Kapap/Krav Maga/Israeli Jiu Jitsu

new article 02092020 w/Avi for Martial Arts Masters Magazine

© Copyright 2020, Avi Nardia & Tim Boehlert

Kapap is a blend of multiple systems, originating in Israel, and by design to be a bridge between systems. It is inspired by the pioneers and of Israel and thier work as the work of Moshe Feldenkrais and is based on Jiu Jitsu.

In 1933, Feldenkrais met Jigoro Kano, the founder of Judo in Paris. Kano encouraged him to study Judo under Mikinosuke Kawaishi. Feldenkrais became a close friend of Kano and corresponded with him regularly. In 1936, he earned a black belt in Judo, and later gained his 2nd degree black belt in 1938. He was a co-founding member of the Ju-Jitsu Club de France, one of the oldest Judo clubs in Europe, which still exists today.

Kapap was developed in Mandatory Palestine by a group of instructors during the 1930’s and 1940’s, where the main body of it was organized and taught. Kapap and Krav Maga remained one and the same until at least 1958.

Krav Maga as a term appeared for the first time in the Israel Defense Force (IDF) in 1965, but in the IDF dictionary of 1965 it was not defined yet and Only  KAPAP – Krav Panim El Panim ( Mean Face t Face combat ) define Hand-to-Hand Combat , use hands knifes rifles guns and Bayonets and any weapons use in face to face combat ( Be transalte as CQB – close quarter Battle )

Krav Maga and Kapap are terms used interchangeably for the same body( as CQB and CQC – Close quarter Combat ) but not always the same knowledge (techniques and drills) in the IDF for the entire decade between 1948-1958.

The hand-to-hand combat curriculum was adopted for the most part from that which was practiced in the Palmach.

Although the term Kapap first appeared in 1940, many of its contents were processed in the 30’s in the ‘operating companies,’ especially in boxing and jujutsu. The short stick fighting method was developed by Moshele Horowitz RIP in the framework of the ‘immigrant camps.’

Key figures in the development of Israeli Martial Arts:

Gershon Kopler

Yitzhak Stiebel

Heinrich Cohen

Emanuel Gil

Kurt Benjamin

Menase Harel

Moshele Horowitz

Yehuda Marcus

Joshua Globerman

Akiva Atzmon

Amos Golani

Musa Finkel

Raphael Atlas

Amnon Yona

Jacob Solomon

Avraham Adan

Micha Perry

Uzi Nemirovsky

Paul Beaver

Imi Lichtenfeld

Giora Shanan

Iftah Zaid

David Levy

In 2000, after no one had used the term KAPAP since the 60th anymore inside or outside of Israel, Avi Nardia established a new self-defense program for the Yamam, Israel’s top Counter-Terrorism unit as the unit’s official instructor and as the unit recruited him to setup a new hand-to-hand combatives program. Avi made the decision to respect the memory of all instructors that were not mentioned before.

He built the KAPAP Federation (IKF ) in 2001 and started to spread the system outside of Israel and later from ONLY one school around Glob today is the most Israeli martial arts known and all over from Japan Thailand Singapore Indonesia and from Asia to Most Europe and Canada and start in be popular at the USA.

Kapap has many respectable beliefs and solid values:

We teach proven techniques, each thoroughly tested and vetted.

We dress according to the mission – gi, or street-clothes.

We have higher standards and higher values and bullies are not amongst our ranks.

We are a ‘normal’ driving school, we’re not a formula one school. Me teach self defense  to Normal civilians and not Ninja

We develop confidence and skill sets, not professional fighters.

We teach by love and peace and friendship and not by fear and bully students as ” Dont be victim ” or by ” we do bad things to bad people ” thats NOT our motto we not teach our students to ego and to be evil or Tacticool or to missed understand self defense and use it as ego – we teach with humble attitude and not “with touch  me and your first class is free” thats wrong attitude

Ours is a school where you can send your wife, your children, to study.

We share knowledge freely.

We teach traditional and modern martial arts.

