How to Tell Genuine Krav Maga from the Imitators

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Author: Laurent Mougeot

There is nothing more frustrating, as a qualified professional Krav Maga Instructor, than having to cope with the ever-growing crowd of wannabes and fakes. As Krav Maga grows in popularity and people are starting to associate the name with realistic, practical self defense techniques, an increasing number of unscrupulous individuals and schools are making a prompt apparition and offering “real Israeli Krav Maga” literally overnight. Karate and other martial arts teachers suddenly call themselves Krav Maga Instructors. These people are not only making money exploiting our system’s name but they are also putting their students at risk by teaching them utter crap that will get them killed if they ever try to use it in a real-life situation while calling it Krav Maga.

So, how can someone tell the difference between genuine Krav Maga and the many frauds out there? Here are some pointers that I hope will help some people make the right choice for their self defense needs:

1) As with anything else, you are investing your time, money and energy into something, you have the right to ask the Instructor about his/her background and qualifications, and do not hesitate to demand to see diplomas yourself. If the Instructor is offended by this, just walk out. Now, make sure that the Instructor is certified by a genuine Krav Maga organization with clear links to Israel and direct lineage to the founder of Krav Maga, ImiLichtenfield.

2) Ask the Instructor what his level is and if he is still training with Master level Instructors (they are only a few). In general, once an Instructor severs all ties to Israel and a ligitimate Krav Maga organization, his level will decrease from lack of supervision and further high level training and he will start thinking that he can make Krav Maga“better” and change the system until it is no longer Krav Maga. Since new Krav Maga organizations are being created every year, do your research and make sure you are dealing with a well-established one. For good quality Krav Maga, examples of genuine, Israeli based Krav Maga organizations include:

• IKMF – International Krav Maga Federation • KMG – Krav Maga Global

Author: Laurent Mougeot