Tuesday, November 9, 2010

The 10-A s of Personal Safety for Women & Kids- Part I

Now, we outline the safety precautions against kidnapping, which can be adopted by a potential victim, especially a kid.
Many will sound so basic and obvious. But you will be surprised to know that they are routinely overlooked, by sheer apathy or pre-occupation. Or worse by being cynical.
1. AVOID
Avoid creating a situation which increases your risk exposure.
2. ACCESS
Prevent easy access.
  • Create as many obstacles between a threat and you; wherever you are.
  • At home it may mean locked windows and doors - which are 2 layered, so that you can see clearly who is outside and what he is carrying, without being accessible to him.
  • If habitually alone, get a good intruder alarm system installed.
  • Have a dog.
  • Even the simple act of locking the car door when travelling is critical. Many crimes started with the criminal just opening the car door and getting in, even before the victim can react.
3. ATTITUDE
Don’t behave like a soft target

  • As we see in TV nature programs, the predator always tries to pick the easiest prey. So, appearing as a soft target emboldens the criminal to zoom into you.
  • Remember the criminal is keen to get his job done with minimum fuss. If he feels you are going to resist and prolong the struggle, he will lose interest.
4. AWARE
Be Aware of your surroundings
  • If something is out of the routine, your antenna should go up.
    Like if you see a parked car with people inside on a lonely stretch, you better take a detour.
  • I often see youngsters engrossed in their mobile phones while walking. Or listening to their iPods oblivious to the world at large. They can be easily surprised, if targeted.  
  • Always walk facing the oncoming traffic. the chance s of you being surprised from behind are less.
5. ANTICIPATE
If you feel something is wrong, be prepared to Fight or Flee.
  • Don’t ignore your natural instincts.  If you feel something is wrong in a situation or a person, leave the place without delay.
  • By social conditioning, many victims think it will be appear rude if they leave abruptly or refuse to get involved in a conversation with a stranger.
  • Another major assumption is a criminal will look like a criminal. Actually many serial murderers, rapists or paedophiles look very decent and friendly.

Since I know a reader hates a long reading, i will take up the rest of the As in the next blog.
  • Meanwhile, please give your suggestions and add your inputs by leaving comments below.
  • Also use the share links on the right if you feel the information can be useful to somebody else too.
Coming up next week -
6.ASSERT
7.AGILE
8.ATTENTION
9.ACT
10.ARMED
.....................................................................
S.SREERAM
Co-ordinator / Instructor
Chennai Chapter, Krav Maga (IKMF) India
Mobile: 93400 06600
Email-  kravmaga.chennai@gmail.com
Chennai Group -  http://groups.google.co.in/group/kravmaga-chennai
www.kravmagachennai.com
...........................................................................

"So that one may walk in peace" ... Imi Lichtenfeld, Founder of KravMaga

KRAVMAGA BLOG -  http://kravmaga-chennai.blogspot.com/
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Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Safety procedures to prevent kidnapping - For Schools & Parents

Kidnap - nap (to seize) kid ( a child)
The child kidnapping crime has been around for time immemorial, for varied motives – Anger & frustration, Money, Political or Sex.
After the recent spate of kidnappings in TamilNadu, the police have announced certain guidelines - for Parents, School authorities and the Kids themselves. Very sane advice, no doubt.
To understand the issue at hand, we analyze it a bit more.
Kidnapping has some unique characteristics -
  • Mostly the victim is the softest target of all - Children
  • Kidnapping is generally NOT a crime committed in sudden burst of anger or impulse, because it needs elaborate planning of logistics.
  • That pre-supposes that the criminal should be reasonably familiar with the victim's universe.
  • In the case of kidnap for sexual assault, it’s different. The victim may be chosen on parameters like vulnerability and circumstances.
  • In kidnap crimes, the police are at a disadvantage, since the victim's family is generally reluctant to co-operate.
Taking up the preventive aspects first;
We can see it from 3 perspectives - The School, the Home & the Potential Victim 