Kapap is a well-thought-out and researched blend of styles.

We have a ranking system suited for civilians.

We teach respect and discipline.

We use anything that can help us grow into a system.

We analyze all components included. It’s what we do.

We offer videos, but they are not meant to replace actual training or teachers.

We believe that our teachers must know their students and be legit for teach thats why we not sale certificates and demand them to work their way and earn belts and the honor and privilege to teach and lead students , we not try grow the organization more than we can handle in best way to our students need and we demand teaching quality and teaching standard and once not stand for it we are not allowed to teach.

Our teachers must gauge the efficacy of what is taught to their students.

We are a family. We grow together.

In too many training facilities, students are injured by over-enthusiastic instructors that let their egos dictate the lesson plan, often ending up in an emergency room, because as trainers, they were not following good training standards.

Others sell their systems using good and/or bad marketing, depending on your point of view. It’s good marketing, as it relies heavily on people’s fear, and lack of education. There is a market for that. It also preys on their wish to be more than ‘wimps.’ Traditionally, this tactic has worked for years, but that does not make it right, nor good. This marketing tactic ensures income, but at the expense of the students, and in many cases the instructors.

So, why all of the ego, and testosterone? Why the need to sell yourself based on a movie character? Anyone can call themselves an ‘expert’ these days and through effective marketing, they will put many students at risk. Far too many students are paying the price for this dubious marketing trend. In martial arts, all study should start with a good attitude. We must teach the proper attitude and the proper safety. It is our duty as instructors and educators. We teach martial arts. We are martial artists first and

last. With education in traditional martial arts, we wish to make it more ‘real’ to our students. We don’t require military fatigues and helmets to prove our methods and techniques work.

A true teacher is always a student and his attitude must be “always a student, sometimes a teacher,“ and it needs to remain so. As you pick your teacher avoid anyone who represents himself as a grandmaster, for in combat, no-one is a grandmaster.

Kapap is more about teaching people how to live a quality lifestyle and not to live fearing people.

We are not a ‘normal’ Martial Arts training program, because we provide more tools for our students including training in tactical driving, swimming and free-diving and cold weather survival – all components that make Kapap a Modern Martial art.

The KAPAP Gideon Test

Trusting people is the only way to know if you can’t trust them. Our Gideon Test is more of a self-test. Depending upon the person, successful completion of the KAPAP instructor program is either very easy, or else completely impossible.

With enough time and effort, virtually anyone can gain the technical and tactical skills to become a KAPAP instructor. However, the biggest test in KAPAP is to demonstrate integrity – an attribute which candidates either embody completely, or not at all. Those who only seek to collect ego certificates will find our KAPAP program impossible. Thus, we use the Gideon test to distinguish our team members.

At Avi Nardia Academy (ANA) we constantly work to distinguish our Gideon Fighters/Instructors. In order to find those who will lead KAPAP into the future we actively weed out others who only chase certificates and titles but fail to behave like professionals. This constant process ensures that our team maintains the highest standards.

As the founder of KAPAP combatives I lead KAPAP worldwide with a family model. I am very pleased to attract so many good quality members and representatives. Today, 20 years since I first began teaching KAPAP to the public, I am proud to see KAPAP spreading its wings and beginning to soar very high with new members around the world joining my team each day.

I have devoted my life to Martial Arts and hold Black Belts in many different Martial Arts and I continue to explore more and more.

There are not more than five principles in modern Kapap (push and pull, balance displacement, high and low, relative position, two points of contact) yet combinations of them produce more techinques than can ever been seen!

Martial Arts are about love and peace, and being yourself, free of ego, smiling more and enjoying life, as life is Martial Art.

“Keeping an open mind is the most skill I own.” Hanshi Patrick McCarthy

“It is better to be a student of reality, than a master of illusion.”

Avi Nardia

“It’s not the size of your stones, it’s what you build with them.”

