Krav Maga


Ep 6: Self Defense Law - Krav Maga Podcast

Todays podcast is about Self Defense Laws
It’s important that you research and find what laws govern your country and state. I’m my experience in different counties is that they widely differ in self defense. Once, I was in a place that required you by law to flee the situation and not fight back. Basically it was illegal to defend yourself. In another country I visited recently, if the threat had a 9 cal bullet that he was shooting you with, you could not have a higher caliber gun then the threat. Pretty crazy!
Each states varies in some aspects of the law of self defense so do your self a favor and know your states laws. Simply search your state + Self defense laws and you should be able to find what you need.
In the USA, we have a basic right to defend ourselves and others if it’s lawful..
What is Lawful?
California self-defense law requires the following “elements” of the defense to be true:
  1. When you committed your crime, you reasonably believed that you were in imminent danger of being killed, seriously injured, or unlawfully touched;
    1. Some one coming at you with a knife is “imminent”.
    2. Some one saying that someday they will get you and you decide to be preemptive and kill them, that is not imminent.
  2. Reasonably believed that you needed to use force to prevent that from happening, and
    1. The force has to be proportional to the threat...
      1. If some one punches you, you generally cannot shot them.
      2. BUT if some one is punching you to the ground repeatedly and are about to cause you to die or major harm, it may be proportional to use a gun. As long as you can convince the prosecutor that the use of force was reasonable.
  3. Used no more force than was necessary to prevent that from happening.
    1. STOP the attack. Go no further. If you hit the person and they are on the ground crying san begging you to stop. STOP. Once the threat is eliminated  you no longer can lawfully attack them.
The threat (person about to harm you) must show three things; Intent, Means, and Opportunity

Intent: You must be able to explain how you knew the threat was intending to harm you. For example, a threat running at you yelling "I’m going to kill you!" or more subtle ways of eyes glazing over, reaching into his pocket walking towards you fast. No matter what the situation, you need to be able to articulate HOW you knew he was going to hurt you.

Means: They must have the means to harm you. For example, if a threat yells I’m going to shoot you! but is wearing a bathing suit at the beach then they don’t actually have the means to carry out the intent. 

Opportunity: The threat must be able to reach you with the means. If they are locked up in jail with a knife want to kill you, they still don’t have the opportunity because they are locked up.
  1. You can use the same force and laws of self defense to defend others.
  2. We are a stand your ground state. Under CA Law there is no law saying you must retreat even if you have an opportunity to do so. Not all states are stand your ground states. 

You must understand that if you did hit some one on the head with a brick, you committed assault with a deadly weapon. There’s no denying that… Your job now will be to prove that it was justified, because…… You must prove that you had NO CHIOCE. Prove it. Beyond reasonable doubt. You will be found Guilty or Not Guilty. Guilty beyond reasonable doubt or not guilty because some doubt was achieved.
Reasonable belief in threat
In order to plead self-defense successfully, you must have had an honest and reasonable belief that you faced imminent harm and needed to use force to defend yourself. 13 It does not matter whether that belief was correct or not, as long as it was reasonable.
In deciding whether or not your belief was reasonable, the jury is supposed to use what is called an objective standard. This means that they are supposed to ask themselves whether a reasonable person in your shoes would have believed they were in danger – not whether you personally believed you were in danger.

Now, that was criminal law. Just because you weren’t found guilty of harming the threat in a criminal case, the threat can sue you in a civil case for damages. In this suite, the plaintiff will show tangible evidence that they were harmed (injuries, medical bills, time off work, etc). If the jury decides that you didn’t absolutely HAVE to cause those injuries you may have to pay punitive damages. The goal here is to prove to the jury that the treat left you NO choice  and that the harm he received was because of his actions.   These cases guilty or not, are very expensive. Self Defense Law is a specialty and make a living off these cases. Something to consider is to find a good attorney to have on retainer. It’s always good to have some one to call if/when something happens.

Ep 5: What is more dangerous, gun or a knife? - Krav Maga Podcast

This is a semi loaded question. Obviously, if there is gun to your head or a knife to your throat it doesn’t matter which is more dangerous at that moment. All that matters is that you survive no matter what. 

But if we decided to break down knife vs gun threats, or attacks we can really see deep inside the problem and discuss certain theories.

Let’s start with the pistol and lets not talk about rifles at the moment sense they are long range and not typically close hand to hand range like a knife or even a pistol are.

Guns are amazing tools. They allow you to shoot a target at a close, medium, and semi far distance. They don’t need a lot of skill to be fired or used as a tool of intimidation.

