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Krav Maga: An Essential Guide to the Renowned Method--for Fitness and Self-Defense Kindle Edition
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- David Barton, fitness expert and owner, David Barton Gyms
"Training with krav maga instructor David Kahn was an honor and privilege, and the tactics he teaches are a valuable skill."
- Mark A. Hanafee, U. S. Coast Guard Police Training Officer
"David Kahn is a wonderful teacher and I wholeheartedly recommend this book to anyone--male or female, big or small, or fat."
- James Gandolfini, actor (The Sopranos)
About the Author
- ASIN : B003G93ZLI
- Publisher : St. Martin's Griffin; First edition (September 6, 2004)
- Publication date : September 6, 2004
- Language : English
- File size : 3378 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 243 pages
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #367,535 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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David is a wonderful teacher. In both his videos and books, David is very clear, his explanations and illustrations make it easy to understand and learn each move at home.
His deep krav knowledge is evident immediately. David is very matter of fact. This is not a motivational work out book. Just like the defense system he is teaching, david is direct, practical, and highly effective.
This book and David’s DVDs (http://www.amazon.com/Mastering-Volume-Self-Defense-Beginner-Advanced/dp/B0052T6XLY/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top?ie=UTF8) have been the perfect complement to my in-person training.
This book helps to reinforce the proper techniques, form and approaches learned during in-person training. And David's products have helped me stay ahead of my in-person training. If you live somewhere that does not have a good krav maga school to train at, this book & the DVDs would make a great alternative to in-person training if that is your only option. Also, it's important to note, many krav moves & techniques are hard to train without a partner.
As corny as it may sound, i'm grateful to David for taking the time and doing the hard work to produce his books and videos. he's helped me progress much faster than i would have without him.
THANK YOU DAVID.
David is as top notch a teacher as I have ever seen. His style is down to earth. He is extremely knowledgeable and he keeps it real. He does a wonderful job of explaining exactly what you will be doing; he leaves little for you to have to try and figure out on your own. You will not find a whole lot to complain about here. Sure, the pictures are illustrations, not photos. Big deal. A punch is a punch and a kick is a kick. It ain't rocket science and David is not really teaching anything new here. But that is the beauty of his "system"; it's instinctual. For example, when someone tries to choke you, your first reaction is is reach up and grab the attacker's hands (the plucking technique). Or, when someone is swinging a wild haymaker at the side of your head, your first instinct may be to either throw your arm up to block (360 defense) or lean back away from it (upper body retreat). For the most part, you're doing this stuff already and probably don't even know it. All David and his predecessors have done is give names to everything so when he says, "Today we're working on X," everyone will know what X is and be on the same page training-wise.
To be fair, and so that you see that I am not a Khan mark, I do have a few reservations. The biggest problem I have with Krav Maga -- David's system included -- as well as any other martial art, is that specific defenses simply do not work in a real street fight. What is a "specific" defense, you ask? This is where you learn one technique for a wrist grab, another for an elbow grab, another for a shoulder grab, another for a lapel grab, another for a... well, you get the point. There is simply no way a person under stress is going to remember specific defenses for specific attacks. Action is faster than reaction and by the time you have figured out what is coming it is too late. There is just no for "forgiveness", so to speak, in that type of training. If you miscalculate the attack, or you lose it on step 3 of a 6 step technique, your brain has to disengage for a second or two and process the situation. This is a second or two you simply do not have! Moreover, it is a clear violation of Hick's Law, which states the more options you have at your disposal the longer it takes for your brain to decide which one to use. Khan limits the techniques one must learn, and that helps. And KM, or at least Khan's version of it, seems more philosophical than technique based.
Having said that, however, David does offer something of a solution. It is called Retzev, a Hebrew word that means "continuous motion". Basically, the idea is that once you start defending yourself you don't stop until the threat is no longer a problem. Granted it will take some time -- a few months of dedicated training, minimum -- to develop this ability, but it does eventually negate the specific defense and Hick's Law issues for the most part. You will eventually get to the point where you don't think, you just react. I just think we can shortcut the process by not focusing on specific defenses in the first place. Give me a single, effective response whether the dirtbag has a fist, club, knife, or gun any day of the week. One solution to cover as many scenarios as possible. Kahn's close. Certainly closer than any traditional martial art, but he's not quite there yet.
The most valuable section of the book is not the techniques or really even the philosophy. As mentioned, this is all pretty instinctual stuff that you do already or at least will pick up quickly. No, as important as all that is, the most valuable section is the 12-week workout in the back. It is basically a daily schedule of drills that, should you follow, will go far in helping you develop your retzev ability.
For the record, I do not know David Khan, though I would like to meet him one day and would love the opportunity to train with him (and maybe a beer or three.) I do, however, own all three of his books and his first set of DVD's (He has since come out with a Vol. 2 DVD set that I have yet to review.) Now it's been said that you cannot learn a "martial art" from a book. For the most part this is true. I shudder at the thought of someone trying to learn, say Aikido, from a book or even a DVD. Such arts are like a Swiss watch: fine tuned and intricate. You need an instructor there, watching over your shoulder, making sure you're doing everything exactly as required. Not so with Khan's material. It's simple, effective, down and dirty street fighting. So I respectfully disagree. If one were to invest in Khan's books and DVD's, pick up some minimal equipment (e.g., a Century BOB dummy), and follow his 12-week schedule, one very much could learn to defend oneself in the comfort of home. There is nothing fancy here, and that is what makes it brutally effective. The challenge will be in maintaining the intensity you will experience in a real fight. You must work out hard. Maybe harder than you have ever done before, to create the kind of stress you will be under in a true attack. It is safe to say most people are not that prepared (set a timer and run a full-force, three minute drill on a heavy bag or BOB dummy... it's a LOT longer than you think!). But if you have the will power and determination to do it, you don't need a school or dojo. The question is, do you have what it takes?
2)The history is interesting, but ... I'm not really counting pages here but it seemed like half the book. I'm more interested in defensive tactics than historical anecdotes or apocryphal tales of Krav Maga saving the day! Give me more techniques and real, detailed, accounts of true incidents! Please forgive the sarcasm it's one of my major faults. I like the book very much. I am doing the workout and... yup I'm sore!
Nothing is perfect when viewed from the jaundiced eye, but if you want a good workout and good info on proper form and some viable techniques for self defense, you cant do too much better as a first step. It won't make you an I.D.F. commando but it's a good starting place to introduce you to a valid , modern system.