1. Intro

This essay is part of the IKMF expert 2 test for the civilian sector.

I am teaching krav maga since 2011.

I did the CIC in Germany under the guidance of Amnon Darsa, Tamir Gilad and Avi Moyal.

Before I started krav maga  I was many years active as a professional judoka and also became a judo teacher. After I stopped with competing in judo I did some jiu-jitsu and grappling. My current profession is gym owner/trainer.

I started teaching krav maga toegether with Ed Wilten at Allstimula.

Nowadays I have my own club called Krav Maga Limburg.

We teach in different groups;

-       adults,

-       women only

-       juniors

-       kids.

I am the lead instructor at the school and together with Tim Cuijpers , a former student and now instructor, we take care of the lessons. Ilja Hofman from Tactical Solutions works very close with me because we are the only two IKMF schools in the south of Holland.

Since i became a krav maga civil instructor I started to get more specialized so i followed the courses of the IKMF. Because I completed the courses I’m

IKMF Kids instructor

IKMF women/stay away instructor

IKMF combat fighter instructor

In this essay I try to explain my personal and professional opinion about the subject;

what are the criterions of creating a Krav Maga syllabus(curriculum) and why should the differ between women and children.

  1. Index

Intro                                        page 1.

Index                                       page 2.

Essay                                       page 3.

Conclusion                              page 10.

Recourse list                            page 11.

  1. Essay

This essay is about the criteria of a good curriculum and why or why not they should be differ between women and children.

The most important of the course will be, and then to speak with Imi’s words;


In this essay I would like to add something to that;

“hope that everyone may walk in peace”.

In the time that Imi developed the krav maga it was only for the soldiers of the IDF.

This was a specific group of people and easy to teach and to guide.

They are easy to teach and guide because they all have the same goals.

We are talking about young adults what are healthy and fit and have a certain physic.

When we’re looking to the krav maga now its of course completely different.

You can see this of course at the many divisions we have in the IKMF

-       Civil Krav Maga division

-       Kids Krav Maga division

-       Women Krav Maga / Stay Away division

-       Law Enforcement division

-       VIP Protection division

-       Military division

-       Adaptive Krav Maga division.

I am not going to explain all the divisions but we are going to compare the differences and the similarities of three

  1. the civil
  2. women 
  3. kids syllabus.

What in my professional view is very important and what we see in the IKMF syllabus is the structure and the importance of the problems what are passing by when the levels are going up.

Its more likely that you get hit or choked compared that someone with a machine-gun will attack or threaten you. There for the most likely attacks are in the K1/J1/P1 and K2/J2/P2 syllabus. This is important and the people joining your class will understand why we teach it and a lot of people may already whitnessed that problem. So they are enthusiastic to learn the solution.

When we look to the syllabus of the Stay Away or women krav maga then we see this a lot less.

This has two reasons;

1.And this is a very importend reason; 99% of the attacks/threats to women has to do something with abuse motivation.

When a man attacks a women he wants to touch/control or abuse/rape her.

This has of course influence on the syllabus because it makes it very specific but also a lot smaller.

Why should we teach women for example a machine gun takedown.

But we talk about that later.

Another criteria of the syllabus is the aspect of learning decent attacks.

As we are always talking of self defense it’s impossible to defend myself without counter strikes or even maybe strikes as a prevention.

Specially for the women, there will never be a good outcome in a violent confrontation without the women striking to the vulnerable points like the nose and groin.

So starting this subject we see some major differences between the children and the women syllabus.

When we talk about the children’s syllabus we see a big difference of attacks because of age of the children.


5-7 years old.

We are talking about life skills.

Motoric abilities, as stances, working on strength.

Social skills like use your mouth as a first tool for dealing with situations.

Self discipline

Dealing with all kind of dangers like break falls and rolls.

But in general no violence or as less as possible.


7-10 years old.

Here we start to teach the kids to make good attacks like palm strikes, straight punch, hammer punches, elbow strikes and kicks/knees.

But we not teaching them to use it at each other.

In the techniques we learn them to solve the problem and finish with a push.

So for example; release from choke from the front, it is pluck with both hands and then push to the body or shoulders.

