Krav Maga vs. Military Martial Arts

Krav Maga has been popularized all over the world as the Military Martial Art of the Israeli military. Practitioners claim to be military instructors who invite people to learn the art from them and become experts and instructors themselves. They claim to teach the secrets of the art as taught to the Israeli military and offer courses in the civilian, military, law enforcement, and VIP protection categories. These claims need to be thoroughly researched and authenticated.

History & Evolution of Military Martial Arts

300px Kravmaga Krav Maga vs. Military Martial Arts

For this, first we will go through a brief history and evolution of Military Martial Arts. Military Martial Arts is sometimes also referred to as “Hand-to-Hand”, or “Unarmed Combat”. By definition, H2H or Unarmed Combat refers to combat without the use of any kind of weapons involved, such as edged weapons (knife) or firearms. Armies all over the world and down the ages have always used some form of physical conditioning to keep their personnel fighting fit and some form of fighting system which could be termed as unarmed combat. They have each had their distinct characteristics, such as the use of bayonet or knife fighting being popular in some cultures.

During World War II, the British compiled a series of techniques by borrowing from Judo and wrestling and called it Unarmed Combat or UAC. In China, William Fairburns devised techniques for fighting with or without weapons and called it the Defendu system of Hand to Hand combat, which had a major influence of Chinese Martial Arts and Judo. This was later adopted and expanded by Col. Rex Applegate of the US army with a major influence of grappling. The American system is also called Combatives. Apart from these, several other countries have their own system of Military Martial Arts such as the Russian Sambo, German Hand to Hand, Israeli Krav Maga. One of the newer arts is the BISON SYSTEM founded by a Dr. Deepak Rao on the basis of experience of training 15,000 personnel of Indian forces in CQB. Later Rao was decorated by the President of India for his research and study in modernization of CQB. He was pipped by the Chief of Army Staff with the rank of Hony Major for his innovative training. There are hundreds of letters from the Indian forces top brass commending the original research and efficiency of the system in bettering the Combat readiness of the Indian Forces. These letters also authenticate the fact that all research and training was conducted under invitation of the respective force HQs, with officers and men alike being part of the course during official training hours in the respective training location.

It is worthwhile studying the BISON SYSTEM as like Krav Maga, it is a modern day art which is designed for use by the military.

Imi Lichtenfeld was a PT (Physical Training) instructor in the Israeli army who had some background in wrestling. During the World War II period, he devised a series of exercises which he taught to the Israeli Defense Forces. This military version was known as the Haganah system. After his retirement he modified the system for civilian use which came to be known as Krav Maga.

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