web analytics
April 20, 2014 / 20 Nisan, 5774
At a Glance
News & Views
Sponsored Post
Spa 1.2 Combining Modern Living in Traditional Jerusalem

A unique and prestigious residential project in now being built in Mekor Haim Street in Jerusalem.



Aching to Exercise: a Krav Maga Revolution

“A woman who doesn’t have much body weight will need a different method to break free from a man who has grabbed her.”
YEH_0261

Share Button

Thwack! Across the room, a female soldier is thrown to the hardwood floor by a much larger male soldier. She races up and readies herself before her opponent. Now he has the knife and it’s her turn. He lunges, and she parries the knife. In a flash, she’s now holding the weapon.

2nd Lt. Edi Halevi stands at the entrance to the gymnasium, her arms crossed, a look of satisfaction on her face. She’s responsible for the fitness of the mixed-gender infantry battalion, Caracal. Fresh off six months of active duty on the Egyptian border, Caracal is now participating in a three-day-long sports fair. Cycling, swimming – and for the first time for regular infantry – Krav Maga, are just some of the special exercises these soldiers took part in.

Behind the officer, male and female soldiers practice how to defend against an attacker with a knife. These aren’t the types of drills they are used to. Usually they wake well before sunrise, strap on large backpacks, combat vests and march with their rifles slung over their shoulders. Or maybe after a 16 hour day, they take part in a small exercise before bedtime. Today, they are dressed in civilian clothes, happily welcoming the opportunity to work out without being wrung out.

A Demonstration

Outside, the sun blazes in the Negev desert and another group of soldiers stands in a line on a small soccer field. They are learning how to defend against an attack from behind.

“A volunteer?” the instructor asks, a sly look on his face. No hands rush to the air. “Well?” the instructor asks, tapping his foot. A female soldier wearing white leggings, a black t-shirt and a baseball cap steps forward.

“Once I have your wrist, you’ll need to go to the ground on your stomach,” the instructor says. The female soldier grins. Challenge accepted. Moments later, the crowd of soldiers are yelling, “To your stomach! To your stomach!” The volunteer gasps, and down she goes.

Standing tired on the side – she insists she has exercised enough – is Cpl. Esther Feldhamer, a fitness instructor for her unit and a lone soldier from New York. Back on their own base, she can be called on at any moment by her officer to lead a short exercise. But times like these are rarer and more challenging than one might think.

“This is a week of trying to get into shape after sitting around and doing guard duty. Many complain that while on duty at the border they gain weight. But usually they are just too tired to exercise.”

Krav Maga For All

For many of the soldiers of the Caracal Brigade, this is their first experience with Krav Maga, a sport which had been previously reserved for elite units.

“My whole life I’ve been dying to learn Krav Maga. One of the reasons I joined the army was to learn Krav Maga, but I haven’t had the chance until now,” exclaimed Sgt. Raquel Silverman, who made aliyah (immigrated to Israel) from Brazil directly after her birthright trip. She hasn’t been home since.

One of the advantages of Krav Maga is that it can be learned relatively quickly. There is also Krav Maga that is tailored specifically for soldiers, such as strikes with a weapon or how to deal with attempted kidnappings.

There are also different techniques to be learned in Krav Maga, depending on whether the practitioner is a male or female.

“A woman who doesn’t have much body weight will need a different method to break free from a man who has grabbed her,” one Krav Maga instructor said.

The instructor asked a large soldier to grab him from behind. Once grabbed, the instructor wrapped a leg around the grabber’s thigh, leveraged himself to the side creating space to strike the attacker’s vitals repeatedly.

Some of the soldiers were pessimistic about the effectiveness of Krav Maga. Sgt. Lior Vazana, however, had a story of success.

“Once I was walking home when someone hit me from behind and took my wallet. I ran after him, grabbed his hand from behind, twisted it, took him to the floor, and took back my wallet.” After recounting her story, she returned to the exercise at hand – learning how to defend against an attacker from behind. This way, she’ll be ready from the start.

Share Button

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

Leave a comment (Select your commenting platform)

One Response to “Aching to Exercise: a Krav Maga Revolution”

  1. Benjamin Fox says:

    A great art of defending yourself against those who do you harm.

