Krav Maga Principles and Philosophies

Krav Maga is not a traditional martial art or form of sport fighting like judo, karate, taekwondo, wrestling or the many others available that follow sports-oriented rules of contact combat.

The essence of the Krav system of self defense and fighting is to do whatever you have to do to defend yourself and survive an attack whether it involves one attacker or multiple assailants, unarmed or armed. Unlike traditional martial arts, there truly are no rules when it comes to defending yourself.

Anything goes. 

Most traditional martial arts focus on elements that possess little or no value at all in a real-life hand-to-hand combat scenario. For example, hand positioning, weight distribution, and fighting stance are very important factors in sports-oriented contact combat sports when you compete against an opponent face-to-face in a controlled environment in the ring or on the mat.

But in a real-life situation on the street, you are more than likely to be attacked without any warning and the uncontrolled environment of the streets means the possibility of dangerous weapons - guns, knives and blunt objects - being introduced into a fight.

Most combat sports-oriented martial artists have no experience in defending against weapons in real-life hand-to-hand combat situations.

Krav defensive tactics and techniques involves no rules except that you do whatever you have to do to survive a attack and get home safe.

Yet, even though the Krav hand-to-hand combat system involves lethally effective, no-holds-barred street defense and fighting techniques and tactics, it is not a system without principles and philosophies.

Below are some basic principles and philosophies practiced by every true Kravist.

  • Do not get hurt. Be safe as you can while defending yourself.
  • Learn how to instinctively react from a position of disadvantage.
  • Identify the immediate danger and eliminate it as soon as possible.
  • Use your body's natural instincts and movements to react to a attack.
  • Defend and counterattack at the same time as soon as possible.
  • Deal effectively with secondary dangers such as weapons and multiple attackers that may exist or become introduced into the fight.
  • Attack the most vulnerable areas such as the groin, eyes, throat and other soft spots.
  • Develop awareness for opportunities to use the surrounding environment to your advantage when possible.
  • Always defend and counterattack with a don't quit mindset.
  • Disengage the attacker and flee to safety as soon as the opportunity becomes available.
  • Never over commit and do more than necessary to survive a attack.
  • Keep your ego in check and be modest and do not draw unwanted attention to yourself.

Krav Maga Self Defense and Fitness Books

The original Imi Lichtenfeld self defense and hand-to-hand contact combat classic Krav Maga: How To Defend Yourself Against Armed Attackers.

Krav Legend Darren Levine's classic book for beginners (Yellow Belt and Orange Belt)

Tina Angelotti's comprehensive action guide to Krav combat fitness

Useful Links

Shop The Krav Store

Back to Home

Krav Maga DVDs and Books