A student of mine, Doug sent me a youtube video and asked my opinion about this video:

I replied to Doug that I agree with most of what the instructor in this video said but I also have my own points to add. I believe punches are still valid attacks. First of all: it is a human reaction to make a fist under threat or other extreme stress. I would suggest that all my students in my class, except for law enforcement officers, make fists when they attack. I’d rather trade broken phalanges for fluid, powerful and natural attacks.

Secondly, in Krav Maga we punch with at a 45-degree angle to reduce impact to the finger bones, and from there we can quickly transfer to hammer strike. Also, by doing this, we condition our knuckles to take impacts. Last but not least, the instructor (camouflage pants) is “telegraphing” his attacks a lot prior to his strike as normal people do. But we are trained Krav Maga fighters: Any trained fighters want to strike the person with his fist rapidly, and with accuracy, power and speed. He or she can do it without telegraphing and giving the other person a chance to flinch. The following sequence attacks should be knee-elbow-kick instead of punches.

Now, this is just my own approach. Like the instructor in this video I have my own beliefs base upon my own training and experience. Doug and other students should form their own points. My body shape and life experience is different from my students and who am I to tell them this is the only way? I believe in telling students the textbook method, other school methods, and asking them to form their own method.

Krav Maga is Science+Experience. Science does not change but individual experience differs from people to people. I do not have all the solutions but I can give you all the science (knowledge + tactics + techniques) and you can find your own answer though your own experience (real life dangers + scenario, play + sparring). The trick is to always be able to find one’s own solution. On the street, I do not know how you will react or what kind of situation you will be in. No matter how seasoned and experienced I am as a Krav Maga instructor or combat psychology expert, I am not you. I can give you some general guidelines on how people react but I am not god nor I can predict the future. Real life situations are chaotic and unpredictable. I recall back in the days when I worked as an armored car guard for cash transport. Our AO (Area of Operations) was in the worst neighborhood of East Vancouver. We were a three-man crew, highly trained and armed to the teeth. We drilled on the worst types of situation’s we could imagine finding ourselves in. One night we came out of the bank and there was a junkie woman climbing on our car and trying to rip off the side mirror of the armored truck. Because of our rules of engagement, my partner and the driver and I could only look at this lady ripping the truck’s side mirror off piece by piece while pounding on the window. All we could do was call the police and hope they would come on time to be able to stop the woman in time to prevent major damage to the car. That’s right; one 80-pound East Vancouver junkie stopped three strong, armed men. There is an SOP (Standard Operation Procedure) for this, and an SOP for that, but no SOP telling us how to deal with a junkie, high as kite, who was ripping our truck apart.

Real life dangers can come in many forms; as instructors we cannot foresee every scenario. It is best if we teach the students the tools of fighting and the mindset of experimentation and exploration so they can form their own methods against dangers on their own paths.

Written By:Borhan

Edited By : Max Birkner