Krav Maga from Ascension

A Fighting System that Works for All

Krav Maga Classes at Ascension!
Tuesday & Thursday - 6:30pm
Saturday - 10:00am
Kids Krav Maga Class - Saturday - 9:00am

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Until the World War II era, traditional self-defense techniques left soldiers ill prepared to defend against armed attackers. As the fledging Israeli state formed, Imi knew its soldiers needed to learn a type of close-quarters combat that could protect them against firearms, explosives, and other modern threats. Thus, Krav Maga—the world's most effective close-quarters combat system—was born.

As he developed the method, Imi worked tirelessly to ensure Krav Maga success was not dependent on a practitioner's strength or expertise in any one combative including punching, kicking, grappling or throwing. He took all aspects of a fight, both armed and unarmed, into account.

Imi had studied many different fighting styles in his youth including boxing, wrestling, judo, jiujitsu, aikado and fencing. In 1948, Imi melded his knowledge of these various fighting disciplines together and created the complete fighting system now known as Krav Maga.

Merging Self-Defense with Close Quarters Combat

Ascension Fitness Training - Krav MagaUntil the advent of Krav Maga, self-defense and close-quarters combat were thought of as two distinct methodologies. Self-defense usually included situations in which a defender was unaware of an impending attack. In close-quarters-combat, two opponents are aware of the other's respective movements and perceived violent intent.

Krav Maga fuses the two disciplines into one fighting system, giving the trainee the tools needed to defend oneself both when taken by surprise as well as when one is well aware of your opponent. In Krav Maga, you'll learn to quickly react under any situation. A trainee learns to both neutralize an attacker as well as develop a fight strategy that may include defensive posturing, and movements, coordinated attacks and counter-attacks, and overall tactics.

For the next two decades, Imi served as Chief Physical Fitness and Krav Maga Instructor for the Israeli Defense Forces. The vast knowledge acquired through Krav Maga training prompted the military authorities to recognize Krav Maga as a distinct self-defense-close-quarters-combat system. Later, the Israeli Ministry of Education also granted Krav Maga state recognition for training in public schools.

From Soldiers to Civilians

Imi's teaching skills were often sought abroad. His lessons extended beyond just self-defense-close-quarters-combat training to emphasize character and moral training. For example, in 1960, when instructing a Royal Police Guard unit in Ethiopia, Imi realized during a bayonet defensive tactics lesson that several trainees had attempted not to learn with him, but to actually bayonet him. At the next training session, Imi rectified this uncooperative attitude by sprawling his attacker with a full force kick, halting any further "tests."

This incident prompted Imi to reinforce proper student attitude: "be humble." Proving oneself is not necessary. Humility and respect, Imi emphasized, prevents injury, losing face, or turning away from Krav Maga or any other demanding pursuit as a result of frustration. In 1964, after retiring as Chief Instructor, Imi began to adapt his system for use in the civilian world.

In 1970, he began teaching a state recognized Krav Maga instructor's course. He encouraged the instructors to join military, security, and police units or to establish themselves as professional instructors within the civilian community.

Imi focused both on teaching professionals (law enforcement, executive protection and security specialists) and adapting his system to provide ordinary civilians - men, women, boys and girls - with solutions to avoid and/or end a violent encounter. In 1978, Imi, along with his senior students including Mr. Avi Moyal (whom he appointed as the Chairman) established the Ha Agudah L'Krav Maga Yisraeli or the Israeli Krav Maga Association (IKMA) in his hometown, Netanya, to promote Krav Maga throughout Israel.

Even during his last years, Imi continued to personally supervise the training of those who have attained high ranks in Krav Maga, and to spend time with the instructors in Israel and abroad.

As time passed, Imi recognized the need for an organization whose primary focus was spreading Krav Maga not primarily in Israel but around the globe and so, at his direction and with his blessing, the International Krav Maga Federation was established. And now, once again, Mr. Avi Moyal is at the helm as the Chairman continuing to steer the IKMF in the original vision and direction of Emerich "Imi" Lichtenfeld (Sde-Or).

