Miss Parker wrote:
I’ll speak for krav maga, since there’s a good chance you’ll be training in that style for at least part of your academy training. At a krav school, you’d want to know if the school is affiliated with Krav Maga Worldwide, in Los Angeles. This is the U.S. parent organization for krav, run by Darren Levine, who brought the system to the U.S. after studying under Imi Lichtenfeld, the founder, in Israel.
The school you visit should offer classes for law enforcement and/or military personnel, and those classes should be separate from classes for civilians, though many of the techniques are the same. If a school does not offer this, as mine does, it doesn’t mean the school is not good, but it may not completely serve your needs as a policeman.
Cop classes get into weapons training more quickly than civilian classes do, but your teachers need a special certification to teach it.
Ask to watch a regular level 1 class before signing up. Is it physically challenging? The warmup alone in krav can be exhausting. Are the students expected to give their all, or are they allowed to phone it in? I don’t mean everyone should perform perfectly - I mean everyone should be expected to try hard at all times.
Most level 1 classes will end with “self-defense”, which at this level usually means chokes. The drill at the end should look intense and a little bit scary to someone unused to fighting.
Krav classes are usually overwhelmingly male, but don’t be put off if you see “a bunch of fat moms”. They are there (or should be) to learn to fight, just like the boys are.
Also, google the name of the school you are considering. Sometimes you will find local reviews or testimonials that might help. Feel free to PM me with any questions and good luck at the academy!
Thanks. A quick search online shows that theres really only 1 or 2 Krav maga schools near me. I think my best bet is to set up an appointment to go in and watch and see what I think. If people aren’t sweating and if no one looks like their going to get hurt (to me, a novice) I guess its not a good place to train.
How important is it for these places to be affiliated with the Larger Organizations? From my experience alot of these things are really just gimmicks that make lots of money by “certifying” people but in the end, itreally doesn’t mean much.
I would say that in this case certification is important. I was trying to get into a teacher training this month, but the owner of my school refused to let me go because he said I wasn’t ready. The failure rate for this training is 75% and higher. Before I am allowed to go I must be able to perform every technique to perfection against a larger & stonger opponent, and I must be able to explain every technique verbally, using no gestures at all. My teacher closes his eyes, and if my explanation is unclear to him in any way, I am corrected and have to start over. I have had to change my voice (too soft & girly), my appearance (too feminine), and raise my level of aggression on all techniques. All this and more before I am allowed to apply to train to be a teacher! Perhaps the failure rate is so high because not all school owners are this strict, but in L.A. they will hand you your ass if you come to training unprepared. Although, if your krav school is certified through the Israeli system, that’s good, too.
Of course, even with this affiliation to Worlwide, school quality will vary. I’m lucky to be in a place where my teachers are hardasses who will ride me like a mule if they think I’m slacking off. A lady came in once from another school and asked halfway through class, “If I get tired, can I stop & stand in fighting stance while I catch my breath and rest?” We were all dumbfounded. Once my teacher found his tongue he told her, “Look, you’re an adult, I’m not going to tell you you CAN’T stop. But if you are attacked, your attacker isn’t going to stop because you get tired. You need to fight through it.” The fact that her other school let her just stand there panting in fighting stance was a red flag to me. Go and watch and follow your gut.