Kidnap preventive measures by The School-
  • Dropping & Pickup of students to be monitored in person and if possible, as the Addl.CoP, Chennai suggested with CCTV cameras.
  • Identification tags can be provided to Drivers or whoever comes to pickup, which will be verified by school security
  • To devise a System to detect unannounced absence of a student to be red-flagged asap.
  • Conduct safety awareness programs to educate students & parents on preventive methods.
  • The school should have an escalation procedure in place, to prevent chaos and confusion during a crisis. This saves precious time.
  • Impart self-defence classes to the students, like KRAV-MAGA which does NOT depend on Strength or Fitness - useful for a small defendant against a bigger aggressor
Kidnap preventive measures by The Parent -
  • The rich should have secure procedures for recruitment and monitoring of staff - Drivers, domestic help etc.
  • This will include identification and address proofs, referrals and retaining photographs of staff.
  • In extreme cases, even a background check by a private detective agency can be done.
  • Security should be upped if there are reasonable grounds for caution, like a disgruntled sacked staff.
  • The child should be taught at the earliest to use the phone and tell the parents' names & address.
  • Any change in the behaviour or attitude of the child should be probed. This can be due to fear or risky habits.
  • Interaction with the school and be part of its safety programs.
  • The Child should be taught the safety protocols of dealing with strangers or recognizing deviant behaviour of known persons.
  • Keep an eye on the online activity of the child
  • Impart self-defence training for the child - preferably a system which is natural and intuitive like KRAV-MAGA
Meanwhile readers are asked to contribute more points. You can leave it as Comments below or write me an email. And please do SHARE this article for common good.

S.SREERAM
Co-ordinator / Instructor
Chennai Chapter, Krav Maga (IKMF) India
Mobile: 93400 06600
www.kravmagachennai.com
...........................................................................

"So that one may walk in peace" ... Imi Lichtenfeld, Founder of KravMaga
TWEET - @kravMagaSreeRam

Friday, October 1, 2010

4 Ds of stopping a violent confrontation



The prisons are filled with normal people like you and me. They landed in the prison just because they lost their sanity for a few seconds.
Frightening, isn’t it!  When you realise that everything built over a lifetime can be lost in a jiffy.

“Violence starts where civilization ends."
KravMaga system takes this dictum into cognizance and advocates physical violence only as last resort, when all civilized options are exhausted.

What are the triggers of Violence?
Volatile situations happen every day in bar rooms, board rooms and bed rooms. Wherever there is more than one individual, opinions may differ. Unfortunately and unexpectedly, sometimes these differences escalate to physical violence.

Aggression can be internally present.
A small minority do carry their aggression blatantly. They are by nature bullies or brought up in a social/domestic condition where violence is a pre-requisite for daily survival.

Aggression can be externally instigated.
But for the majority, the suicidal violence is escalated by external conditions - Stress due to overcrowding, fatigue caused by stiff deadlines and the ingrained psyche of an individual conditioned for survival in a hyper-competitive world.
These negative emotions are kept bottled up for social correctness. But they burst out violently on a minor provocation. 

Glorification of Violence
Most of the testosterone charged youngsters don’t realise the damage potential of violence. Because their sensitivity has been dulled for years, by the constant dose of self righteous violence - starting from the cartoons one saw a kid; the mass media has glorified violence.
When bones break, blood spills and one ends up waiting for hours in a police station or in a hospital corridor, one wakes up to the harsh reality of physical violence.
That brings us to the first D.

DENY - your Ego
Most of us are blind to our own faults. Especially in a conflict situation when passions are flying high, whatever objectivity one possesses evaporates in the heat.
So, instead of assessing the ways to resolve the conflict, we escalate it further by angry repartees. This escalation snow balls to an extent where tactically backing off becomes impossible, without losing face.  It becomes all about," I won’t budge from my position whatever happens." 
But, how does one temper the Ego? That brings us to the next D.

DELAY - the escalation
As they say Anger is temporary madness. Because the Adrenalin surge does crazy things to you physically and mentally.
Imagine your car is suddenly going out of control. What is the first instinctive action? Take the foot of the accelerator. You understand that all the braking and manoeuvring is possible only if the car is not going any faster.
Similarly, just stop reacting word to word and gesture to gesture. Be silent for a sometime if the other guy is ranting. Breathe deeply so that the shallow angry breathing is regulated. This should stop the urge to keep scoring verbal points.
This takes us to the next D.