On January 9th, 1998, early in the morning, Emerich "Imi" Lichtenfeld (Sde-Or) passed away just 5 hours after arriving at the hospital but his legacy and vision live on strong....

IKMF Krav Maga

What is Krav Maga?

Ascension Fitness Training - Krav MagaSelf-Defense for REAL LIFE! Krav-Maga originated in Israel under battle field conditions and adapted very efficiently to real life on the streets! It is based on natural reactions to events so it is easy to learn AND easy to remember! We have trained people in Krav Maga all over the world thus expanding and continuing its founder's (Imi Lichtenfield) philosophy that nobody should have to live in fear but instead, one should train in Krav Maga so that "one may walk in peace!"

How much are classes? How long are classes?

These answers vary per club. Go to the 'Locations' tab and find one near you!

How long will it take to become proficient? (How long will it take me to get to the next level?)

In the beginning of your training, you learn the basics which build the foundation for everything else. The first level takes 3-6 months. Each level after that is about 5-6 months, depending on your level of mastery. The goal of Krav-Maga is not becoming a Master; the goal is learning to save your life. You will most likely leave the first class with something that could save your life!

I have years of martial arts experience. Can I join the advanced class?

Everyone starts at the beginning. Due to the unique nature of KM, techniques that you have known for years may be slightly different. Even a punch is very specific to KM. Starting at the beginning will build that strong foundation that will enable you to advance through the system knowing that you are learning and absorbing what is being taught.

Do you use a belt system?

No, we use a patch system. At every test, upon passing, you will receive a patch for the level that you test and a diploma. Your patch is worn on your training pants to signify where you are in your training. There are 18 levels in KM: Practitioner 1-5, Graduate 1-5, Expert 1-5 and Master 1-3.

Do we wear a Gi?

No, but official KM pants and shirt are required before your first test.

Am I too old?

Krav-Maga is for people 4-99! You are never too old to learn to defend yourself.

*not all clubs offer Kids Krav-Maga

I'm overweight. Can I do it?

Ascension Fitness Training - Krav MagaWhile Krav-Maga is definitely a good work-out, don't let that intimidate you! All of the exercises that we do in class are modifiable. If push-ups are too much, drop to your knees. If running hurts your knees, walk (fast). Let your instructor know of your perceived limitations, and they will offer you modifications. Krav-Maga WILL help you get in great physical and cardio shape!

I have old injuries. Is it safe?

Modify what you do. Listen to your body. If it hurts to do something (and not just a 'hey my muscles haven't done that in a while' kind of hurt) then alter what you're doing. We want to teach you how to defend yourself, but not at the expense of injury. And of course, as with all vigorous activity, you should check with your medical provider before beginning.

I have a gun. Why do I need KM?

Krav-Maga is not a replacement for a firearm; it is a supplement. What if you can't draw? The attack is too close? Your gun gets jammed? Someone takes it away? With Krav Maga, you become the weapon. Don't limit yourself and your chances of survival by relying solely on a gun.

I'm deaf/blind.

With impairments such as these, it is very important that you learn how to protect yourself. A lot of the techniques come from feeling the attack. Chokes, bear hugs, some knife/gun threats...all of these and more are eventually trained with your eyes closed so that you have to feel the attack. Your body becomes increasingly aware of what is touching it and what's happening to it.

I'm too skinny

All the more reason to learn how to defend yourself! If you are a little person, you are a BIG target. Attackers are more likely to choose someone they are certain they can overpower. Show them that you are not as helpless as they may think!

Do you train terrorists?

NO! We are the "good guys" teaching good people how to walk in peace. This system of defensive tactics is from Israel, one of the most peaceful nations and one of our strongest allies, but also the one that has to fight to secure their land. They know how to defend themselves, and they have passed that knowledge to us.