Knifes on the other hand you must be close. But knifes are amazing weapons to because they never jam. They never need to reloaded. They are easily concealed. And they a cheap and easily to get. 

Pistols are “less” personal as a knife is a very personal attack. What I mean is, you have to be up close to stab some one with a knife. You have to manually push a knife into someone while they are screaming in your ear and pull the knife out and do it again. A gun you press a trigger. I’m not saying it’s easy to press the trigger...

This is my opinion and the opinion of some o my colleges, students, and LE officer I work with and you may disagree and that’s fine.

But I would rather have a gun to my hear then a knife to my throat, any day.

I am competent at defending both of them pretty equally. But I would rather NOT have the person who is mentally willing/able to jam a knife into my body repeatedly in front of me and the person who would take a more impersonal approach of a pistol.

When I redirect a pistol, the pistol will MOST likely be jammed. Especially if a shot goes off. I make sure to keep the muzzle pointed away from me while establishing control and all is good (kind of). 

When I redirect a knife, there is no “dead” knife. It’s always “hot” or active. Who knows how the struggle will go… 

But stil, the person who hold a knife and if willing to use it is, in my opinion, more dangerous then the person holding a gun.

Now, obviously there are a lot of situation and aspects we can look into to debate this but I’m trying to make this as general as I can for the sake of comparison. Can a knife attacker take out a crowd of people as easily as a gunman? Probably not. So in that sense, a gun may be more dangerous. And we can argue the things all day long. But the main factor was to bring up the phycology of the person who is attacking and I think we have.

Now, to go even more in depth. What is more dangerous, the knife, the gun, or the person?

I would argue strongly that it’s the person. Let’s refer to the attacker as the “computer” and the weapon as a program or app. 

If we take out the computer, we take out the weapons as well. A knife laying on the ground isn’t dangerous. at all. zero. Knifes cannot, stand up, run at you, and dive into your stomach by them selves. So therefore, knives (or guns) are NOT dangerous. It’s the person who is using them.

So, here’s my point. Take out the computer.

Don’t put 100% of your focus on the weapon. Now, obviously, not getting shot or stabbed is a great bonus. But if like many Martial Arts, you only concentrate on the weapon and grab on, while flipping the attacker in the air, and doing a spin while disarming the attacker, you are going to fail. However, you you focus on attacking the attacker, you will survive. You may sustain injuries. But you have a much higher chance of survival. 

Put it this way… If a had someone come to me right now and say, “I’m going to be attacked today by a knife welder and I only have 10 minutes to train with you!!!”

If I couldn’t give him a gun… or a knife.. or police backup or anything else I would teach him violence of action and the idea of “turing off the computer”. There’s no way he would be able to learn and be proficient and knife disarms and techniques in that short amount of time - he would just focus on the knife to much and not the computer that holding the knife. If he went it with 100% sticking power to the throat, knees, or groin, he will turn off the computer. May get cut a couple of times, but he his chances of serving and winning that fight are much higher... Now if I taught him him a knife take away technique, how do you think he would do? . 

I hope this little insight was thought provoking and useful to spark some questions and conversation. 

Fallow us on
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Ep 4: Fighting Back (and why we should) - Krav Maga Podcast

The Truth about fighting Back
For more go to

Is resistance an effective strategy for preventing crime?


Almost all studies show that resistance is successful in preventing the completion of a personal crime.  This holds true in rape, robbery, and assault (23).  Resistance is an especially effective tactic in preventing most rapes.  A woman who physically resists a rapist doubles her chance of escaping rape (24). and that even includes NOT having proper training.
Woman with self defense training have outstanding odds. In fact, 
 sociologist Jocelyn Hollander did a study and           looks at the outcomes for 117 college students who received this self-defense training versus a control group of 169 students who did not. Of those, seventy-five from the first group and 108 from the second agreed to take part in a follow-up survey or interview.
The results are clear: a much lower percentage of the women who took the self-defense class reported incidents of unwanted sexual contact than the women who did not take the class
These are some statistical percentages of victim’s success in avoiding rape during an attack with different methods.


– Victims crying or pleading were raped 96% of the time

– Victims who loudly screamed were raped between 44% and 50% of the time

– Victims who ran were raped 15% of the time

– Victims who forcefully resisted (without a weapon) were raped 14% of the time

– Women who resisted with knives or guns were raped less than 1% of the time

Now, lets talk about if the attacker has a firearm.

Most criminals don’t have very reliable high end guns. Most don’t even have the money to buy ammo for it as they would rather buy drugs with the money they are trying to steel from you then ammunition.
It’s even known that if a criminal steels or acquires a high end fire arm they would rather sell it for the money then use it.