DIFFUSE - the anger
Don’t show overt body language of aggression. Speak softly and firmly.
Avoid invading the personal space of the opponent, for two reasons. Because he will see it as a personal affront. Further if he starts punching or kicking you will be too close to defend.
FENCE
Watch the hotel bouncers handling an unreasonable guest. They put up both their hands in a classic posture called 'Fence', which even though looks as if he is pacifying, in actuality is a guard.

DIVERT - his aggression
Once the snowballing of the conflict is stemmed, the next priority is to channelize the aggression away from a confrontation.
The fact is, except a retarded few, nobody likes violence. But many aggressors continue a suicidal anger posture because they don’t know how to back off. Backing off is even more difficult when they are with friends and relatives. When you offer an option wherein he doesn't lose face, he is actually relieved.

To summarize – Deny, Delay, Diffuse & Divert.

As we love to say in KravMaga
“A good fighter knows how to get OUT of a Fight.
A smart fighter knows how NOT to get IN a Fight."

S.SREERAM
Co-ordinator / Instructor
Chennai Chapter, Krav Maga (IKMF) India
Mobile: 93400 06600
www.kravmagachennai.com
...........................................................................

"So that one may walk in peace" ... Imi Lichtenfeld, Founder of KravMaga
TWEET - @kravMagaSreeRam

Friday, September 24, 2010

Some common myths of street fighting smashed.


Myth 1 - Size matters
Size is a natural advantage since its intimidating. But the advantage of size in actual street fight is over-rated.
Natural reflex, aggression, nimbleness and hitting the vulnerable spots are the key in a emotionally intensive confrontation.
But, AVOID going on the ground grappling with a bigger guy, because he can dominate with superior mass.
Myth 2 - Technique matters 
Its highly improbable that a technique learnt inside a dojo can be applied with 100% effectiveness, in a sudden fight.  One will be under adrenalin infused stress because of the unpredictable and dynamic nature of an ugly confrontation.
Its the reflexive adaptability of the technique which will be most natural and least contrived.
Myth 3 - Cool head will prevail
3 things matter in street fight - Aggression, aggression and more aggression.
As combat tested military and police officers have observed “Combat is 90% Attitude & 10% Technique"
Myth 4 - "Everything happened SO suddenly!"
Things did NOT turn ugly suddenly. Its just that your antenna was not up and all the signals, of a situation becoming uglier, were ignored.
The concept of AOI (Ability, Opportunity, and Intent) has to be understood, especially if you are in a profession or lifestyle where exposure to violence is highly probable.
Another factor is the behaviour of the aggressor which indicates attack is imminent. Some of the common indicators are -
  • Facial expression (Knotted eyebrows, staring eyes, flared nostrils, pursed mouth)
  • Abusive language,
  • Reddish pallor if fair skinned or waxen grey if dark skinned
  • Invading your personal space
  • Unconsciously taking a stronger stance
  • Rolling up the shirt sleeve ( or macho gestures peculiar to the locality)
Thats why in KravMaga training, apart from techniques, lots of importance is given to sharpening the natural reflex, becoming aggressive, handling others' aggression and being spatially aware of the environment.
Remember the first rule of Krav-Maga?
NO RULES
.. since in the street there are NO rules  


S.SREERAM
Co-ordinator / Instructor
Chennai Chapter, Krav Maga (IKMF) India
Mobile: 93400 06600
www.kravmagachennai.com
...........................................................................

"So that one may walk in peace" ... Imi Lichtenfeld, Founder of KravMaga
TWEET - @kravMagaSreeRam

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Core Exercises - The simplest way for total fitness



When it comes to total lifetime fitness, core exercises are just about the best thing you can do for yourself. The results are immediate and long-lasting. Core exercises have profound benefits for both men and women, at all levels of training and experience.
Most core exercises do not require fitness equipment to be effective.
Here are some very simple exercises that you can do any time in the privacy of your own home. In order for them to be effective, you need to exercise at least three times a week, and after awhile, you should work your way up to five times a week.

The Top 10 Benefits of Core Exercises -
1. It's good for you!
Core exercises train your deep abdominal muscles - the main one is called the transversus abdominis. You can think of your transversus abdominis as your internal weight belt. It's a very deep muscle that surrounds your entire waist, supporting all your abdominal structures including your lower back.

