What is Krav Maga?

Krav Maga means contact combat in Hebrew.
It is not a martial art; art is something beautiful.

Krav Maga is not an art, it’s a fighting system designed to survive everyday street situations that people may encounter during their everyday life. Where most systems deal with 1-on-1 situations KM will teach you about how to deal with multiple attackers, the different stages of a fight and avoidance techniques. Where martial arts have rules, because essentially they’re used for sports, when it comes to self defence KM believes that there are no rules. Nothing is off limits and anything that you can do or use to protect yourself and loved ones if in a dangerous situation is encouraged.

Unfortunately we live in a society where attacks are more often, and involve the use of weapons such as knifes, baseball bats and in some cases guns. The use of knifes in particular is more prevalent than ever before and there is often a story in the news with someone being stabbed. KM can help teach you to defend yourself in these dangerous situations giving you peace of mind and confidence. KM is a proven technique in close quarter self defence which has been tried and tested in many real life situations all over the world. KM is the official close quarter combat system of Israel’s armed forces and many S.W.A.T., Law Enforcement and Military units all over the world.

KM will teach you how to defend against the following:

  • Punches & kicks
  • Bear hugs
  • Chokes/head locks
  • Stick/ bat attacks
  • Gun threats
  • Knife threats/attacks
  • And many more.

History of Krav Maga

This highly effective form of self defence was originally developed by Imi Lechtenfeld.

This highly effective form of self defence was originally developed by Imi Lechtenfeld. Imi moved to Israel from Slovakia after the end of the Second World War. After the formation of Israel in 1948, Imi became the chief instructor of physical training and Krav Maga at the Israeli Defence Force’s (IDF) school of combat fitness. During this time he taught Krav Maga to the IDF’s most elite units including the Haganah, and the special commando units of the Palmack and the Palyam. When he retired in 1964 from the IDF, Imi adapted the Krav Maga style for civilian use as a self defence system.

The most widely recognised organisation of Krav Maga was the International Krav Maga Federation (IKMF) and is headed by the World Wide Chief Instructor Eyal Yanilov. Eyal was taught directly by Imi and holds the highest grade ever awarded by the founder, Master Level 3 / Expert level 8. In 2010 the IKMF changed its name to KMG (Krav Maga Global).

Today KM has a huge following worldwide and due to people feeling the need to be able to defend themselves if in a confrontational situation, and in the UK KM’s popularity is on the increase.

Imi Lechtenfeld

Imi Lechtenfeld

(1910 – 1998)

Often seminars are held all over the UK with top instructors from KMG offering subject specific workshops to help improve the student’s skill levels. Like other martial arts KM has a grading system for the student to progress.

The Krav Maga grading system is divided into 4 categories, these are Practitioner, Graduate, Expert and Master. There are also Military and Law Enforcement Level instructors (not shown). Each level has it’s own badges of merit and are colour coded as described on this website.

All Institute students are able to attend regular grading assessments held here in the UK. All grading assessments are conducted by the expert members of the KMG global training team. The Institute holds extensive and detailed pre-grading seminars as well as a mock grading to ensure students are fully prepared well in advance.

In order to test for their first grade, students need to have been training in the Krav Maga system for a minimum of 4 months prior to the date of the grading.



(P1-P5) These are Krav Maga students. Student’s uniforms have white trim & designs (badge’s, print & stripes).

Their grading patches are gold with black bars representing their level i.e. 1 bar = Practitioner Level 1 (P1). To the left is a KMG Practitioner Level 2 (P2) grade patch.


These are mainly Krav Maga instructors, although there may be G level students who have not taken the instructors certification.

Their grading patches are cobalt blue with black bars representing their level i.e. 1 bar = Graduate Level 1 (G1). To the left is a KMG Graduate Level 5 (G5) grade patch.


These are high level instructors. Usually specialising or assisting in other areas such as Police, Special Units or Military instruction, in addition to their civilian qualification.

Expert Instructor’s uniforms have gold trim and designs (badge’s, print & stripes). Their grading patches are black with gold bars. Below is a KMG Expert Level (E1) grade patch.

Interested in Krav Maga?