If you came here looking for a self-defence or martial arts class and you're not sure what Krav Maga is, then here is a good place to start.
If already know what Krav Maga is or you've heard about it then you might find what's written below useful anyway.
I've broken it down into a long and short version.
The (very) short version
I want you to come with me on this journey. And I want you to picture it.
Imagine you go around the world training in all the martial arts.
From the blistering favelas of Brazil to the frozen hills of Japan, from the eerie streets of Jerusalem to the rain soaked pavements of London…
...you train in every single one. The best of the best.
From this you take the best parts. Combine them to make a self-defence system which:
That's Krav Maga
Now for the long version. So grab a cup of coffee and bacon sandwich
The original techniques of Krav Maga were created by a boxer, gymnast and wrestler named Imi Lichtenfeld in World War 2.
Growing up in Czechoslovakia, he watched helplessly as gangs of Nazi’s beat up the Jewish community
He realised boxing and wrestling weren't enough to defend against a gang of thugs on the street.
So he made his own self-defence system. One which drew from the most effective techniques of all the martial arts.
In 1940s as the Nazi's prepared to invade, Imi fled to what was then known as Palestine. There he began working and training with Jewish settlers who had formed a militia.
When Israel was created in 1948, the people he had trained formed the core of the new army called the Israel defence Forces (IDF).
And Krav Maga became its hand to hand combat training of choice.
Why Krav Maga evolved. The story of Urban Krav Maga.
Fast forward to today and Stewart McGill formed Urban Krav Maga in 2008.
Having got his original instructorship under Eyal Yanilow (second in command to Imi Litechfeld and one of instructors Krav Maga was handed over to) he also worked with a couple of other Krav Maga organisations.
But he wanted to teach something which in his own words wasn't just "Muay Thai with some weapons defences based around the punch and rudimentary groundwork."
He wanted something which:
The influence of UFC, rise of MMA and combat sports on steroids
To be continued...