Studying a martial art can be a pretty cool experience. I know what you’re thinking, “Hey Jon, we don’t want to take karate classes right now but you definitely should have asked us 20 years ago when we were 6.” I hear what you’re saying, I used to have the same exact attitude but I was recently talking to two friends of mine who study Krav Maga and love it so I decided to look into it. To be completely honest, I had no idea what it was even after speaking with them so I looked it up. According to the Krav Maga Academy in New York City Krav Maga is in an advanced Israeli Self Defense System designed to give real solutions to any violent situation one may encounter. The effectiveness of this system is in part due to its simplicity and reliance on your already existing instincts. In other words, it’s a very practical martial art. It doesn’t focus on Jean-Claude Van Damme like moves or concern itself too much with pretty colored belts. It prepares you for real life situations including somebody coming at you with a knife or a gun. Another benefit of Krav Maga is that it can serve as a great workout. It might not be very strenuous for your first couple of classes but once things get moving and you’re constantly kicking, punching, and practicing defensive moves against a real life sparring opponent it can turn into a nice little cardio workout which is especially attractive to those who cringe at the words stationary bike or treadmill. People are always looking for a way to spice up their cardio and Krav Maga can be just the solution. You’re learning what could be a lifesaving martial art while burning some calories, that’s a good combination by anybody’s standards. Krav Maga also helps flexibility and reflexes. I’m sure a lot of you have heard the old “martial arts instill a sense of self confidence” but it’s true. Every man wants to know he is able to defend himself and when you actually can you tend to have a cool, calm, confidence in you without the douchiness of knowing you can kick somebody’s ass. It’s always good for a man to have a hobby and when then hobby is something active that has a practical use then all the better. The exercise that you actually enjoy can also make you more focused in other areas of your life. One thing you want to make sure of is that the instructors are the real deal. You don’t want Shirley who teaches elderly aquarobics 5 days a week teaching you how to disarm a gunman. I’d be weary of a gym that starts teaching a Krav Maga class and really focus on places that solely teach Krav Maga. One school whose instructors are official is the Krav Maga Academy where every single instructor is a former special operations soldier and has taught Krav Maga to Navy SEALS and FBI agents. If you want to learn to defend yourself, lose a little weight, and do something besides watching repeats of Weeds on Netflix, give Krav Maga a shot but be warned that it’s something that should be taken seriously.