Audio by Jonathan Fader

So, you’ve been practicing Krav Maga, or another self-defence style, for a while and you are starting to realize that, sometimes, under distress you cannot get the technique to work. Occasionally, it’s because the technique you are being taught works, for most people, but not you. Other times it is a matter of the physical size difference between you and your opponent. And other times it’s because, at the end of the day, under distress techniques can fail.

It is not that they are bad techniques, they are good, high percentage techniques, but the truth is techniques can and do fail; even if they are more likely to work than not.

A key thing to remember is that Techniques, in themselves, are the last step to any good Krav Maga or self defense approach. Before you have to actually use techniques, you should have practiced things like critical thinking and the stages of self-defence.

But, if you ever find yourself, either in practice or in the street, struggling to do the technique you were taught, Don’t Worry, just remember this simple principle:

When in doubt hit the groin or the head.

Football in groin.gif

No matter where you are, even if you are dazed and confused, orient yourself based on which of the two is easiest to access. If you are going for the head, punches, palm strikes and hammer fists are all good options; go for the eyes in particular.

If you are going for the groin, punches, palm strikes, and (you guessed it) hammer strikes are appropriate. If you are able to, you can also grab the groin, hard! Just know that grabbing the groin may cause a panic response in your opponent, where they try to end you, rather than a hit and release response.

Either way, if everything goes wrong, remember that techniques are at the bottom of the self-defense totem pole; they can fail, so always fall back to simple principles like going for the Groin or Head.

*Topics under any principle category (Eg. Krav Maga Principles) may be updated from time to time.  So check-in every few months to see if the posts have been updated.