Arriving at Fiumicino airport in Rome on my way to my seminar in Sardegna I notice many interesting signs. I have always been a sign person. The catchy phrases, the play on words, the goal of capturing your attention and imagination; T shirts and advertisements grab my attention. Sadly for the advertisers this never convinces me to buy anything from them. I have a simple policy: I only buy what I need, plus gifts for a long list of family and friends...
Going up the escalator I see the following sign, "To break the rules you first must master them."
I cannot recall what it was they were trying to sell as my mind immediately realized the Krav Maga application.
To break the rules you first must master them
Understand the concept and the techniques become simple and easy to apply.
It is based on concepts that must be studied and understood. These concepts, once understood, can be applied to an unlimited number of situations. They can and must be adapted for every body type, every age category, gender and level of health and physical fitness. The concepts allow the techniques to be modified to fit the individual, rather than the other way around.
Basically what we are doing is teaching people to break the rules. But here is the difference.
We encourage questions, we encourage challenges from our members, our students, our instructors, but...not from just anyone. You must first train humbly, you must first learn our techniques, understand the concepts, and learn the rules of how to apply them. Then, and only then, you learn to break the rules.
I do not expect every student to look like me. I do not want "master worship", I do not need to be imitated. I do not for you to understand what I am doing so you can apply it to your own life.
I am not a Roman general or emperor who needs a statute made of himself; my goal is not my own immortality but your survival.
Krav Maga is not a free-for-all, we have rules which must be learned, but then, as in all systems of law, you must find the exceptions; the rules are there to serve us, to make our lives better.
I do not want to see you standing in a horse stance for half an hour because that worked for someone in Japan long ago, I want you to understand our concepts and apply them to your life, today.
The rules of Krav Maga must be understood, but not followed blindly. Blind following of rules does not allow for growth.
You must not become a slave to the rules but a Master of the rules; learn them, respect them, apply them, and when necessary break them, but even then you are still applying the concepts of Krav Maga.
To fully understand what I am staying you must come train with us.
By Moshe Katz
Israeli Krav International, Israel