The article states that thirty percent of robberies are committed with unloaded guns.  An additional ten to fifteen percent of the firearms used in crimes are replica, toy, or BB guns (3).  That means that almost half of the guns used in crimes are unloaded or fake! They also show that 41% of the guns seized by the police from criminals don’t even work or are fakes!

Guns are extremely load and even drugged up criminals know that the sound of a shot is an easy way to get noticed. Most criminals are reluctant to fire the weapon as only 4.6% of victims in a violent crime with a firearm were actually shot.

Knives are a different story. They are quiet and easy to use, cheap, no reloading or ammo and extremely dangerous.
Knifes were used to cut or stab victims 12.7% of violent crimes.

If you are shot the studies show that 92% of gunshot victims are discharged from the hospital alive. 47% of them are discharged the same day. 

Overall, firearms assaults have a lethality rate of 5.4%.  Knife assaults kill victims in 1.1% of cases.  These statistics can be compared with a .06% lethality rate for assaults using bodily weapons (hands, feet, etc) (11).

1)      U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics. “Weapon Use and Violent Crime”, September 2003..  NCJ 194820.

2)      Wright, Richard T, and Decker, Scott H. Armed Robbers in Action. Northeast University Press.  1997.  Pg. 97.

3)      Hockheim, Hock, Unarmed Versus The Knife.  Lauric Press.  2001.

4)      U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics. “Weapon Use and Violent Crime”, September 2003.  NCJ 194820.

5)      U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics. “Weapon Use and Violent Crime”, September 2003..  NCJ 194820.

6)      U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics. “Weapon Use and Violent Crime”, September 2003..  NCJ 194820.

7)      Wright, James D. and Rossi, Peter H. Armed and Considered Dangerous, Aldine de Gruyter, 1986.

8)      U.S Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics.  “Firearm Injury and Death from Crime, 1993-1997”.  November 2001.  NCJ 182993.

9)      U.S Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics.  “Firearm Use by Offenders”.  October 2000.  NCJ 189369.

10)  U.S Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics.  “Firearm Injury and Death from Crime, 1993-1997”.  November 2001.  NCJ 182993

11)  Harris, Thomas, Fisher, and Hirsh. “Murder and Medicine: The Lethality of Criminal Assault 1960-1999”. 2001.

12)  U.S Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, ““Criminal Victimization in the United States, 1999 Statistical Tables”, NCJ 184938, Table 68.

13)  Lott, John R.  More Guns Less Crime.  University of Chicago Press.  2000.  Pp 3-4.

14)  Caparatta, Paul.  Merchants at War.  Varro Press.  1998.  Pp. 24-25.

15)  Campbell, Anne.  Men, Women, and Aggression.  Basic Books.  1993.  Pg. 102.

16)  U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics. “Weapon Use and Violent Crime”, September 2003.  NCJ 194820.

17)  Bachman, Saltzman, Thompson, and Carmody, “Disentangling the Effects of Self-Protective Behaviors on the Risk of Injury in Assaults Against Women”.  Journal of Quantitative Criminology, Vol. 18, No 2, June 2002.

18)  Ghiglieri, Michael P.  The Dark Side of Man.  Perseus Books.  1999.

19)  Bachman, Saltzman, Thompson, and Carmody, “Disentangling the Effects of Self-Protective Behaviors on the Risk of Injury in Assaults Against Women”.  Journal of Quantitative Criminology, Vol. 18, No 2, June 2002

20)  Michaud and Hazelwood.  The Evil That Men Do.  St. Martins True Crime.  1999.

21)  Siegel, Sorenson, Golding, Burnham, and Stein.  “Resistance to Sexual Assault: Who Resists and What Happens?”  American Journal of Public Health, Vol. 79, No. 1, January 1989.

22)  Kleck and Sayles.  “Rape and Resistance” Social Problems.  Vol. 37.  No. 2. 1990.

23)  Bachman, Saltzman, Thompson, and Carmody, “Disentangling the Effects of Self-Protective Behaviors on the Risk of Injury in Assaults Against Women”.  Journal of Quantitative Criminology, Vol. 18, No 2, June 2002

24)  Ghiglieri, Michael P.  The Dark Side of Man.  Perseus Books.  1999

25)  U.S Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, “Criminal Victimization in the United States, 1999 Statistical Tables”, NCJ 184938, Table 72.

26) Katz, Jack.  Seductions of Crime. 1988.  Page 180.

27) Kane and Wilder.  The Little Black Book of Violence.  YMAA Publication Center. 2009.  Page 217.


