Krav Maga was the hand-to-hand combat technique I learned in the 82nd.

I spent nearly two years training on that, twice a week. It’s incredibly effective and I enjoyed it a great deal.

I usually don’t mention it to anyone because it causes all kinds of stupid ideas to form in people’s heads.

Krav Maga is great for overriding the human natural instinct to fight fair. Humans don’t naturally try to irreparably damage one another in hand-to-hand combat. Going for the head and the ribcage with a fist is not terribly effective, but that’s what untrained people tend to do. Hell, it’s what I did when I was bold and fearless but not that well-trained. It’s why I have two scars on my ring finger and pinky from punching some kid in the teeth (who had tried to make me eat a piece of paper).

Krav Maga is also great for women to learn as 99.9% of people attacking you will have no training. Size does matter, no doubt. In equally-trained opponents, the larger person wins 90% of the time. That’s just life.

However, I watched one of my 5’ 3” 140-pound female Krav Maga instructors absolutely destroy 200 pound military men who were giving it everything they had to take her down but who had no training. She was fast, relentless and incredibly strong.

Eventually, after two years of training, a few of them managed to sort-of win a fight with her (I never did).

That’s what training can do.

Krav uses short, powerful strikes and is like applied karate (which is mostly ornamental and not useful in a no-holds-barred fight). It doesn’t guarantee that you’ll win a fight if you are attacked unexpectedly, but it does a heck of a lot to even up the odds.

As anyone sane knows, the real use of Krav and any fighting technique shouldn’t be to punish your opponent or to kill them, but to disable and incapacitate them enough for you to get away.

I wish every woman got the chance to learn some Krav, but I also wish we didn’t live in a world where that wish made any sort of sense.