Thursday, 18 July 2013


One of the first lessons you are meant to learn in Krav Maga is using a common object.  Whenever you are faced with aggression that is becoming physical you use a common object as a force multiplier.  This is often one of the most misunderstood and under taught parts of the Krav Maga syllabus as it is often not really covered as part of the instructors course.  Luckily a lot of my training is via Mark Davies and Kelly Worden in the Filipino arts and as a result we are head and shoulders above the rest when it comes to common object work.  Now if you are trying to imagine what this is, think about when Jason Bourne uses a pen to get stuck in with an aggressor in the first Bourne movie.  

Think about how you use your hammer strikes and now put a pen in your hand and have your thumb cap the end of it so if you strike you don’t lose it.  Now consider the power in your hammer strike and take it all out. If you go full force you are going to stab a pen into someone and lose it. You don’t want that as you have to consider multiple attackers. Instead think about a fast pecking action and consider the points of contact.  

Now if anyone then says to you I can't imagine ever using a weapon against someone, you need to make things clear.  It's not really a weapon, you are using an object you have to hand to further your chances of survival.  People who want to do you harm will not think twice about leaving you in a broken mess on the ground and kicking you around the street like a coke can.  Read articles in the newspaper and see what a horrible world we live in. Now that is what it is going to be like - it won't be like it is in most movies. It will be horrid and brutal and over quickly if you are lucky. If someone still can't get over the idea, give them a pad and have them use this as a shield.  Now all of a sudden it's not a weapon in their mind.  Have them shield the attack to start with.  Then have them add in counter strikes with hands and feet as appropriate. Then have them use the shield to strike the attacker.  Now you are on your way to making them more combat effective. 

Look around you now and try and identify some objects you could use to defend yourself.  

Keep in mind that in the UK you cannot legally carry anything you intend to use to defend yourself, as that would be classed as a weapon.  However, picture this scenario: 

You are walking home one evening and a guy bumps into you.  You apologise and keep walking.  He doesn’t accept it and starts the verbal dance with you. You stop and calmly try and further deescalate the situation.   You kneel down quickly and tie your lace as you might be running. His mates start egging him on, and now you understand the chances of talking this one down are getting less and less.  You count - there are four people altogether and you can't run. You are on a big stretch of road with no houses and no traffic.  You keep trying your best to talk this down but it's pointless and you know it's coming.  You start making yourself look more helpless and small as you want him to feel powerful so he drops his guard. He knows you are nothing and you're in fear – you should be: there are four of them.  You’ve trained for this though and this is as real as it gets.  He pushes you once.  You ask him to stop and he just pushes you again.  What he didn’t realise was that when you tied your lace you picked up a big stone that was on the path. Its dark, he didn’t notice and its been in your hand clenched at your side. You now understand that your only chance in a multiple attack situation is pre-emptive action.  This time when he comes towards you to push you you slam the rock into his cheek bone shattering his eye orbital.  His hands immediately cover the area so you oblique kick down on his knees and have him screaming and writhing on the ground. His mates quickly panic as you scream and tell them to back off.  They move towards you, so you again stamp and put pressure on the damaged limb of the guy on the ground.  You scream again to back off or you will hurt him more.  His screams are starting to drown you out.  They don’t know what to do in the confusion.  You do though. You want to move out of there quickly and safely.  One last stamp on his leg and its time for you to run.  You need to put all that physical training into action and get as far from there as possible.  His friends are more concerned with looking after their friend than following you.  You get home safely and then report the incident to the police.  

Now this is how that could have gone down.  The guy in question didn’t have a mobile phone so he could run and call the police.  He had no choice but to put that training into action.  He hates those people for forcing him to have to hurt another person but he had no choice as he couldn’t be sure that he wouldn’t be left for dead out there in a crumpled mess with no chance of anyone there to help him.  

Just accept it for what it is - a way to understand the use of common objects. 

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