Testimony to our instructors and training. This morning I was at a gas station in Corona. When I got out of my truck I heard and notice a man yelling and screaming took mental note and went about my business.
When I came out of the store the man was approaching a lady pumping gas. I could not hear the conversation, but she looked uncomfortable.
So I decided it would be good to see if I could help at the same time a employee of the gas station ( a young lady) was heading over to ask him to leave. He began to argue with her and as I just watched and listened I could see he was not going to listen.
So I decided it was time for me to step in.
Because of our training I was very calm and compassionate.
Calm meaning I knew if it went down it was not going to go well for him.
Compassionate because we are never abusive or offensive. Really I did not know why he was mad or if he had a mental illness. I just knew he was making the lady pumping gas uncomfortable and the employee was tired of it.
I Mentally prepared my self saw my self as powerful look him in the face and took a couple powerful steps towards him (keeping a safe distance) and said, she has asked you to leave could you please do that. He argued a bit as he stepped back. And I repeated what i said. I must not have had a nice look on my face at this time because he said, your not gonna hurt me are you. And of course I said, no I dont want to but you are making people feel uncomfortable and they have asked you to leave and I invited him again to do that.
He went on to explain him self that he was not mad at me or them.
Eventually after 3 min he decided to take the offer to walk away.
I was aware and in tune with my surroundings.
I was so calm. Because I just felt so prepared.
I was not abusive to him because of the compassion we are told to have.
I chose common sense over self defense.
Thank you West Coast Krav Maga
Sheepdog in training
I was thinking about how proud I am of my daughters and feel so blessed by them. Nikki is graduating college this on this month, kills everything she does, landed one of the best straight out of college jobs on Walls street that she starts Jan 3rd and most importantly, is just an amazingly strong, confident, sweet and driven young lady with a big heart that everyone loves, they both are amazing... I can’t stop thinking about how blessed I feel as a father that I had your help in raising them both to be who they are today. I just wanted to remind you what a blessing and amazing influence you’ve been to our family and especially me as a father. It was quite amazing to know I was sending them five days a week to train and be molded by a man and his family that demanded the same high standards of ethics, character and personal growth that I had for them myself. I’m very grateful for it and just wanted to remind you how much it has meant to us. Thank you John!
I can't express to you what a difference Krav has made to Allison and Lauren. Their awareness level has skyrocketed, not to mention, they are more confident in themselves and it's spilling over to every facet of their lives. And of course, I feel like they are being armed with the tools that could make the difference between life and death.
We abolutely love what we are learning, not just because we can defend ?ourselves, but for the lessons of character and personal growth.
On a personal level, the last two years at your studio have changed my perception on life. I make a concious and honest effort everyday, to live by example, with integrity, being who I am and doing what I say I'm going to do. My kids notice a change, and they are implementing the same in their own lives.
I have heard you say on many occasions, that doing the right thing is not always easy, and that being a good Christian is hard work. You're right. But I would rather spend my life being proud of what I represent, to my kids, to my family and friends, as a business woman, and as a Christian. And being in your program has strengthened those areas of our lives. Thank you...for the lessons in Krav..the lessons in life...for sharing your family....for being a man of integrity.?
Driving home this afternoon, my son Jeremy reminded me to write this testimonial letter when he uttered those words I've been waiting so long to hear from his mouth: "Mom, can I go to karate today?" His request may not be earth shaking to others but to me it shows major growth for my 9 year old son. Jeremy has been a member of Xtreme Fit Martial Arts in Murrieta for the past four years and is an upcoming candidate for his junior black belt in June.
Over the years since he has attended his Krav classes my husband and I have watched him not only improve in Martial Arts but improve in his attitude. As the baby of four, Jeremy is known in our family as the "wild child" and at times been quite a handful for us. Many times over the past couple of years he has asked us if he could quit karate to pursue other sports, and each time our answer was simply "No". Even a couple weeks ago he mentioned that after he receives his junior black belt that he wants to take a break from karate to play baseball. We are happy to report that all of that has changed! He has a new excitement for karate and is genuinely taking pride in his hard work and he strives to improve every day. His attitude at home has taken a change for the better as well; he often steps in to help out with daily chores around the house (sometimes without being asked). He is keeping track of his daily sit-ups, push-ups and mile runs in his black belt log sheet. He has even added additional exercises that he has agreed to do each day. Jeremy loves his Saturday cycle class with Miss Ericka even though it requires him to wake early each Saturday morning!
We sincerely believe without the excellent instruction from Sensei Thierry and Miss Ericka, Jeremy would not have developed such a desire to improve in karate. Our family has a great respect for both of these instructors. Thierry and Ericka show the kids in their class a true example of how a real black belt should present themself: modesty, integrity, courteous, compassion, gratitude, self-control, perseverance, indomitable spirit... Thank you Thierry and Ericka!
We are so proud of our son and his incredible spirit. We know he will never regret staying in karate and graduating to his black belt. Jeremy could be in any other sport but Krav Maga has helped develop his character and is turning him into a young man that not only me and my husband can be proud of but also it is showing Jeremy that he can be proud of himself.