2. Looking good.
Of course - this is why we exercise! Well, mostly why we exercise. :-) Core training flattens your abs better and faster than any other abdominal workout.
Due to lower back strength your posture improves visibly.

3. Core training is the missing piece of most exercise programs.
Most people do abdominal exercises as part of their regular routines. These are important, and yet abdominal exercises per se focus on the superficial abdominal muscles - primarily the rectus abdominis.
What's needed are exercises that specifically target the transversus abdominis (TVA) - your body's weight belt. This muscle is your deepest muscular layer and is most effectively trained using core routines.

4. Lower back stabilization.
A strong and healthy lower back requires a strong and healthy group of core muscles - the TVA, multifidus, erector spinae, longissimus thoracis, rectus abdominis, and internal and external obliques. A strong core provides weight-bearing support to the lower back, freeing your spinal vertebras, joints, and muscles to do what they were designed to do - move your body around in space.

5. Your body gets much smarter!
Core training provides remarkable unexpected benefits, including improved balance and coordination. Core training creates more and better links between your brain - specifically your cerebellum - and your body. The cerebellum is responsible for muscular coordination, balance, and positional awareness - proprioception - your body's awareness of its positioning in three-dimensional space. So core fitness means your brain is fit, too, and your body's own intelligence goes up very quickly.

6. Improved flexibility.
Another unexpected benefit of core fitness. Improved flexibility is the natural result of improved lower back stabilization. A strong group of core muscles takes weight-bearing pressure off your lower back, removing an ongoing, daily source of lower-back muscular stress and strain. These muscles and ligaments are freed-up to go through their entire ranges of motion, providing improved natural mobility and flexibility.

7. Improved respiration and lung capacity.
The TVA is directly connected to the diaphragm. When the core muscles are well-trained and working properly, your ability to breathe in fully and breathe out fully is greatly improved. More air means more oxygen - the performance of all your body systems is upgraded as a result. Pretty remarkable.

8. Reduced occurrence of lower back pain.
Most of us have had some kind of lower back trouble here and there. Most of these lower back problems result from bearing too much or too sudden weight in the lower back. A strong set of core muscles helps prevent or minimize such damage by providing more a efficient weight-bearing mechanism. Your back muscles and ligaments are not primarily designed to bear weight. Their primary function is to move your body around in three-dimensional space. A strong core allows for more normal spinal function and lower back problems are reduced.

9. Improved physical strength.
In the old days you'd carry around a weight belt when you worked out at the gym. You'd put on the weight belt when you were doing squats, deadlifts, or shoulder presses with a barbell. The belt provided stabilization and supported your lower back, allowing you to lift heavier weights and reduce the risk of injury. In those days people didn't know about core training. With core exercises, you strengthen your own internal weight belt. The TVA and other core muscles even do a better job than the old leather weight belts. They're a natural part of your body and know what they're supposed to do. All you need to do is keep these muscles fit and well-trained.

10. More fun with martial arts and any other physical activity
Basically, any sport that requires both aerobic performance and flexibility is improved with core training. Core exercises enhance your respiratory capacity and your balance, coordination, and flexibility. The result is upgraded athletic performance - you have more stamina and your sport-specific skills improve. Core training is literally a one-stop shop for fitness.

Start Today! Don't Delay!

Email – kravmaga.chennai@gmail.com
Facebook – Krav Maga Chennai
www.kravmagachennai.com
Mobile: 9340006600

Sunday, August 1, 2010

WHY SOME FREEZE IN A CRISIS AND HOW TO AVOID IT.

In a sudden confrontation, people often freeze. Even martial-art practitioners and military soldiers are not exempt from this comatose response.
First we will look at why this happens and later we will see how to train the body and mind to avoid this freeze.

