Just like the Krav Maga we practice, UTKM is a principle based school. As such, we have 3 core values that dictate everything we do.
We train people, not belts or certificates
To build the person, through time, commitment, and hard work.
A belt is just a milestone to show hard work. A certificate is just a recognition of completion. They don’t truly indicate one’s skill or overall capability. The fact is, they are just a milestone along a journey, and actual skill level may vary from person to person at the same belt level. While a rank or qualification could indicate skill level, a belt or certificate is just a material thing; our real goal is to build our students into something more.
We want to teach people to properly defend themselves, not to give false confidence in their abilities. As such we are not a “belt factory” and only allow people to test for each level, or advanced to the next course, if they demonstrate a grasp of the required proficiencies. Giving someone a rank just because they have been training “long enough” in Krav Maga, just to make them feel better even though they barely show the skill level, is dangerous; it can give people a false notion of their ability to defend themselves. Some people may meet the minimum requirements and be allowed to move forward, while others may spend years training at each stage.
Building people takes time, commitment, and hard work from both UTKM and our students.
We turn lambs into lions
To turn everyday citizens into everyday warriors.
Aside from it being our slogan, this sentiment is something we truly believe in. Confidence is one of the most important aspects of personal success. Whether a person comes to UTKM with it or needs our help, we will grow and refine your confidence into something that will help you succeed in all aspects of life.
Lambs follow the herd. They don’t think for themselves, and they don’t know how to overcome whatever obstacles lay ahead. They just follow. Lions don’t hesitate to act. They have confidence knowing they are at the top of the food chain. Herd mentality (or mob mentality) is human nature, and it will be so long as humans continue to exist as we are. Our goal is to help you evolve and break free of the mold; to truly develop your critical thinking skills. In Krav Maga failing to critically think may get you punched in the face. In real life it can stall your personal growth, as you failed to think critically and made the wrong decision. Don’t just do something because “it’s the way it always was,” or because you were told to do so, even if it is us telling you (sometimes we lie to make a point). Critical thinking and being a lion isn’t just about strength, it’s about the ability to take the information you have and use it to grow and adapt.
Our programs, Krav Maga and otherwise, are all designed to take you from nothing to something, or from something to something better. We will help you grow into the best person you can be, both physically and mentally.
We never stop learning and growing
To always keep an open mind and keep learning.
“Emptiness the starting point. – In order to taste my cup of water you must first empty your cup. My friend, drop all of your preconceived fixed ideas and be neutral. Do you know why this cup is so useful? Because it is empty.” – Bruce Lee, Striking Thoughts (2000), p.2
The day you think you know everything, the day you think you are untouchable, the day you think you will never be better; that’s the day you are defeated. This is where ego often comes in. We all have it, even if you deny it. If you let your ego overwhelm you it will cost you every time. However, there is often a confusion between confidence and ego from the outside view. Confidence is based on past experience and results, which have been positive or were negative (mistakes) but from which you learned. Confidence, therefore, is based on logic and historical precedence. Ego, on the other hand, is based on one’s emotional need to feel important or to be the best; this is often not in alignment with reality. For, unless you have consistently proven yourself to be the best compared to others, you are only lying to yourself. Remember, there can be only one best, so until you are it you will always need to keep learning and growing. UTKM students are expected to keep open minds and learn from outside sources, even if they are ones we personally dislike. It is only through continuous study and honest self-assessment that you will gain the perspective to know what is true and what is a distraction from your personal journey.
So never stop learning and always keep an open mind.