Posts Tagged ‘BC’


Recently I watched a show on youtube is called “ Warrior Quest “ by a Czech Krav Maga organization. The purpose of the show is to send several people to do their military Krav Maga instructor course. The show begins in Czech then proceeds to Israel. Most part of the show is about a series of harsh physical training to weed out the weak ……all the way down to 10 people. It is interesting to see the selection process but frankly I do not agree with the ideology and methods of the show.

The selection process of the show is harsh and all original candidates from Czech only one student made it to the end. I wonder what’s the purpose of this harsh selection. The majority of selection process is about harsh physical workout instead of Krav Maga training. What benefit do people get out of this process other than some bragging rights, ugly scars and huge medical bills. As a soldier, I have been though similar selection process from boot camp (ran by Airborne), wildness survival course, special force selection to mentally exhausting air force pilot and navigator selection course. I have suffered though similar injuries and physical exhaustion; however, the one difference is that “ I was covered by military. “ If I got injured during the selection process the military is obligated to take care of me both financially and medically that is. More than I can say about these candidates in this show.


Krav Maga students are not soldiers. Some Krav Maga students are soldiers but most Krav Maga schools do not cater toward soldiers. The idea of Krav Maga is about teaching as many people as possible and to develop them with skills necessary for them to survive. One fellow spend several thousand Euro only to be washed out first day during the selection. I find that counter-productive for a person’s progress and personal safety. The institute that does the enrollment should assess the student’s physical abilities and deny enrollment if the guy clearly is not up for the challenge. Several thousand Euro is enough money for the guy to train full time in Israel or in Thailand for several months. I am unsure if the guy got a refund or exchange but the purpose of his trip lasted only one day. One thing I firmly believe is that everyone is at a different level. It is up to the school and the instructors to develop students where they at and then help them achieve their goal, instead of weeding them out like the military.


Our students can be a warrior and fighter but our students are not soldiers. Our school also offers tactical shooting training and frankly, when in hand- to-hand combat our guys are higher level than average soldiers. ( we welcome any soldier to come and test it out ) but again our students are not soldiers. The reason is simple, they are not paid to do it full time 24/7 nor have the obligation to go though ridiculous and hurtful training that might killed the students in the process.

Modern military, like the Canadian Army has very high standard when it comes to training. Even with that in mind, I can count on both my hands and feet the times I would be dead or seriously injured because things could go horribly wrong. No civilian Krav Maga institute can accept the same level of risk in training as a government institute. Nor should the mandate be the same. The military is selecting the right people for the right type of the job but a civilian Krav Maga institute should be about teaching the right courses to the right people. If there are so many people got washed out from this course, then I firmly believe these courses were offered to the wrong group of people. Any Krav Maga institution should be about developing the right people with the right courses.

For those who want to have the military experience, I can only offer one advice, to join the military – reserve and National Guard are options for those who do not want to commit too long in the life of uniform. Training and skill sets are something that you can acquire at different civilian training school but the harsh, inhuman, rude, less fun, boring and ridiculous part of military experience can only be experienced though the real deal – why ? because military owns their people- literately.




Sorry for the long break on the podcasts and posts but it is all explained at the beginning of this episode!!

Josh Hensman

(We meant to have a photos of him receiving his certificate, but they were all blurry 🙁 )

Joshs Company Forge Fitness

Josh has had a passion for martial arts since seeing a video clip of Bruce Lee in action as a kid. He first studied Karate and then at University he began to explore Wing Chun Kung Fu and Capoeira.

After arriving in Canada in 2007 Josh moved to boxing and kickboxing, along with renewing his pursuit of Karate.

In 2014 he represented BC at the Canada Karate

Championships – a highlight in his sport martial arts career. As a qualified fitness instructor and personal trainer he often found himself working in fitness and recreation environments where martial arts were occurring. This is where he first encountered Krav Maga. Josh was immediately captivated by the practical, easy to learn, and adaptable nature of Krav Maga. This was a martial art that was continually evolving! Josh continues to study Krav Maga through IKI and UTKM. Josh completed his UTKM Assistant Instructor training in Sept 2015 which nearly took him a year to achieve. Josh regularly teaches our kids classes as well as some of our white belt classes. He also is our head fitness trainer and instructor.


A student of mine, Geoff, asked me “I am doing a one month long canoeing trip up in the Yukon, and I would like to get a bear defense gun. What would you suggest?“. Truth be told, I have no clue what kind of firearm or caliber of ammo is appropriate for bear defense. The only firearm related to a bear defense course that I have taken is my Wildness Survival course with the Canadian army, and all we use is Bird Shot. In general, the instructor told us the bears in this region are pretty well fed so you should be fine. We were issued a Reignmonton 870 shotgun with four rounds of bird shot and we were out in the wild for four days on our own.

I have to confess that I am slightly afraid of bears after seeing these great creatures in sanctuary, the zoo and the wild. I have also heard many stories about bears from seasonal hunters, park rangers, and army buddies, and I hope I will never run into a bear in the wild in this lifetime. Based upon my research, it might be better to use bear spray instead firearms to protect yourself in the wild. Overall, bear spray is still a better choice for people who do not wish to devote themselves to be proficient with firearms. A person without good training with a firearm can be more dangerous to others and him or herself in a fight or flight situation. The advantage of bear spray is it works, and the disadvantage of bear spray is it can be affected by the wind and therefore works both ways. According to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service research, almost 50 % of people using guns suffered injuries. However, a trustworthy firearm might give people an additional tool when they are in the wild especially dealing with persistent bears which think you are a meal.


Bears are smart, fast, and powerful. It is the top predator on earth. Bears are omnivorous but they still prefer a meat diet on most occasions and its prey such as moose are often much larger than humans. In North America, there are four species of bears:  Black bear, grizzly bear, brown bear and polar bear.