WHAT HAPPENS DURING 'THE FIGHT OR FLIGHT' SITUATION
The technical term is Tachypsychia. In this neurological condition due to a sudden surge of adrenalin in the blood stream, the following happen -
• Heart beat can rise up to 300 bpm, resulting in high Blood pressure. That’s why many faint in a crisis.
Heavy breathing due to dilation of airway to lungs.
Limbs don’t move, as body prepares for defensive foetal posture.
• Dilated eye pupils, which produces visual exclusion known commonly as 'tunnel vision'. That’s why people lose peripheral vision.
• Auditory exclusion also happens. That’s why people in shock appear deaf and seem to be far away, in their own world.
• Epinephrine dump in the brain makes Time either speed up or slow down. That’s why many appear disoriented.
After the crisis people are drained out physically and mentally due to 'post-traumatic stress disorder'. Wait till the blood pressure returns to normal level and the blood stream flushes the adrenalin.

HOW TO TRAIN AND AVOID THIS FREEZE
Even the best trained will freeze if they are not taught to handle –
• Opponent's aggression
Unpredictability
Stress induced by Fear and Anxiety
In KravMaga training after the trainee is familiar with basic skills, a gradual escalation of physical and mental stress is introduced.

This training in handling stress achieves five results -
• The trainee' body and mind gets used to handle unpredictable aggression.
Muscle memory is enhanced where the body responds without intellectualising the predicament.
• Their tolerance threshold increases, giving them more clarity in a crisis.
They don’t unnecessarily over-react escalating a situation, which could have been diffused without violence.
• The fear of confrontation and injury is eliminated, enhancing motor skills.
• And most important, they understand how techniques which worked fine is a serene atmosphere fail in unpredictability. So their complacency is reduced and they don’t end up making an ass of themselves.

I often hear my students narrating their deft handling to diffuse ugly road rage situations, where earlier they used to be confused. I feel more satisfied than if they have they told me they thrashed 3 goons! I have taught sanity and not mindless violence.

Email – kravmaga.chennai@gmail.com
Facebook – Krav Maga Chennai

Sunday, June 13, 2010

VULNERABLE SPOTS – KEY TO END A STREET FIGHT ASAP

KRAV MAGA is a pragmatic and realistic fighting system. Find out how...
WHY AIM AT ‘VULNERABLE SPOTS’
When training civilians, we teach them to DEFEND > OFFEND >NEUTRALIZE> EXIT .
And the shorter this sequence it is better. Because, the longer a confrontation is prolonged, higher is your exposure.
So, in KravMaga, to keep a fight short and decisive, we always aim at the VULNERABLE SPOTS of the opponent’s body.
VULNERABLE SPOTS – NOT TO BE CONFUSED WITH ‘VITAL SPOTS’
Hitting vital spots can result in collateral damage, and even worse - fatality. You are not interested in defending a murder charge, are you?! So forget hitting internal organs.
This write-up is to educate you on stopping a fight ASAP, NOT maiming or killing.
WHAT ARE THE VULNERABLE SPOTS IN THE HUMAN BODY
1) EYES
2) NOSE
3) MOUTH
4) CHIN
5) GROIN (TESTICLES)
6) KNEES
7) ANKLES
WHY WE CALL THESE ‘VULNERABLE SPOTS’
1) THEY ARE EASY TO REACH
All these spots are on the surface. It does not take years of practice to hit them.
For instance, everybody knows Solar plexus is a good spot to bring down an opponent. But hitting it requires precision and angle, which is acquired over a prolonged practice. Even if you have the skills to hit the solar plexus, if the opponent has a beer-belly, you can’t reach it.
2) THESE PARTS CANNOT BE EXERCISED AND TOUGHENED
There are no popular body building exercises to strengthen the testicles, nose or eyes. I have heard of some exotic methods, but they are not for common men.
So even if the opponent is comparatively bigger and stronger, hitting these spots will have the same effect as it has on a smaller person.
3) THEY ARE HIGLY SENSITIVE TO IMPACT
Except the groin, all the vulnerable spots have bone on the surface. But groin is also painful because it has nerve endings bunched together on the scrotum.
So intimidating pain is assured by hitting vulnerable spots.
4) HITTING VULNERABLE SPOTS IMMOBILIZE THE ATTACKER
As mentioned earlier, a confrontation ends not just with defending and offending, but by ‘neutralizing’. That in simple English means, the opponent should lose the capacity to attack and be unable to follow you or get assistance. Only this will give you the crucial window to exit effectively from the scene.
In these times, it also helps to remove the cell phone from him and make it dysfunctional.
Krav Maga is all about common sense!
To know about KravMaga training in India check out www.kravmagaindia.com

Thursday, April 22, 2010

HOW IS KRAV-MAGA DIFFERENT?








