly in front of you.

Escaping holds: Wrist releases, escaping chokes, abduction prevention....  Kids learn to evade grabs but also learn how to use leverage and in more serious situations, strikes, to escape.

Protecting Against Falls: Falling on slippery surfaces(ice), being pushed - how to fall safely.  Level 1 teaches how to be safe when pushed against a wall.  Later levels teach falls to the ground.

Defending on the Ground:  Defending and escaping while being held on the ground.... There is light wrestling to teach kids how to use their bodies to not be pinned on the ground and to escape.

Multiple Aggressors: Tactics to avoid being surrounded, how to get distance and escape.  In Level 1 we teach this skills in an exercise we call the "Zombie Game."

Common Objects: Kids learn how to use everyday objects to protect themselves.  Level 1 focuses on shield like objects such as back packs.

These "families" as we call them establish a foundation that give kids the awareness and physical tools to be safe.  Each level builds upon the previous and we consistently review the fundamentals.

Feel free to contact us with any questions!


Christopher Gagne
Lead Instructor, International Krav Maga FederationToronto

Friday, February 5, 2016

Classes this weekend

This weekend we will be having our Saturday  regular class (1 to 2:30) at 11:45 to 1 instead.

Sunday classes are cancelled.

This is too accommodate our workshop offered by Expert 3 Megan Berkman throughout the weekend.

Feel free to contact me with any questions.

Christopher Gagne

Monday, January 4, 2016

"Attack the Attacker": When Aggression is Neccessary for your Survival.

Avoidance is the best self defense.  We also advocate using appropriate force.  For example, if someone grabs your wrist in a public place you might choose to perform a wrist release and tell him to stay away!  This is a soft (non striking) defense that is appropriate for the situation.  

There are many instances, however, where techniques must be performed very aggressively.  Punches, kicks, chokes, and knife attacks are just some of the situations that require you to be very aggressive -  to "attack to attacker".

For most of us, the idea of punching someone in the face, kicking in the groin, or biting, is abhorrent.  The alternative, however, is succumbing to his attack.   

Here are some scenarios, along with some brief explanations, of how aggression improves your chance of survival.

 Here, a woman is defending against a larger man trying to choke her.  Besides, performing a pluck with her left hand to release his hold, she is attacking his eyes to create space to better escape. Without her attack, he can quickly react by reestablishing he choke, hitting her, or both.
 Defending against a gun threat, this woman needs to redirect the gun, control the arm, and strike very aggressively.  Without this strike the assailant will more likely use his superior size to pull his arm away or hit her.  She makes sure he is preoccupied with something else - in this case, the pain inflicted by her elbow.
After being attack from behind a woman is kneeing her attacker to facilitate an escape. Without these strikes he can readily grab or strike her and regain control.

 IKMF director, Avi Moyal, is defending against a close range ice pick attack.  He blocks and strikes simultaneously to stun or disable the attacker.  Without, the strike the stabs would likely continue.
Confronted by a larger attacker, Global Instructor Megan Berkman attacks the assailants eyes.

Defending on the ground, particularly against someone larger requires skill and aggression.  Here, a woman is striking the attacker's face with a palm strike to create room to use legs to kick and escape.