Ep 3: Freezing in a Fight - Krav Maga Podcast

Freezing in a fight is one of the biggest fears I find in myself and my students. We train hard to try and eliminate the fear of freezing but when it boils down to it, we can’t eliminate freeze but we can decrease it’s power over us with proper training, understanding, and knowledge of this topic.

Let’s cover the different types of freezes there are according to Rory Miller in “Facing Violence”.

Bye the way, I did not invent these ideas. This is my interpretation, research, and takeaway from Rory Miller’s Facing Violence and my own experiences.

Types of Freezes

Tactical Freeze.
This is when you freeze on purpose to not expose yourself (you freeze to not be noticed) or to gather more information (you feel something is wrong so you freeze to gather information to find the problem.

Also a strategic way to use this freeze is while in a situation where you freeze (or stop interacting) with the threat to let them cool down. But not  if the fight has already started. This is more of a pre fight strategy. 

You must be aware of this freeze and be able to snap out of it at anytime when the situation starts to progress or change.  For example, if you freeze to be unnoticed (which is very instinctual, just look at animals when they are “caught” in the act of seeking up on you during play, they freeze hoping you don’t notice.), you must be able to recognise when situation has changed so that you get out of the freeze. Sometimes we don’t know if we are in this freeze on purpose or if our body is doing it automatically.

Physiological Freeze.
This is the time when your body is switching form passive mode to fight mode. Some people transition faster then others, usually depends on training and previous encounters. This is why when we train we train techniques and counter simultaneously or near simultaneous to shorten time to transition to fight mode. It is important to turn into the fighter as soon as possible. 

Non-Cognitave Metal Freeze.
This is the freeze where you think you know what to do or what is going on and it suddenly changes. For example, you're walking someone you know out of a heated argument and you suddenly you find a knife in your stomach with the attacker repeatedly stabbing you. This freeze is similar to you needing to switch gears again and into the fighter. The situation is not what we were expecting. We were expecting to walk out calmly when instead we are fighting for our life. This is a tough freeze to get out of but can be done. Miller says from his studies it usually takes two actions to snap out of the freeze. Any actions that you purposely do can regain your mental function and enable you to break the freeze. 

Cognitive Freeze.
Too many attacks happening at once. Our brain is trying to analyse each swing coming at us and decide an appropriate response. But if what we are analysing is disrupted by another attack we can’t finish the analysis and continue to try to analyse what is happening. Causing us to freeze. Too many things happening at once and we can’t figure out what’s happening causing a sensory overload. It’s our thought process that is causing us to freeze. Sometimes, asking ourselves what is happening or why is it happening is another cause of this freeze. This is a critical time to try and STOP your thoughts and instead ACT. Once you are acting, then you can think, but every second spent thinking about what is happening or why it’s happening is allowing more damage to ensue on yourself. Sometimes, a problems occur with MA training. If a fight isn’t going exactly how we trained it to go, our brains automatically try to make sense of what is happening, causing us to freeze. One way we try to solve this is by having the attacker always act differently when you are defending in training, expanding the possible scenarios and not creating a habit.

Social Cognitive Freeze.
I can see this being a very common freeze among typical people. We are raised and conditioned with rules and laws of violence. We get punished when we hit a kid at school. We get penalised when we hurt someone in a sport. We are are told in school we can’t hit first. We get arrested if we hurt someone else. We are raised and condition NOT to cause harm to anyone.
So when a violent attacker that isn’t bound by these rules confronts us, we freeze because we are not used to this way of thinking. We aren’t able to “switch” as fast as we’d like to combat warrior mode because frankly, we aren’t. We are not raised or conditioned that way. In the old days kids were raised and hunters and warriors to keep the tribe alive. Now, we are raised to follow the rules and make money to provide for our family - typically with out violence.

Also, a lack of confidence is associated with this freeze. Any doubt we have in our training gets magnified. When we think it’s not going to work or that you can’t pull it off, your fate is already decided. Now confidence isn’t that same as ability. Some people may have the confidence and not have the ability, not helping the situation any better. The goal is to instil confidence in what we do allowing the ability to come with training. 

Getting un Frozen.
Freezing is natural and will happen to all of us if we are caught off guard. We will mostly likely experience freezing in a sudden and expected violent enchant. Usually if people are arguing and squaring up to fight, freezing is a lot less common because it’s not sudden and altering your state of mind.

Rory Miller explains these simple steps to get out of the freeze. 

Step 1: Know you are frozen
Step 2: Make yourself do something
Step 3: Repeat Step 

Much easier said then done. But now that we understand the freeze better, we will be much better at lessoning the time the freeze has on us.

