Get Aggressive!

We must learn how to defend anything that comes at us.  We must understand the concepts and principles of self defense, and then create the most effective ways to get out of each situation safely.

The other element to being able to defend oneself is learning how to be as aggressive as possible, and then harnessing that aggressiveness and adrenaline to create an even more effective defense.

This is not something that you can study or learn outside of a training room.  You must FEEL it.  You must feel the adrenaline and intensity through your entire body and use it to make your attacks stronger and more effective.

We do many drills to practice under stress and while extremely fatigued, trying to simulate what it feels like in a real fight.  We push our students and teachers to fight when they think they don’t have an ounce of energy left in their bodies, and they learn to overcome even the toughest obstacles.

Learning to be aggressive will build confidence and help you believe that you can fight back against anything.  When you realize the importance of this, your ability to defend yourself will dramatically increase!

In this week’s video we do one of my favorite drills.  Fighting as hard as you can while being pulled in a different direction helps you feel the adrenaline and overcome obstacles while you are attempting to strike.

In the end, if you must fight for your life.  Do not hold back.  Flip on the light switch and go until you are ready to leave the situation safely!

 

Ok, that’s all for now.  Enjoy the video, be safe… and GO DO SOME KRAV MAGA TODAY!

-AJ  @AJDraven – Twitter

Your feedback on the post is welcome.

Please leave it in the comments, or on Twitter or Facebook!

 

 

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Krav Maga Stick Defense

I am a big fan of baseball, (Go Cardinals!)… However I am not a fan of someone swinging a baseball bat or a stick at my head!

In this week’s video, we discuss what it takes to defend against a stick attack coming in at a horizontal plane, similar to that of a baseball swing.  The attacker can use one or both hands on the stick, which doesn’t really change my tactics while defending.

As usual, when defending against any attack, we must analyze the inherent danger and create our defense from there.  The strength of a weapon such as a stick, bat, or blunt object is its length.  If used correctly, a stick can be incredibly powerful and even fatal if the blow is delivered effectively.  For this reason we must treat a stick attack as a potential deadly threat, and defend accordingly.

When this threat is presented, I believe you need to make a quick decision.  The choices are simple… Run away, or close the distance and strike while defending.  Staying in range of the stick, but out of range to counter attack, is potentially the biggest mistake you could make in this situation.  Remember, the stick will be moving fastest at the point furthest from the attackers arm, so getting inside that point on the stick is crucial.

When dealing with a horizontal swing, it is best to try and close the distance by building a wall and protecting yourself, and then striking as aggressively as possible.  If you can get inside the sticks long range, the weapon for the most part neutralized and the fight is on.  Now your goal is to strike as effectively as possible and then take the stick away when possible (or, as I prefer to do, counter attack until they are knock out or no longer fighting back and the stick will fall out of their hands).

Ok that’s all for now, enjoy the video, be safe, and… GO DO SOME KRAV MAGA TODAY!

-AJ  @AJDraven

Your feedback on the post is welcome.

Please leave it in the comments, or on Twitter or Facebook!

Kidnapping attempts in Los Angeles and How to Defend

This week there have been some attempts at kidnapping women in the Santa Monica area, right near the Krav Maga Worldwide Headquarters in Los Angeles.  Fortunately, no one was hurt, but I think it is important to address this issue as anyone can attempt this attack at any time and they do not need a weapon to do so.

The attackers used the ‘Bear Hug’ technique from behind, where they wrap their arms around an unsuspecting person and attempt to lift them or pull them away.  While the initial attack of arms around the body isn’t necessarily life threatening, if you are removed from a location or kidnapped, the chances of survival are significantly reduced.

If you’re aware of an attacker attempting to come up to you, be assertive, run, and call for help.  Being aware of your surroundings is paramount to being safe and you can prevent many attacks before they happen.  It is a good idea to walk in a group of people if possible, and try to stay away from unsafe areas after dark.

Sometimes the attack may happen regardless of your awareness, and once an attacker gets in close and prevents you from leaving the situation, it is time to defend.  When grabbed in a bear hug type attack, it is important to remember these two words: ‘Base and Space’.  Your goal is to get a good strong base with your feet, making yourself heavy with your knees bent and ready to attack.  If possible, try to keep as much space as possible between the hips of your attacker and yor own, as they won’t be able to control you as well without their hips in the right place.

From here on it’s all about the counter attacks; Striking to vulnerable areas on the body, with your elbows, stomps, and hands.  Once you get the attacker to loosen up, turn around and keep attacking until they are no longer a threat.
See the video for details!

Ok, that’s all for now.  Enjoy the video, be safe… and GO DO SOME KRAV MAGA TODAY!

Your feedback on the blog post is welcome.
Please leave it in the comments or on Twitter or Facebook!

