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Witnes to a KM1 Test at Krav Maga Detroit

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Witnes to a KM1 Test at Krav Maga Detroit



I write this on the eve of the 1 year anniversary of my very first Krav class.

Tonight, I attended my first Level 1 test. 

As I watched the grueling 3 and a half hour test, I couldn’t help but reflect on all that I have learned and how much I have grown this past year.  


I am sure that this experience is not unique to just me.  Every one of us has a story about what brought us to KMD, what has kept us here, and how it has changed us for the better.  


I have heard people talk about how learning a martial art or self-defense has changed them from the inside, out.  I never truly understood what they meant until I began training. 


Through training we have become, stronger (physically, mentally, and emotionally); quicker (physically and mentally); more resilient; harder working; wiling to push past our pre-conceived limits.  We learn to set and achieve goals. We become aware of how much we lie to ourselves and all of the bullshit we tell ourselves to assuage the guilt and shame for not achieving what we would like to accomplish.  We become raw.  We are exposed.  And most of all, we are reborn, rising from the ashes like a phoenix.


As I posted videos of Pawel screaming and cursing at everyone testing, several friends and loved ones commented wondering why he had such a bug up his ass.


They also could not fathom why he was encouraging everyone to “just ring the bell and quit. And to stop wasting his f*cking time.”


A few concerned relatives asked me why we put up with someone screaming at us like that.  I replied  “Not only do we put up with it, we pay him good money to do it.  Anything less than that, and I’d ask for a refund.” 


I went on to explain that this isn’t a cardio kickboxing gym where we are just here to get a good workout and have a good time.  Though, we get both of those things, they are just byproducts of what brought us here. We all came to KMD, specifically, to learn how to fight for our lives.  


I told them, “We don’t need Papa Smurf teaching us, treating us like delicate snowflakes and telling us how wonderful we are.  We need a Full Metal Jacket drill sergeant, challenging us, pushing us, and most of all - testing us - to see if we have what it takes to fight for ourselves.” 


They asked me why he wasn’t encouraging us and motivating us and trying to make us stronger and better.  


Confused, I said... “He is doing all of those things...”.   I couldn’t understand how they didn’t get that.  It was so bizarre to me. 


And it dawned on me, right then, that while Krav Maga can be learned by just about anyone, not everyone possesses that inner warrior that links us practitioners together, creating an unspoken bond and sense of camaraderie.


And on Friday, I got to see that inner warrior in all who tested.  I started at KMD around the same time a few of the testers started, and it was awe-inspiring to see how far they had come.  And what was possible with hard work, determination, and an unrelenting inner warrior spirit.


So, to : Eileen, Danica, Teresa, Lawrence, Jason, Nora, and Dave : 


Thank you for being such pinnacles of strength and determination.  Thank you for exemplifying that inner warrior that we are all striving for.  And thank you for doing all of this so humbly and so gracefully.  We owe you a debt of gratitude. 


Blog written by KMD Student Valene Ayar

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***KMD IS CLOSED MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND 5/27 -5/29. Classes resume Tuesday 5/30***