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Loading Facebook Comments ...
Loading Disqus Comments ...
Current Top Story
ancient skull discovered Gush Etzion
Hikers Find Human Skull and Bones in Gush Etzion Cave
Latest News Stories
ancient skull discovered Gush Etzion

A surprised group of hikers stumbled across human bones in a Gush Etzion cave. But what they actually found was even more astounding.

FBI Wanted poster for Osama bin Laden

Many Pakistanis consider bin Laden a “hero of Islam.”

Two major obstacles have kept Israel from joining the program: Allegations by U.S. officials that Israel has discriminated against Arab- and Muslim-Americans seeking entry, and a proliferation of young Israelis traveling to the United States as tourists and then working illegally.

A Lebanese man who was arrested in Thailand on suspicion of belonging to Hezbollah admitted to targeting Israelis, Thai media reported.

On Friday afternoon, Syrian fighter jets hit opposition/rebel targets and villages on the Syrian side of the Ramat HaGolan (Golan Heights), in the Quneitra region. Large pillars of smoke are seen rising from struck areas. Quneitra is the site of an official crossing between Syria and Israel on the Golan. IAF jets were sent out […]

As Rabbi Stav said, “You’re free to think what you want. But do you want me to recognize Chelsea Clinton’s child as a Jew?”

Chimpanzees and Orangutans eat Matza, unleavened bread traditionally eaten during the Passover holiday, at the Ramat Gan Safari on Thursday, April 17, 2014. I hope they can digest it. On Passover no leavened bread (Chametz) is allowed in Jewish possession, and that includes food we feed our animals.

Following intelligence reports of further expected Arab rioting and violence on the Temple Mount today, the police have placed restrictions on Muslim entry to the Jewish holy site, according to a report on Arutz-7. Entry will be limited to Muslims over the age of 50, and women, also they must be Israeli citizens or residency […]

PA President Abbas’s refusal to publicly condemn the terror attack that killed Baruch Mizrachi is putting a damper on the parade.

The Shas political party, founded and run by the late Rav Ovadia Yosef, has a appointed a new spiritual leader, according to a Galei Tzahal report. The rabbi chosen to replace Harav Ovadia and be the new president of the party’s Council of Torah Sages is Rabbi Shalom Cohen. Aryeh Deri is the political leader […]

In 1941, the Jews of Kiev received a similar leaflet. When they showed up the next day, more than 34,000 were murdered.

Teen stabbed in South Florida high school.

The Kotel Plaza, the stairs, the Kotel entrance, the roads, everything was packed for Birkat Cohanim – the Priestly Blessing of the People – now imagine if this had been held on top of Har HaBayit, the Temple Mount!

Four Israeli citizens were hurt Thursday in a road terror attack near Tekoa in Gush Etzion.

Israel Police closed access to the Temple Mount to Jews and other non-Muslims on Thursday due to Arab violence.

Jews in Donetsk, Ukraine this week were ordered to “register” themselves and their assets.

More Articles from IDF Spokesperson's Office
Israeli troops guarding the northern border.

Like Hamas, Hezbollah also builds tunnels. Those tunnels pose a serious danger to IDF border patrols.

Unit 9900 is an intelligence unit that utilizes the unique capabilities of soldiers on the autism spectrum.

The unique skills of people on the autistic spectrum adds great breadth to IDF intelligence work.

We, soldiers of the IDF, who stand guard over the people and the land, fulfill the hopes of the millions of Jewish people across the generations who sought freedom.

IDF helicopters are ready to act on a moment’s notice to defend the State of Israel.

The Samson Super Hercules aircraft ensures the IDF can safeguard Israel from far beyond her shores.

Intelligence organizations seek enemy’s secrets; for the past 35 years, all secrets are on computers.

Increased violence and attacks against Israel during March.

The vehicles drive through such dangerous places that the vehicles are armored, even the tires.

    Latest Poll

    Now that Kerry's "Peace Talks" are apparently over, are you...?







    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/aching-to-exercise-a-krav-maga-revolution/2013/07/01/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: