Monday, December 03, 2007

Krav Maga, the One for Me?

Since I stopped training at my local taekwondo & hapkido school back in February, I've been trying to figure out what to replace it with. I like the exercise (not too much cardio, please!), the "me" time, the focus, the stretching, the weapons, the feeling of preparedness; I like training with a group and teaching others; and I especially love learning self-defense.

I thought about a number of different replacement activities over the past few months. (I thought about other martial arts, of course, but didn't really know what would be a satisfactory style for me.) I thought about taking dance classes, and might still do that for fun. I thought about yoga, because I like the stretching. I didn't give running a moment's consideration. :) I do enjoy walking, but haven't started that yet as a form of exercise. I thought about weight training, because strength training was part of my routine at the school.

But none of those really gives me the combination of factors that I really love about martial arts training. I also was hesitant to start with another style of martial art because I thought it might not meet my expectations. I didn't want to start from the beginning--I want to advance my training, not repeat basic techniques that might just be a variation of what I already know. And the more time that passes that I am not training, the more I feel I'm forgetting.

So, I had heard about Krav Maga somewhere (and if you get the History channel, there were a couple episodes on it in the series the Human Weapon, but I don't have cable), and found there were no schools in the area. There is one up in Herndon, 2 hrs away, called One Spirit Martial Arts. They teach several styles of martial arts, and Krav Maga is one of them. So I emailed them and asked if they ever had seminars on the weekends, so I could see what it was all about. They said they didn't have any scheduled at the time, but to sign up for their email list, so I would know when they did.

Well, finally, they did schedule a women's self-defense seminar based on Krav Maga techniques, and it was held yesterday. I drove up and had invited my sister-in-law to join me, since she lives in Herndon, so we went in together. It was so completely worth the drive up and back, even in the rain. The techniques were basic, but very effective, and the mindset the instructor tried to impart upon us was very helpful. He didn't try to teach a lot of different techniques, but rather just a few simple and effective ones for us to hold onto for now. (Have I mentioned yet how sore my body is today??) I'm sure there is much more to the regular training than what we saw in this seminar, but it just makes me want to find a school in my area--anyone out there looking to open one in the Charlottesville area?? I'll be your first student, I swear!

So, my more immediate problem of finding a replacement for my taekwondo and hapkido training hasn't been solved, but I know what martial art I'll move to next, when possible. The instructor recommended a book in case I wanted to start training on my own, and I plan to buy a copy. For now, though, I might just clip on a pedometer and start walking.

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3 comments:

piscesgrrl said...

Wow, good for you! My husband has a black belt in shaolin kempo karate but hasn't practiced now for quite a while. I've never tried it!

Hope you get a school in your area!!

Jo said...

Kickin' ass and takin' names, I like it! :)

I really need to get into some kind of martial art (I honestly think it would be good for me) but it's the getting off my fat hiney part that is stalling things. LOL.

Silvia said...

The feeling is awesome. :) As long as you like the instructor, it really doesn't matter so much what style you learn. They're all good. And t'ai chi is slow moving but is still defensive if you just speed up the moves. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tai_chi_chuan