-Aj @ajdraven

Krav Maga Knife Defense

There is not a lot more dangerous than a knife attack.  It is the most unpredictable weapon that we must deal with, and unfortunately, the most easily accessible.  Anyone can own and carry an edged weapon.  They come in all shapes, colors, and sizes; and they can be concealed so well that you may not even know that an attacker is carrying one.

There have been many occasions when a victim didn’t even realize that they were being stabbed, instead thinking that they were being punched only to realize later that they were bleeding, cut, or even fatally wounded.

The knife attack can come from any number of angles, which makes it even more dangerous.  The majority of the time, the knife attacker will be attempting multiple stabs, not just the initial strike.

For all of these reasons and more, it is crucial to understand what is in my opinion the most important Krav Maga principle while defending against a knife attack.  That principle is making a defense along with a simultaneous counter attack.

In this video, we are working on defending a downward angle or ‘Ice Pick’ stab.  The attacker is already very close to me and is coming at me with a stab, so I am forced to use my hands to defend (with a greater distance between us, I may use other tactics).  In this scenario, I am using what we call one of our 360 defenses, where I form a right angle with my arm, maintaining a bend at my elbow and attacking the attack aiming my wrist to the wrist of the attackers.  By maintaining this angle with my arm, I am stopping the attack away from my body, and not allowing the knife to slide and strike me elsewhere.

To prevent additional stabs and to attempt to get control of the knife, I am punching the attacker in the face as hard as I can at the exact moment that I am defending the stab.  My goal is to illicit a response from the attacker, whether that means that I knock him out, or simply get him to flinch for a brief second, I can use this to gain control and eventually take the weapon away.

There is nothing easy about this defense, and it takes time and a lot of practice to master.  Even then, it is possible that the defense may not work perfectly.  We must be prepared to disengage if the punch wasn’t effective or if we a not able to get good control immediately.

In this extremely dangerous situation, I believe that a well timed and placed punch, can and will save your life.

Ok, that’s all for now. Enjoy the video, be safe… and GO DO SOME KRAV MAGA TODAY!

-AJ @ajdraven

Your feedback on the blog post is welcome.
Please leave it in the comments.

Anderson Silva broke his leg, and I teach you how!

Whether you watched UFC 168 or not, you most likely heard the rumblings about the nasty leg break of the former UFC champion, Anderson Silva. Not for the feint of heart to watch, Chris Weidman defended a low round kick from Silva, which snapped the Brazilian legend’s leg at the shin. Hopefully Silva can comeback to the octagon to fight again, but it will take a miraculous recovery.

The defense that Weidman used is quite simple, sometimes called a shin check against a low round kick. In this week’s video, I go over the technique needed to make an effective defense against an attacker attempting to kick you in this way. Our goal is not necessarily to break his shin in half, but hopefully we can defend the kick cleanly, counter attack if necessary, and go on our way safely.

A low round kick is generally aimed at the thigh, or worse, the outside or inside of the knee. My goal when defending is to protect my knee from moving in a direction that it is not built to go. This is why step number one in this defense is to line up my knee and and toe perpendicular to the angle of the kick. I then lift my leg and use the large/strong part of my upper shin, against the kickers instep or lower shin. I must recoil quickly to make my defense as sharp as possible and of course get my foot back to the ground.

From here I can counter attack immediately to prevent additional attacks. I recommend using shin guards while practicing this defense, as it can be painful especially if you are not used to the impact in this sensitive area. The more that you practice, the less it will hurt and after a while you should be able to use your shin to make an effective defense without any padding.

Ok, thats all for for now. Enjoy the video, Be safe, and GO DO SOME KRAV MAGA TODAY!!

-AJ @ajdraven

 

Hammerfist to the Side

Happy New Year! 2014 is alive and kicking… So lets keep it going with one of my favorite Krav Maga techniques, Hammerfist to the Side.

Hammerfists are great attacks as they are generally easy to perform, safe, and versatile.  We can throw a hammerfist in pretty much any direction that we can move our arms.  Probably the most common use for this attack, is the hammerfist to the side.

When an attacker comes at you from the side, it is a good idea to turn and face him, so that you can get into a good stance and put your self in the best possible position to defend if necessary.  The hammerfist will serve as good protection for you as you turn in to face an attacker by covering your face with your arm and elbow, especially if you tuck your chin.

When attacking, be sure to push with your opposite foot and drive through the target with your legs, hips, and then upper body.  Snap and extend your arm just before you connect with the target.  This will be a very strong combative if you perform it correctly. (Be sure that your partner is holding the pad correctly to ensure safety while training).

Ok, that’s all for now, enjoy the video, and of course… Go do some KRAV MAGA today!!

-AJ @ajdraven