How is KravMaga different from traditional martial arts?

KravMaga is a ‘horizontal system’ which combines elements of various fighting systems. One will find –
o   Kicking & Punching  elements of Boxing, Karate & Muay Thai
o   Ground fighting & Grappling like Judo & BJJ
o   Holds & Takedowns like Aikido
o   Defence against Knife attacks like in Kali
o   And also defence against stick attacks, fire-arm threats
We can say KravMaga is a MMA (Mixed Martial System)

KravMaga is NOT a martial art. It’s NOT a Sport. 
KravMaga is a combat system for street survival

Why do you say KravMaga is NOT a martial art?
There are some major differences in the approach to Self-defence by KravMaga
o   There are NO choreographed movements like katas.
Intricate and contrived movements fail during an un-predictable street situation.  KravMaga is based on natural reflex and fast direct attacks using gross motor skills. NO Cosmetics.
o   Kravists DON’T practice with outdated  weapons –like Swords, Spear, Sai or Kama
In KravMaga we practice defending from normal weapons a street criminal carries – like Knife, Stick and Pistol.
In Military & Police KravMaga, more relevant weapons like small arms and long fire arms are included
o   The learning curve is steep in KravMaga. Right from day 1 techniques are taught.
In KravMaga we are pragmatic to the reality that, in 21st century, very few have the time and inclination for sustained and long drawn out practice.
o   In KravMaga, there is NO stress on zen elements
KravMaga is designed for survival in the streets or war-zone. We concentrate in equipping the trainee only for those crises.
For that purpose, there is lots of training on anger management, handling stress and being aware in a crisis.
o   Traditional martial arts were designed mostly for warriors. Why teach them to ordinary civilians?!
Why teach hard killing techniques to a Banker or a Computer Programmer?!
Its enough they are taught how to handle a road rage situation or an eve-teasing scenario.

Why do you say KravMaga is NOT a Sport?
Some more key differences in the approach to Self-defence by KravMaga
o   A Sport training gives wrong tactical thinking while facing a real threat on the street.
Sport is all about scoring points and winning. Real life is about survival.
* Suppose I chased away a criminal who was wielding a knife, but got stabbed in the tummy in the process, have I won or lost ?!
* There is NO referee to intervene and stop the fight if situation goes beyond your control. For instance if you fall down during a sport, the other fighter is asked to stop till you get up. Imagine what will happen if you fall down in a street fight!
o   The ugly repercussions of violence is not registered in the mind of a sports practitioner 
* Suppose a girl is caught alone with a rapist. She is 50 kg and the rapist is 110 kg. Should she get into crane stance and wait for him to approach!
* What should I do if I am road rage situation, when I am with with my wife and kid. Four unsavoury characters, smelling of liquor get down from the other car.
KravMaga prepares you for these extreme situations.
o   KravMaga prepares the mind and body for these ugly scenarios.
When suddenly exposed to unprovoked violence the mind goes into a shock. KravMaga training factors this and prepares the body to react like a reflex action.
To know more about what happens to the system in shock read WHY SOME FREEZE IN A CRISIS AND HOW TO AVOID IT.
o  KravMaga principle is "End the confrontation asap!"
Heroics look good only in movies. In real life, AVOID an issue if you feel you cannot SOLVE that issue ... and QUIT the place asap.
Especially if its not your area / you are outnumbered / the opponent is armed / bigger / fitter / aggressive / drunk / drugged.
So what's KravMaga?
KravMaga is a fighting system, designed for the common man, who may not be ideally fit.  KravMaga absorbs the essence of various martial arts from all over the world and breaks it down to the essentials.
The common man is not a professional fighting machine - he is student, a bank manager, a computer programmer, house wife or anybody like you and me. We are just interested in taking care of ourselves when exposed to an ugly situation. As simple as that!
And what's today’s street scenario - road rage, drunken brawls, sexual harassment, carjacking, mugging, armed robbery, dealing with addicts and so on. That’s what KravMaga equips one to deal with.
So in a typical KravMaga session, apart from basic skills lots of stress is given in training the mind to - handle the sudden shock of irrational violence,
polishing the reflexes to cope with unpredictability,
adapting oneself to neutralize the situation as early as possible
and look for safe exit.
Some basic principles of KravMaga are -
No rules - since on the street there are no rules
No injuries - since it can curtail the productivity of the trainee
Using available objects - since one's body is to be used as the last resort to prevent injuries
No ego - One doesn’t escalate an ugly situation if the possibility of diffusing it is available; the logic is, why get into a situation and then try to solve it?!
KravMaga is very pragmatic. It trains one to –
ACCEPT REALITY
ADAPT FAST &