Junior 1;

11-14 years old.

Here we also start teaching in the J1/J2 with a lot of strikes, because not every one comes from the kids classes of course.

The big difference here with the kids is that instead of pushing to the body they can also make a push or open hand attack to the face.

Certain when they reaching 12,13 years of age.

Junior 2;

14+ years old.

This syllabus does not differ a lot of the normal adult version.

Here they make strikes to the body and head and also use of vulnerable points like groin, eyes and throat.

What also is importend in the complete syllabus but also in your teaching is that you make the same attack in different ways.

Because you are also still training motoric skills.

A example is a simple straight kick.

Sometimes i tell them to kick, recoil an put the leg back were it came from.

But one other time they have to kick, recoil and step out of the line.

Seems a very simple task but for some kids its a big difference motorical wise.

So you see there is a big difference in the use of attacks depending of the age of children.

What is importend is that we teach them that we don’t want to create more violence but use the correct defense with the correct attack.

So not to punch someone in the face when he is holding your wrist, try to save it properly.

When we now start looking at the normal civil syllabus you see a very wide range of different attacks.

Variating from normal punches till even jumping and scissor kicks.

When we going to translate that to the women syllabus its complete not at order.

Because it’s not relevant for the women and i personally think when i show the women a jumping double side kick they all start laughing and go home.

We talked about it earlier, almost every attack to a women will have something to do with sex/touching.

So the most attacks are at short range and very aggressive.

The first thing they learn is; balls, nose, nose.

That means a knee/kick in the balls and two strikes(palm) to the nose.

Here is why and we as instructor explain it also in the women class because lot of women don’t want to attack.

Balls; no damage

          a soft attack is enough(immediate pain)

          does not matter the size of the attacker there  is always pain for at least 30 seconds

Nose; when you hit the nose the attacker will cry, not specific for the pain but because it’s in connection with the eyes. If the strike is hard it will give a bleeding nose, most of the attackers give attention to that so you have time to run.

When they do the additional lessons after the seminar than we teach some other simpel attacks but thats it.

When we go further in the syllabus for the kids/juniors we see the subject hand/wrist grabs.

It is important that we teach the children the soft solutions.

As mentioned before we don’t want to create more problems or violence.

And i see it in the classes that they like that a lot, because its like a trick.

The feeling of succes is very big when they do release from wrist grab.

After they practiced of course I tell them about hard solution(kick,punch) and tell them why by example.

So first I take a kid by the wrist and talk to him, naturally he does what he practiced before.

Then I don’t say anything when I take the wrist and start pulling. He can’t do the solution we did before and we do biting or punch/kick. So they recognize that the problems were completely different.

In the women syllabus is also the wrist grab but it’s direct with a pull.

Simple, why should a man just hold the wrist of a women.

As mentioned before it turns to sex or pull here to a place were he can do his thing with here.

So in the women syllabus in this subject no soft solution.

Because from just holding to pulling you to some where you don’t want to be happens in a split of a second.

The subject of Bearhugs.

In the kids lessons they like it a lot.

For kids en early juniors its complete fun and also natural to the do bearhugs.

Also in the fighting and most of the time it ends on the ground were they go further competing/fighting.

The solutions are not so very different from the normal civil syllabus.

Than the women, for women is bearhugs a big problem.

Specialy when its performed by a man because mostly of the big difference in strength.

In general a man is a lot stronger than a women.

In some cases it’s also hard for the women to reach vulnerable points, certain with bearhug from behind.

So in the women syllabus we work a lot with preventions.

It is most of the time easier to prevent the attack as solving the problem of the bearhug.


This is simple;


For the women of course it is in the syllabus.

The importance is on knife threat.

Comming back to the most common threat to women, its about sex.

So the knife has a function of scaring the women and keeping her under control because the attacker wants to violated or rape.

This is completely different from the P2 syllabus what is pointing to robbery.

Because it is a threat is importend to wait for a good chance.

Because of the distance it will be always get control over the knife and start asap with counterstrikes to the balls.

Ground techniques;

As in the subject of bearhugs the kids like to be on the ground and do ground fighting in games like ; king of the matt.