I just wanted to thank you and your staff for the excellent training in Krav Maga and Kickboxing. Recently I trained to do an Ironman Triathlon and this time I incorporated Kickboxing into my training. I had no idea how much this would benefit me. The overall core training was intense and actually improved my swimming. The leg routines were truly beneficial for running and biking. When my days were short and I had to choose my workout for the day, Kickboxing proved to be the most intense and beneficial workout I could do in 45 minutes. I encourage anybody who is looking for a true total body workout to try your classes. Your instructors not only teach it, but they do it, and with an intensity that is inspiring. My wife and kids also do classes at your studio and enjoy them as much as I do. Your family and yourself truly create a welcoming atmosphere for all who come through the door. Thank you again for helping me achieve another Ironman Finish!
I wanted to thank you for everything you have done for me. Since the first day I walked into your studio you have been supportive and understanding with my situation. Your family and business was a vital step in my path to recovery. I will always thank you for it. You gave me a place to be safe and learn to be safe.
I first heard of Krav Maga 5 or 6 years ago during a Defensive Tactics class I took through my department. I liked Krav Maga immediately because it was very straight forward and easy to learn. Previously, the department had taught Taisubaki. All I remember is position one; position five and twist, twist, twist. All of which flew out the window as soon as you hit the jail. There were no kata’s to learn, no forms to memorize. I didn’t have to imagine myself as some animal or grip the floor with my toes in order to remain balanced.
As Darren Levine says in the book, “Krav Maga for Beginners,”
“…you won’t find anything “zen” in Krav Maga. We don’t mediate, or find our center, or work on our chi. There’s a place for such things in one’s life, but you won’t find that place inside a Krav Maga school.”
I remember coming home that night after class and looking for a Krav Maga school in the Temecula Valley. There was only one, Premier Martial Arts and it was located down off the I-79. I lived in Murrieta and frankly, I made the excuse that the school was too far to drive, too far out of the way, etc. Honestly, I was afraid it was going to be a hardcore, in your face, full contact, butt -kicking festival in every class. I had visions of black eyes and bloody noses. I’d never been in a street fight in my life. I’ll admit, I was intimidated.
Fast forward to December of 2008. I’m working in a different jail, with different partners. I’m 5 or 6 years older and starting to feel it. My knees are hurting and m wind is non-existent. I lift weights, so I’m pretty big and fairly strong, but my stamina is zero. I’m packing about 10 extra pounds; my blood pressure is beginning to skyrocket and I’m lethargic and depressed from too many hours on the job and not enough sleep.
One of my partners approached me one day and said, “Hey, I hear you’re interested in Krav Maga.” I went off on him! I started rambling about how there was a school in Temecula and how I’d always really wanted to go and what a great system it seemed to be and why I liked it so much. So my partner replies, “I’ve been taking it for a few months now. They opened a school in Murrieta. I have passes for a free month if you’d like one.”
This time I was all over it. Unbeknownst to me, my partner had really been talking up Krav Maga for a few weeks at work and had gotten lukewarm responses at best. He was pretty gun-shy about giving me the pass. He was afraid I wouldn’t show; afraid I would flake. He kept asking me, “Now you’re sure you’re going to go? If you’re not going to go, I’ll give this pass to someone else.” I said, “Dude, I’ll be there. I swear. When is the next class? I’m there.” He still looked dubious, but handed over the pass and told me there was a class the next morning.
Absolutely one of the best decisions I’ve ever made in my life! I kick myself every day for not starting 5 or 6 years ago because I’d be a black belt by now! There are absolutely no negative aspects to Krav Maga from my point of view. That’s not just lip service, those are words born from almost 17 years experience working in custody and jail environments. Those of you in this line of work, know. Those of you not in this line of work, even those of you who work in a patrol, may have difficulty fully appreciating the situations we find ourselves in.
Basically, my work days for the last 17 years have consisted of dealing with killers, rapists, thieves, druggies, child murderers, gangsters, the mentally ill and thugs of every ilk. I do this in a locked cage, without any weapons except pepper spray, maybe a flashlight, and my body’s own weapons. For you patrol folks, imagine the biggest, craziest, most violent jerk you ever arrested. You may have spent 6, maybe even 8 hours with this person. Now imagine spending 12 hours a day with him and a 150 or so of his cronies for weeks at a time. Welcome to my world.
Those of us in lockup environments don’t often have the luxury of being outdoors. We don’t see sunlight. We don’t get to take an hour lunch at a nice restaurant. Sometimes we don’t eat at all during our shift. We walk through a high power housing module with one partner, where the numbers are stacked 40 to 2 against us. We walk inside the cage, the door closes and 12 hours later we walk out only to do it all again tomorrow. Sometimes, depending on the time of year, we come to work in the dark and then we drive home in the dark; having not once seen a ray of sunshine.
These stressors take their toll. We eat too much and it’s always fried, processed junk. We drink too much coffee and soda. We exercise too little because we are always so tired after working a long shift. The last thing we want to do after working 12 hours is go run or hit the gym for an hour.