Sunday, March 28, 2010

SMART STREET FIGHT - CLASSIC EXAMPLE

SMART STREET FIGHTING

Remember these critical points in a street fight -
* Keep moving and don't present a stationary target.
* Don't be in the comfort zone of the attacker/s - keep changing Range, Direction.
* Don't assume there is only one aggressor. Always assume he has got assistance. So scanning your blind side is very critical.
* Since you are assuming your attacker is going to get assistance from friends, you always try to keep the confrontation as short as possible; which prepares you for the next assault.
* For your life's sake don't try fancy stuff - especially intricate locks and high kicks. They are for movies.
* Don't get trapped in the middle of a group.. keep pushing to the periphery of group
* Keep you senses and eyes open for exit routes
* Don't panic.. Even if you don't feel brave, Fake aggression
* If you fall down, try to get up fast.
* If you are down in the midst of a gang, cover your head with arms and just roll up like a snail covering vital organs.
* And use whatever object comes within your reach - chairs, bottles, stones, pen

There is a good representation of this street smartness in this video -
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k8EEN5RkltY

Sunday, March 21, 2010

DON'T TRY TO BE A HERO.. YOU MAY END UP AS A JOKER - PART II


In Part 1 we saw the Options of Confrontation in a hierarchy of -
AVOID >> KEEP MAX DISTANCE >> USE AVAILABLE OBJECTS

Now we come to the options when one is compelled to use one's body

OPTION 4 - LONG RANGE - USE LEGS TO DEFEND AND ATTACK
Legs are the longest weapons in our arsenal. The advantage in using legs is, one's vital organs are kept away from the aggressor's reach - which is very critical in facing attacks using sharp objects.
Legs are the largest group of muscles and bones in the body and can deliver a powerful attack or defense in any direction - Front, Side or Back.

OPTION 5 - MID RANGE - USE PUNCHES AND HAMMER FIST
If in mid distance, which is between kicking and touching distance, punches are effective.
But punches are effective only if it is delivered to the front. What if the aggressor is on one's side or back. Hammer fists are ideal for attacks to the side and back. I personally prefer hammer fists to punches because of its versatility and surprise element.
Most important - Go for the Chin. Hitting an aggressor on the body will NOT generally stop a fight, unless it is really powerful.
Some adapted kicks are also useful in mid-range, like a kick to the groin using the shin part of the leg.

OPTION 6 - SHORT RANGE - USE ELBOW STRIKES
In short range, elbow strikes are very effective. They can be very versatile in a vertical or horizontal arc.
Elbows can be used in any direction - Front, Side or Back.
Again - Go for the Chin. Remember we want to keep the confrontation as short as possible

OPTION 7 - CLOSE RANGE - When the aggressor is ON you, when his body is in contact with yours.
Close range calls for Head-butts, Groin taps, Knee kicks, Stomping, Eye gouging, Elbow pushes.
Even Biting, Choking and Shouting in the ears are damaging and provides the crucial window of opportunity.

Of-course the unsaid elements are COMMON SENSE, AGGRESSION and HANDLING SHOCK. We will be exploring those elements too in future blogs.

