Krav-Maga old vs new
IMI’s period and the beginning
Haaa the good old days…. when things where much simpler, clear and great.
Back in the days when IMI, the founder of Krav Maga, was alive everyone listened to him. He was the one to approve or disapprove the techniques, change if needed a technique or modify it to perfection, give levels and grades to the other high level instructors around him and so on.
Krav-Maga was in its beginning, it was small, everybody knew everybody, where they came from and what they could or couldn’t do. There was not a lot of money, students, respect to get or whatever to be made.
It was the start! IMI did it for the sake of teaching people how to defend themselves in the street so that they could walk in peace, his philosophy was simple and effective – create a self defense system that will fit everybody that will be effective, strong, to the point, and most important very natural and easy to learn and retain.
At the beginning Krav-Maga was only in Israel, the small pond, and it was developing nice and steady. Most of the people around IMI were more or less in his line of thinking, of teaching people self defense! In the best way possible.
Krav Maga’s breakthrough to the world
Then Krav-Maga got his breakthrough to the world and slowly people started to know Krav-Maga and the instructors from Israel teaching it. Of course ego started to “get in the way” as those who spoke good English got to go more around the world and get more respect and money also.
After IMI passed away, the Krav-Maga association started to break down. That is the few top instructors that were IMI’s top students pulled each in his way to make the world believe that “their” Krav-Maga is the best, most effective and most important the closes to IMI’s Krav-Maga and they are the ones continuing IMI’s legacy!
Changes in the Krav Maga
With that came the changes…. every change you want, from old techniques that IMI didn’t want or changed because he found something better to utter bullshit they invented in the name of IMI.
Every system leader (and I call them system leaders, as the only founder was IMI!) changed Krav-Maga as he saw fit In order to support his leading motto like:
The most authentic,
The best technical instructor,
The family guy,
The closest student of IMI
and whatever, just to make their branch of Krav-Maga bigger than the others (not that I have any problems with that).
But on the way something was lost. The most important thing that was lost is the fact that IMI wanted to bring Krav-Maga to people who needed self defense, who needed something easy, effective and simple to learn. Self defense for real street situations.
It was lost on the shrine of money, glory and ego!
Belt and grades came before efficiency, “simple, digestible techniques” came before understanding principles and solving new problems, fighting spirit and aggression gave its way first to “show off ” technique and secondly to “clean” techniques.
Krav Maga today
In short, I think that in some organizations today the point of Krav-Maga is a more or less lost. They are not teaching people to defend themselves for the street anymore, in that aspect the old Krav-Maga was and is better.
The aim was simple and to the point!
On other things like reach, spread and buzz that Krav-Maga has today is second to none which is good, so more people around the world will be able defend from attacks on the street.
Another thing, and the most important for me is that IMI (so I was told by my instructor) always tried to improve and develop Krav-Maga to higher levels without falling into traps of money, ego and outside influences (like BJJ, MMA, boxing and the rest of them.) Just try to see what is best for the street and keep it like that!
Take whatever is good, make it better in the view of Krav-Maga principles and not change Krav-Maga to suit a will of someone…