Good luck with your training!

Book recommendation in this Podcast: FACING VIOLENCE 

Ep 2: We Should Start Self Defense Training at an Early Age - Krav Maga Podcast

If I were the president of the United States my first order of business would be to start a mandatory self-defense policy at age 12. In the beginning, people would probably oppose this idea and want to rebel against it. But the long term the results would be astounding. Imagine the statistical anomaly that would happen if every kid learned self-defense techniques and concepts at the early age of 12. Did you know that 1 in 3 females are estimated to be attacked or molested in some way? Mostly this occurs between the ages of 12-17. That is terrible and shocking thing to consider. What do you think the number would be if every child had the self-confidence, knowledge, and understanding of self-defense, and knew how to stand up for themselves? I think that the statistics would change dramatically.

Next, let’s talk about predators and prey. Most attacks on adults (and kids) are premeditated. Attackers scope out the “kill” and plan their attack. They look for the odd person out of the herd. The person that is timid, shy, and weak. The person who doesn’t make eye contact and who would never know they are coming. The person who wouldn’t put up a good fight. Is this you? Training in self-defense fighting not only teaches you how to carry yourself but it gives you confidence that you would never get from anything else. Knowing that you CAN fight back and have options would make you walk a little different, wouldn’t you say? Knowing that you can fight 3 people at once, defend knife stabs, gun threats and tackles will undoubtedly make stand taller. You would make more eye contact, abolish your timidness and gain massive mental and physical strength.

In Israel, every citizen, man or woman, must serve in the army. Something interesting shows when we compare their crime rates and statistics with ours.

The crime rate in Tel Aviv, Israel (the Los Angeles/Orange County of Israel) is 33.56% when in Los Angeles it’s 51.96%. And Israel scores a higher safety scale of 66.44 when LA gets a 48.04 in safety.

Interesting? Every woman and man has had fight training to some extent and can fight back. This makes the attacker’s odds a little lower. Just knowing that anyone who gets attacked knows how to fight back automatically decreases the crime rate. In fact, most of the crime happens to tourists. Why? Because THEY DON’T TRAIN.

So yes, I believe if we were able to get every person into some sort of self-defense training, we would dramatically decrease child molestation and adult crimes in the USA. It could be as easy as making it part of the PE class requirements in middle school and it has the potential to help many young people gain the skills they need to stay safe, right through to adulthood.


Ep 1: Mental Training - Shortening Reaction Time - Krav Maga Podcast

Krav Maga XD in Costa Mesa's Joey Karam is podcasting on the subject of Mental Training.

Title: Mental Training and Negative Visualization- Shortening Reaction Time—Episode 001

Date- May 24, 2015

You may not have the time every day to physically train, but you do have the time every day to mentally train. 

It is essential to master the way we think and prepare for attacks. If we are not mentally prepared, it is going to be difficult to perform well when being
attacked no matter your level of physical skills.

HOW do we mentally train?

We call it shortening freeze time. The Stoics called it Negative Visualization.

It is a very good drill to perform because it allows you to anticipate mentally the steps you need to be successful in ANY given situation. You can use it
in physical training, in your work life, in your relationships….

Freeze Time-the time you are literally “frozen” in a situation without knowing what to do.

Basically, what you are doing is taking any given situation and imagining it from absolute worst- case scenario to absolute best-case scenario outcomes.
The more that you visualize and mentally prepare yourself, the better composed you will be when you encounter the actual situation.

Example Drill:

Imagine you are in a doctor’s office and are the farthest person from the exit. There are people between you and the exit. A knife-wielding crazy person
comes in off the street and is going to attack and kill everyone.

Through several steps, your worst-case scenario starts with the criminal killing everyone, including yourself.

In each successive reiteration, you imagine then that you fight him but he still kills you, then you fight him and he runs away but kills everyone else,
then you fight him and keep him from killing 2 people but you’re still injured, then you fight him and you save everyone but you’re still injured, then you
fight him as soon as he walks in, save everyone and you’re on the news as a hero. This last one is your best-case scenario.

You can break this down further into tinier and tinier steps and really drill down to mentally prepare yourself for every step you would need to take to
result in the best case outcome.

Recommended Frequency:

As often as you can. You can do this silently in your head at any time, such as in the grocery store line, while waiting on hold, while walking your
dogs, etc.

Recommended Reading:
A Guide to the Good Life-The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy (Wm. B. Irvine)

Recommended Reading in this show: A Guide to the Good Life-The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy (Wm. B. Irvine)

People Mentioned in the show: Eyal Yanilov