Tim Boehlert

Lady death

Kapap Krav Maga, contemporary but yet fully based in traditional martial arts as part of a Self Defense Education has a Fire arm training or how we like to call it a Gun Jutsu – the way of a Gun. Shooting is and extension of a traditional swordsmanship and it is a Martial art as same as a hooting range is a Dojo. Like in old traditional martial arts settings open filed is the best environment for the classes. Here we can draw a parallel and say that a good shooting rage is the one, which provides a great variety of possibilities for the training, and it is not limited in space and movements. The best example is a combative training. In order to build situational awareness a proper facility/shooting range must come with as many obstacles as possible in the filed, from changing positions to high risks entries like kill house games, cover and concealed, bad vision, low light, shooting from cars and so on.  Only and open door shooting range can provide all of those requirements. Indoor shooting range is good to keep and maintain skills during the wintertime but even than my recommendation is to take advantage of all four seasons and train outdoors even if it is snowing.

Firearm has always been a better half of Kapap Krav Maga IJJ. Whilst Jiujutsu and hand-to-hand make one half, shooting and gun skills make the other. Shooting also comes with extra skills requirements in the filed like rappelling, water training, survival, hike and so on. 

With more than 40 years in the security and martial arts field it makes me proud to see more women taking part in the hand-to-hand program as well as in the firearm and field program.

The role of women in 21stcentury is comes with a new understanding of gender studies and learning from the history of many powerful and inspiring women that have shaped the destiny of this planet. We can see that in the ancient times the role of a women has differed from culture to culture and while the role of a warrior has been predominantly associated with a male figures there have been historically important women who were actively participating in different warfare’s and battles. They were not only a behind the scene characters dwelling in palaces and chambers as mothers, queens, lovers or old wise women. 

Great amount of my understanding of Martial Arts comes from the Far East and learning to know that female warriors are one of the greatest untold narratives in the samurai history. But over a span of couple of centuries female samurai warriors were found on battlefields fighting besides men with fierce and bravery. Female samurai warriors were highly trained in the martial arts. They were taught to use sword, the naginata and the bow and arrow mostly to protect themselves so we can say that this was part of self defense and primarily defensive in nature. 

What set Tomoe Gozen as a fearsome 12thcentury Japanese female warrior apart from her fellow warrior women that instead of defensive she was offensive. She became an icon due to her fierce determination as a warrior. Tomoe has disappeared from history and her fate has been speculated by many generations to come. 

Lets move to some recent history and to Lyudmila Pavlichenko that many people do not know her name. She was a Soviet sniper in the Red Army during the Second World War; credited with more than 300 confirmed kills what makes he one of the most successful sniper in recorded history. For example, officer Chris Kyle, US Navy Seal, who served during the war in Iraq, was the most lethal sniper shooter in US military history credited with over 160 kills officially. 

Lydmila Pavlichenko started her sniper carier at the age of ten when she joined a shooting club not being able to tolerate braging of a neighbor’s son how good shooter he was. She said that she joined the shooting club to show that girl could do as well as him. Later on she has earned a sobriquet “Lady Death” for a good reason. In her speech in United States she said that she was 25 years old and killed 309 fascist ocupant and than reportedly told “Don’t you think, gentlemn, that you have been hiding behind my back for too long?”

Women are more and more encouraged to take part in different combat programs. One of the examples is Israeli Army who has always supported women as fighters and had them as part of the team from Navy Seal, YAMAM to Pilot program and in many different units.  There are many women in Avi Nardia Academy in KAPAP Krav Maga training and other martial arts programs as well. What we can see is that lately more women take part in the shooting program as part of their self-defense classes but many of them take it as a sport and become excelent shooters and competitors. Lydmila Pavlichenco would have been definitely proud of them as same as many other strong female characters who were writing new pages in history. Women empowerment comes in different shapes and what we do is to provide right tools and safe space for women to feel empowered and tackle every day life with confidence and awarenes. 

Women narrative is changing and learning from history we can find a value in the way martial arts and self-defense provides recognition of the complexities of what it means to be a woman and illuminate our understanding of women in contemporary afairs.