Krav Maga is the official defensive tactics system of the Israeli military & security services. It originated in the 1940’s from the then fledging Israel Defence Forces’ need for a formalised method of hand to hand combat.
Krav Maga (Contact Combat) was developed by Imi Lichtenfeld, the first defensive tactics instructor for the IDF and security services in the field. In the 1960’s, the ministry of education began teaching a civilian version of Krav Maga in schools. The civilian form of the system has since migrated to all five continents, alongside the military and security syllabus, which is taught to police and military units world-wide.
Krav Maga doesn’t specialise in standing- versus- groundwork, striking-versus- locking/ throwing, empty hand-versus- weapons, etc. Instead it has the core elements of all these fighting methods incorporated into it, as the emphasis of Krav Maga is on pragmatic self-defence for the civilian and efficient defensive tactics for security and military professionals. So, apart from a core of empty-hand striking, grappling and ground-work it places heavy emphasis on defending against weapon threats and attacks, against oneself or a third party (for VIP Protection or hostage situations). These are trained in any position-front, side and rear – as well as standing, seated and grounded, and in all those contexts against multiple opponents.
Krav Maga students train in using common, everyday objects as weapons, such as folders, chairs backpacks, garden implements, coffee mugs, pens, etc.. These are classified into categories such as shield objects, small objects to distract, flexible, stick type, etc. and the tactics and use of these types of objects in these categories is taught as part of the syllabus. Krav Maga teaches multiple- opponent defence as part of its syllabus, emphasises environmental training (field training) and contains many exercises and drills to put students under physical and psychological stress in order to acclimatise the student to the stresses of street self-defence.