The next blog is on SMART STREET FIGHTING

Thursday, March 18, 2010

DON'T TRY TO BE A HERO.. YOU MAY END UP AS A JOKER - PART I

DON'T TRY TO BE A HERO.. YOU MAY END UP AS A JOKER - PART I
The first 3 Options in facing a Crisis on the street... more follows


KravMaga is pragmatic.
Its no-nonsense approach is simply "If from NORMAL condition, one is exposed to a CRISIS, your duty is restore NORMAL condition as early as possible" 

NORMAL >> IN A CRISIS >> NORMAL
......................................................
OPTION 1. AVOID -
there is no point in getting INTO an situation and then fighting tooth & nail to get OUT of it. So prudently one attempts to bye-pass a crisis

                              >>>>>NORMAL>>>>>
NORMAL>>>>^^^           CRISIS               >>>>> NORMAL
......................................................
OPTION 2 - KEEP THE AGGRESSOR AS FAR AWAY AS POSSIBLE
If one cant avoid totally, one tries to maximise the distance from danger.
Suppose a girl is walking on a lonely road. And a potentially dangerous man is walking towards her. The girl immediately crosses the road and goes to the side opposite to the man.
The advantage in this is if the man tries to intersect her by crossing to her side, his intentions become evident early. Its better than being surprised and shocked suddenly.

                                                             NORMAL>>>>>       
NORMAL>>>>>>> NORMAL^^^^^^^^^
    CRISIS>>>>>>>>>>>CRISIS
......................................................
OPTION 3 - IF CONFRONTATION IS INEVITABLE, USE AVAILABLE OBJECTS TO RESIST
Even a small injury can put one back for weeks; and bring down one's productivity, affecting earnings and curbing independence. So avoid using the body as far as possible.KravMaga advocates using available
objects -
SHIELD like objects like back-packs, hand bags.
STICK like objects like umbrellas, brooms
STONE like objects like ashtrays, artifacts
KNIFE like objects pens, spoons
BLINDING objects like sprays, sand
and also DIVERSIONS, which give the extra time to escape or attack

We continue the Hierarchy of Options in Part II

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

5 WAYS TO CHOOSE A STREET-SMART SELF-DEFENSE SYSTEM

You can read the same article in http://vickykapoor.com/quotes/street-smart-system/

Often I have come across this sarcastic query, “Do martial arts really work in a street fight! Is it worth training at all!?”
That may be asking like why maintain a fire brigade since it is idle most of the time.
Any physical activity is beneficial in some manner. It could be games, yoga, swimming, cycling, dance or anything. It could improve some element of total fitness – either cardio-vascular, muscular endurance, flexibility or atleast co-ordination and quick thinking; which help in a crisis.
But, if you are in a job prone to confrontations like security, policing, hotel bouncer etc., learning fighting arts is definitely a plus. Or if your life style makes you vulnerable, like living in a crime prone locality, commuting late or transporting valuables.
But a word of caution, look out for these inherent failures in any fighting art before signing up. These system weaknesses make you victim and at worst a casualty. So choose carefully. Your life depends on it.
What are the signs that a martial art is NOT street-smart -
1) CHOREOGRAPHED MOVEMENTS -
That is nice in dance. In the street it can make one look ridiculous. Because the most shocking realization in the street is the ‘unpredictability’.
Choose a fighting method like KravMaga, which constantly exposes you to attacks from different directions, angles and timings, which makes one adaptable.
2) NO AGGRESSION TRAINING –
Having an obliging partner who holds back his punches politely, stands still till the partner goes through all the movements makes one complacent.
Choose a method which teaches you the basic skills, then escalates physical and mental stress. KravMaga classes have some energy sapping aggression training.
3) TRAINING IN A SINGLE METHOD LIKE STANDING STYLE OR GROUND STYLE
The reality is, one could be standing, sitting or on the ground when attacked. Or it could be even an attack by more than one. Or it could be in a suffocating crowd.
If you are training in a martial art which says punching & kicking will solve all problems, or just grappling will do, start praying in a street fight.
Better still, choose KravMaga which trains one in kicking, punching, grappling, restraining with locks / holds. And to face street weapons like sticks and knives too.
4) COMPLICATED AND EXOTIC TECHNIQUES
Looks great in movies. Or in a demo to school kids.
On the street it’s quick and decisive movements which count. Fancy kicks and locks fail miserably in reality, unless you are facing a still dummy. And they take years of repeated practice to be effective. Leave that to the grey-haired masters.
5) PHILOSOPHICAL MUMBO-JUMBO IN CLASS
Philosophical nuggets went along with the movie Karate Kid. A self-defense class is about facing a rapist, a mugger or a bunch of drunken goons. Learn that first before worrying about self-actualization.
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