“The most realistic self defence system in the UK today”
The Krav maga principles laid out in part 2 clearly shows that as a defensive system, Krav Maga is designed to manage the psychological and physiological stresses of combat. This is what I meant when I said Krav Maga is a highly effective defensive system by design.
Most martial arts tend to be more focussed on form and technique than real world effectiveness. They often have a rigid approach to training which rarely considers the acquisition of the psychological skills required to deal effectively with a real violent confrontation.
This is because they do not tend to focus on reality-based exercises and stress inoculation training meaning there is little to no integration of physical and psychological skills.
It is perfectly acceptable to attain skills in this way, especially if your goal is to master form and technique, but do not expect to be able to use them effectively in a street fight.
This is because, as Dr Asken outlined in his definition of mental toughness; without the psychological skills that allow the effective utilisation of the physical skills learned in training, in all likelihood you will not be able to use them when you most need to.
This is one of the main reasons that John Giduck stated in 2008, that many black belts are “wiped out by street punks in alleyways” because despite their technical proficiency, they do not have the mental mindset or toughness to succeed because their training does not focus on this vital component.
Even the more effective combat-based martial arts, and there are many, tend to be sports orientated which means they are governed by rules. These rules can be debilitating in a real conflict situation because scientific research has shown that when actually confronted with a real-life situation then we react according to our training.
Which means that we apply the rules we have trained and competed under e.g. no gouging, no biting, no full contact striking etc. This is not an effective strategy when dealing with a real-life situation because according to Lt Col Grossman in his book: On Combat: The Psychology and Physiology of Deadly Conflict in War and in Peace:
Whatever is Drilled in During Training Comes Out the Other End in Combat—No More, No Less. We can teach warriors to perform a specific action required for survival without conscious thought but, if we are not careful, we can also teach them to do the wrong thing. Some trainers call these “bad muscle memory” or “training scars.” They are “scar tissue” in the midbrain that is counterproductive to survival.
To be truly effective then, a solid self-defence system should not be governed by such constraints because they are likely to replicated under pressure testing. Krav Maga is not governed by any such limitations, the whole system is focussed on averting danger and doing what needs to be done, rather than fighting to a set of competition rules.
Obviously, Krav training sessions are not a free for all but the training emphasis and mindset is always on survival rather than competition, which gives a Kravist an edge in a real-life situation.
The bottom line is, Krav Maga has been adopted by many military and police forces around the world because it is so effective; it is so effective because it combines physiological and psychological skills together in training to create the mental strength and winning mindset required to win in a real life violent encounter. It’s a State of Mind!