Think Krav Maga can’t save your life?
Good, but make your right hand into a fist and thrust it over your partner’s opposite shoulder.
The last several days have seen a wave of stabbing attacks throughout Israel. Amid the ongoing wave of terror, Israelis are seizing on the means to protect themselves.
“You can tell that people are feeling stressed,” said Daniel. “They want a tool to defend themselves if they get attacked.”
On Israel Radio Friday morning, another shopkeeper reported selling out his entire stock of pepper sprayin the past two days. “It’s legal,” he said, “and people feel they need protection.”
On Wednesday evening, Josh Carr, an immigrant from South Africa and former commander at the Israel Defense Forces’ Krav Maga instructor’s school, posted the following message in the “Secret Tel Aviv” Facebook group, which caters to new immigrants and tourists:
“Dear friends, (in Israel) due to the current situation, I am offering a free self-defense course. The course will focus mainly on knife defense but will include basic fighting skills and how to react in an emergency situation. This course will not turn you into a superhero, however, it could save your life or the life of someone else.”
Carr has received over 1,000 responses — and counting. “It was overwhelming. I didn’t expect it,” he said.
At first, Carr was planning to teach a few people self-defense techniques in a park. But now that so many people are interested, he hopes to hold events in several cities, including Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and possibly Beersheba, where he will instruct as many people as he can.
“I want to give people a basic level of self-defense, to learn how to use your body as a weapon, and I want to teach a few techniques for knife defense,” he said.
Oren Mellul, who teaches a twice-weekly Krav Maga class in central Tel Aviv has also seen an upsurge in interest.
“In a normal week I usually have two new students. In the last ten days I’ve had 25-30 new people sign up,” he said.
On Friday morning, Mellul devoted his beginner’s class entirely to knife defense.
Better late than never, but I’m glad for every class and seminar I’ve taken on knife defense. And even then, knife scares me witless.
All the self-defense experts agree that awareness of your surroundings is the first level or protection.
PS: And then there’s this tip for another common terrorist attack:
Carr also said that awareness is key, not just for a knife attack, but also car rammings.
“If you do see a car coming towards you, try to put a barrier between yourself and the vehicle, like a telephone pole, tree or parked car,” he said.
“That’s your first level of protection. But if it’s too late — and this requires a high level of training, you should jump as high as you can in the air. If the car hits you in the air, you’ll still be injured but there is much less chance of dying.”
I’ve actually wondered about that myself, and came to the same conclusion. I’m not sure how they conducted the clinical trials to prove it, but it’s nice to have your instincts vindicated.