Sunday, January 19, 2014

A Hard Earned Fashion Accessory: Earning My Yellow Belt in Krav Maga

It's been a big weekend for my non-existent martial arts career: Shira and I earned our yellow belts (or level 1 in plain English) in Krav Maga! That's like passing Kindergarten for Ninjas.

It's been quite a wild ride going from knowing nothing to learning a whole smattering of punches, kicks, and other techniques. Choke me from the side? Yeah, I've got that covered. Put me in a headlock? Oh, I can defeat that. Of course, I'm just more humbled by how much more there is to learn, and more importantly, how hard all this is to execute under stress. So, if you plan to choke or headlock me, a little heads up, please?

Shira and I are so fortunate to have instructors who push us just enough to advance, yet not so far that we break (bruise, yes, break, no).

I really can't recommend Krav Maga enough. At NOVA MMA, the gym we attend, the classes are a nice mix of practical techniques, exercise, and for me comfort-zone busting drills. I regularly say "there's no way I can do that" and before I know it, I am (or at least trying!).

Thankfully, there are no photos from us taking our yellow belt test. But here's the after picture. We look tough, right?

Here's my top 10 takeaways of Krav:

  1. Keep your hands up
  2. Always face your attacker
  3. If you can't step out of the attack, step in
  4. Footwork, Footwork, Footwork
  5. Pivot
  6. Action is faster than reaction
  7. First, find the danger and neutralize it
  8. When possible, simultaneously defend and attack (and then, attack, attack, attack)
  9. Every attack should include at least one strike to the groin, if not many.
  10. Avoid a fight at all costs

What does all that mean? Take a few Krav classes and you'll know.

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