My first Krav Maga lesson

Last week, one of the many "To-do Before I Leave" list items finally made it to the top of the list.  Learn self-defence.  Eeeek!

So I went to my first Krav Maga class.  I chose KM over all the various other martial arts and self-defence options out there for the following reasons...

  • Krav Maga offers more realistic and practical approach to self defence than traditional martial arts. It is based on modern world threats, and provides tactical and logical solutions   
  • System is based on simple principles and instinctive movements which promote a high level of proficiency in a relatively short time.
  • Krav Maga uses full simulation exercises to practice various confrontational situations. There will be environmental training exercises such as training in the dark, in the rain, amongst parked cars and in cars.
  • Krav Maga teaches you not only the essential combative tools to handle confrontations such as common chokes, bear hugs, headlocks, attacks on the ground and weapons such as guns, sticks and knives; but also how to use those tools under the stress and shock experienced in a violent encounter. 
List sourced from ...I did a lot of research and this list pretty much summarises why I went for KM.

Now, I am essentially the least violent type of person you could ever meet.  I have never hit anything in my life, never been in anything remotely resembling a physical confrontation and quite honestly if someone were to attack me... my instinctive reaction would be to just stand there in utter shock.

But.  No matter how much I abhor any form of violence, the reality is that I am going out into a very wild world, very much on my own.  And while I am genuinely hopeful that I will never have to use any of the skills I have begun to learn, the other reality is that they could save my life.  

So I dragged my slightly terrified self along to KM.  Now I wouldn't say it was an enjoyable experience, I was partnered with a professional Muay Thai kickboxer who looked so sweet and nice - but she actually nearly killed me.  It was a bit humiliating, but despite my non-violent tendencies I could see that it might eventually become something I at least would find satisfying.

And ohhhhhhhhhh the pain afterwards.  My poor shoulders and back!  Could not move.  For days.  I'm not sure any exercise I have ever done has had so long a recovery period.  And I don't even consider myself that unfit.  I swim, I do yoga, I work out!  I'm writing this 4 days after the class and I still can barely support my body weight on my arms in a pushup position.  Not good.

None of that was enough to deter me though, and I will be going back to class next week as well as putting a lot of practice in at home.  At the very least I know that I'm going to get much better muscle tone, even if I continue to punch like a girl!

If it was just me setting off on my own, there is a good chance I would not have bothered to learn any kind of self-defence.  But add into the mix my van, and my dog, and that was enough to tip me over the edge into really wanting to learn how to defend myself.  I find it a bit paradoxical that the two things that arguably make me safer, as they provide me with both an escape mechanism and a deterrent, provided me with the motivation I needed.  Hurt me?  No problem.  Hurt my dog or take my home?  No way.

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