Most common problem when you let them fight is: choke sitting on top and headlock from side on the ground.

So these two are of course in the syllabus.

Also the same as with bearhugs for women it is a big problem to be on the ground, even without being attacked.

Laying on the ground even in a women only class is a problem, they just don’t want to be there! They don’t feel comfartabel on the ground. Most problems for the women is; choke on top, like in a bedroom, also choke while the attacker sits between the legs(rape) and a technique what is only in the women syllabus but very importend between the legs while laying on your belly.(rape)

It is not necessary to explain al the solutions because we want to show the differences in the syllabus between the groups like women, children and the normal civilian krav maga.

Another important thing what we see in the different syllabuses is the way of teaching.

When we talk about a normal civil krav maga class, than we start with a warm-up.

Then we explain the problem we’re going to handle this class.

Show the problem and start training .

Later of course summarize drills and most of the time fighting at the end.

When we go to kids /juniors ;

We also start with a warm up but mostly with a game element in it.

For kids games related to the subject are very important.

Then I am going to tell them a story what leads us to the problem we are going to solve.

Then they going to create the problem with each other and lots of times the solution comes be there selves.

Then I demonstrate the solution and we practice it how we normally also do with first wow demo, slow demo, dry drill, whet drill and free practice.

Then we go to another game, sometimes to reboot and sometimes for another problem.

But a lot is about the krav maga games in the kids/junior section.

It’s divided more or less like;

Kiddy 70% of the class is games, but this can be catching, fighting, aggression or dedication games.

Kids 60% of the class is games.

Juniors 40/50% of the class is games but more on fighting/agression multi attackers.

When teaching women only/stay away;

I always start a new group with the seminar as i learned at the WIC with Shlomi Moyal.

First i welcome them and tell who i am and what we are going to do today.

I also tell them that nothing is obligated and when they want to step out for a while this always can.

This is very important and gives a lot of rest.

I think the most important in teaching women is, to create a environment where they feel safe. Also a must is that you start every technique with a story about how it happend to a women, in there heads they have to be in that place.

Other wise they will not understand they danger or the issue behind the attack.

When i tell a man; this is choke from the front and we solve it like this.

It is crystal clear and starts training.

When we do this in women class they have 500 questions; why did he do that, why her, where was that, did you now her, is he crazy and so on………….

So in the seminar of 2,5 hours we do maybe 5 techniques.

Also we explain the difference in how a man thinks and how a women thinks.

And as we are clear to men it solves already al lot of problems.

So in general in the seminar and also in the classes we are talking and explaining a lot.

much more as we do with children, because of the concentration part specially with kiddies/kids.

Because women have the intention to blame there selves for what happened to them this is also a very importend thing in the women classes.

We have to teach them that it’s not their fold, not because of how they looked, dressed or said gives a man the right to attack them.

So the women syllabus does not only content krav maga techniques but also a lot of other subjects how to recognize problems and most importend to trust on their inner alarm or intuition.

For my self speaking the WIC/Stay Away course was the hardest thing i did in Krav Maga.

Not by training or techniques but for the mental part.

It was very hard to see what some things what we as men see as normal or natural can be very hard or offending for women.

The KIC otherwise was the greatest course i ever did, it was a lot of fun and it made me a much better instructor also in the normal civil class.

To every instructor that asks me about i tell them they should do it, even when you are never gonna teach kids.

It gives you a great advantence in your methodical skills.

  1. Conclusion

As you have read there are a lot of similarities but also a lot of differences between the women and children syllabus.

But a syllabus is just a syllabus, yo[1]u can also teach a monkey a trick.

A very importent part is the instructor, he must have the correct teaching tools for specific groups.

What i think its really importend that you create the correct environment to teach both the specific groups.

So in the children for example lot of fun and games and for the women most of al empowerment, teach them that it’s not their blame and that they can do something about it, that they are strong.

And specific to the techniques;

Kids and juniors are small adults so the syllabus is also built like that.

Women is a complete different group, because of al the violence to women has to do direct or indirect with sex.

  1. Resource list
  1. CIC syllabus
  2. WIC syllabus 
  3. KIC syllabus

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