Because of these factors, we become overweight if not downright obese. Our blood pressure goes up and our stamina goes down. Depression is very prevalent, although we never talk about it. To talk about depression is weakness. We have difficulty sleeping because we switch between day shift and night shift every 3 months for years on end, so our bodies are never quite sure what we’re doing.
All the while, the clientele we deal with are working out in their cells for 3 or 4 hours a day and planning ways to hurt us. They are being fed 3 square meals a day and getting plenty of rest. We watch while they sleep. I know inmates who can do squats for hours; pull-ups that I wouldn’t believe unless I saw them do it and hundreds of push-ups. I could do about 20 push-ups on a good day, maybe 2 pull-ups and I got winded just running to the fridge for a beer. You laugh, but it’s sad because there is very little exaggeration there.
It’s June 2009 now. I’ve been taking Krav Maga diligently for about six months. I’ve lost very little weight, but I’ve lost a ton of inches. All the weight has gone from my gut and love handles, to my chest, shoulders and legs. I can do cardio for an hour and a half straight. And I’m not talking about jogging. I’m punching, kicking, wrestling and throwing people around. I’ve learned how to effectively throw a punch and many other strikes. I’m learning how to fight multiple combatants; which in a jail setting is very, very important. I’ve become more aware of my surroundings. My functional strength and stamina have improved enormously. I’ve lost size in my arms, but I’m much stronger today than I was six months ago.
My fitness level has improved and my health has improved along with it. My blood pressure is way down. I’m taking my food to work now instead of eating all the fried, processed food served there. I have much more energy. My hand-eye coordination has improved as well as my balance. I’m not nearly as depressed as I was six months ago. I attribute that to the fact that I have much more confidence in myself and in my abilities than I have ever had before.
I used to be the guy who carried a gun with him EVERYWHERE he went. No matter where I was, or what I was doing, I was armed. Going to the beach? Gun in my bag. Picking up the kids at school? Gotta have a gun. Running to the grocery store? Don’t forget my gun.
Now days? It’s still a good idea to assume I’m strapped, but it’s much less likely that I will be. I know I can take care of myself now. If someone threatens or attacks me, I don’t need to wave a gun around to protect myself. I’m not a small man. I’m 6’4” tall and weigh over 200 pounds. But I’ve never been terribly confident. I’ve never been in a street fight in my life. I used to get bullied a lot in school. Those things stick in the back of your brain for a long, long time.
When you read the literature on Krav Maga schools, they all say things like, “Krav Maga will increase your confidence” and Krav Maga this and Krav Maga that. It’s absolutely true. You pay your monthly dues; you get to take unlimited classes and you get to wear a pretty belt. But the added benefits you take with you go far beyond what you learn in the classroom.
Krav is good for your job because it helps to keep you safe. Krav is good for your family because it helps you to keep THEM safe. Krav is good for your health. Krav is good for your state of mind. Krav is good for your confidence. Krav will help you to live longer and happier in a multitude of ways.
Stepping out on the mat for the last time as a brown belt was one of the most nerve-racking things of my life. Palms sweating, mouth dryer than the Sahara, and all I can thing about is: I am one hour from getting a Black Belt in Krav Maga. Over my five years at X-Treme Fit Martial Arts, I always heard people saying what the day they got their Black Belt was like, but you can never truly understand the euphoric sensation that takes hold of your body when Sensei John unties your brown belt, throws it to the side, and ties the crisp Black Belt around your waist. I had never been more proud than that night in December to wear a cotton belt over my training pants and t-shirt. I look out to the crowd, and in front of me are my closest friends and my family. Although they had experienced Krav with me in a different way, they too, could not understand the power that the Black Belt gives you the minute it presses tightly against your waist. When I first started the program, I was in seventh grade, slightly overweight and not very dedicated to anything other than my schooling. I started Krav Maga as a way to be active and to do something I enjoyed, but little did I know, that five years later I would be so passionate about something that became a very significant part of my life. As I began to become more and more dedicated to the sport, outside of Krav, my friends and family began to see a difference in my attitude, I was no longer the shy kid who would only speak when spoken to or sit in the corner and read while the “cool kids” would talk about their social lives; I became a very outgoing, confident person who felt like no challenge was challenging enough, and that I could do anything if I set my mind to it. My life became so much more enjoyable to live and made me want to be the best person that I could be. Krav Maga did not only affect my personality in a social aspect, but in a mental aspect as well. I knew with certainty that I would get my Black Belt, no matter the circumstances, no matter the social sacrifices I would have to make in order to make my dream a reality. I would not have been able to reach my goal without the love and support of my family and friends, but more importantly, Sensei John. Without Sensei John there, from beginning to end, I would not be the person that I am today. Because of Sensei John and the program at X-Treme Fit, I became a person who does not believe in the words can’t or quit; they are just not a part of my vocabulary because I know that with the right amount of support and mental strength any goal that I set for myself will be achieved.