A black bear on average weighs 300 pounds, and lives close to humans. The number of black bear attacks on humans is higher than other bears – due to its close range with humans.


A grizzly bear on average weighs 700 pounds, lives far away from humans, generally avoids humans, but once provoke will be extremely aggressive.


A brown bear on average weighs 1000 pounds, lives far away from humans, and in some cases associate humans with food. Brown bear attacks tend to result in serious injury and in some cases death.


A polar bear on average weighs 900 pounds, lives far away from humans, and it will associate humans as food.

In places like the remote wildness of the Yukon, men are at mercy of great bears if they are not careful, but in most cases bears will not attack unless they feel their young ones and themselves are being threatened. Only on some occasions have bears associated humans as food.


After some online research and consulting some hunting and firearm experts, here is the advice I came up for Geoff:

1. Shotgun – Slug


A 12 gauge shotgun is the most common firearm used by people who work in the wild. The ammo people use against a bear is generally a slug. A slug is basically a big chunk of heavy lead. A shotgun slug has enough kinetic energy to take down any big game that includes bears.


The disadvantage of a shotgun that is not rifle-sighted is that its kinetic energy will decrease significantly beyond 100 yards. A brown bear can run 30 miles per hour which means a bear can run 100 yards in 6 seconds, so you better be able to fire quickly with a shotgun or get a firearm that has better engagement distance than a shotgun with slug. My friend Andrew Clark, a hunter and firearm expert, also suggests adding buckshot in the end of tubular magazine in addition to the slug to increase hit probability; however, buck shot might not have enough penetration power.

The advantage of shotguns is its price. An average shotgun runs from $300- $800 and a box of slugs is cheaper than some rifle ammo. The action on pump guns is very reliable even in the worst environment. You also do not need a special tool to take care of complicated parts on firearms such as a gas regulator. Last but not least, a short shotgun also provide better maneuverability when you are inside your tent; just in case a big fuzzy head decide to sneak in in the middle of night.

 2. Rifle :

The main purpose for my student’s trip is bear defense, not bear hunting. Compared to a shotgun a high caliber rifle seems to be the logical choice. It should be reliable, have a range beyond 100 yards, and be able to project rounds downrange as fast as possible with enough impact to stop a 1000 lb killing machine looking to have a quick meal. So we are looking for either a semi-automatic or lever action type of rifle. This rifle should be able to fit ammo large enough to take down a bear.

Suggested Ammo:

  1. 30-06 ith 180 grain to 220 grain
  2. .300 Magnums-180-220 grain bullets
  3. .300 Winchester Magnum
  4. .270 Winchester
  5. .308 Winchester
  6. .338
  7. .375
  8. 45-70
  9. 454 casull

30-06, .300 Magnum, . 300 …..a shooter needs to be able to place all his or her shots within an 8-inch circle out to 200 yards from a sitting or kneeling position. Anything that is .338s or .375s is more forgivable when comes to shot placement on a bear. Chuck Hawk describes best in his article Firearms for Defense against Bears: “the bullet need to have sufficient caliber (cross sectional area), penetration and deliver sufficient energy to get the job done. It is ideal if the bullet is of the controlled expands on type to maximize shock and tissue destruction, but it must not break-up on heavy bones.” We have to also consider logistics. Many experts all agree that it is best to pick a rifle that uses common rounds. Many of these remote places in the Yukon do not carry a lot of variation of ammo. Luckily, for Geoff’s case weight is not an issue since he is doing a canoeing trip so heavier rifles are also part of the consideration.

 Rifle Choice:  

Semi- Automatic: The advantage of a semi-automatic rifle for bear defense is that it is able to project rounds downrange as fast as possible. However, the delicacy of a semi-automatic rifle might not be suitable for long travel in the wildness. After all, more parts mean more chance that something will break.

Browning BAR series


Anything made by Browning is a good choice. After all, the Canadian Army is still using Browning High Power as a standard issue side arm. BAR uses .30-06, 300 Win Mag, 270 Win

Benili R1 Big game rifle series


Benili R1 is Benili’s new line of semi- automatic hunting rifle. R1 runs 30-06 Springfield, .300 Win Mag, .338 Win Mag.

Lever action rifle : Marlin – Model 336C , Classical Model 1895, XLR. Browning – BLR, Henry – 45- 70. Lever action rifle has strong recoil but has fewer pieces inside compared to a semi-automatic rifle. In some way it is more reliable. The shooter has to really train to shoot a lever action rifle to compensate for the recoil and muzzle movement.


The disadvantage of using a rifle dealing with bear attacks is that if you shot a Alaska Brown bear that is charging at you from 300 yards you might be out of luck explaining that to a Conservation Officer. Very much like self defense against humans, you are not allowed to shoot someone out of distance because you feel threatened.



when chose handgun against bear ! be Dirty Harry

Handgun is a really good choice for people who travel in the wild. Handguns are easy to carry and can be readily used if needed. Calibers such as.357 Magnum bullet and .44 Magnum is sufficient enough to deal with bears. Sadly in Canada, it is hard to obtain an open carry permit for handguns. People can still obtain it if one can prove that one works in the field frequently, for example, a geologist.

Shooting Skill:

Regardless of the type of firearms you are going to get, you should be able to place a well aimed shot with the first shot and the rest of the shots should immediately follow. You need to have nerves of steel facing a charging bear and strong enough to control the recoil of the rifle and muzzle. Immediate action such as reloading or changing the weapon should always be conducted after you empty the magazine.

We Canadians love our wildness. We take every chance we can get to immerse ourselves in the wild but we should not forget to be humble in front of Mother Nature. Once we step in the woods, we are part of the food chain and are no longer the top predator without our tools.


  3. Andrew Clark, firearm expert & hunter