GREENVILLE — On Saturday, Feb. 4, IKI Krav Maga instructor Aaron Olson will hold a self-defense clinic at Final Bow, 116 E. 3rd Street, Greenville. The three-hour course is scheduled from 9 a.m. until noon and welcomes adults and children, ages 10 and up. Cost is $35 per participant with registration available at www.finalbow.org.
Olson, a seasoned black-belt level instructor, explained, “Guns, chokes, holds and grabs can feel like daunting threats. Truthfully, they are. However, with Krav Maga we use easy-to-remember gross motor movement techniques that can help save your life against these threats.”
He continued, “The techniques we use and teach are used by the U.S. Special Forces, the FBI, SWAT Teams, Presidential Guards, German Navy Commandos, countless civilians, and many more.”
“It doesn’t matter what your skill level is or how athletic you are. A lot of it has to do with mindset and a willingness to not be a victim,” Olson explained.
Olson and fellow instructor, Caitlyn, visited Final Bow’s Strength and Conditioning class in November where the students “got their self defense on with kickboxing,” and “the class begged for more!” Thus, the February clinic was born.
Olson said, “It was a blast working with these dance students. I know we, as instructors, look for any and every opportunity we can to pass along this skill set.”
Olson spoke to The Daily Advocate in a 2019 interview, when he first began holding community self-defense classes. “Most forms of self-defense training are what I would classify as ‘martial arts,’” Olson said, “meaning they’re more sport than self-defense.”
In contrast, according to Olson, there’s very little element of sport to Krav Maga, which is Hebrew for “close-quarter combat.” Krav Maga incorporates techniques from wrestling and boxing, as well as the martial arts karate, aikido, and judo; however, its focus is on practicing extreme efficiency in real-world situations, making it ideal for self-defense.
“This is self-defense in its rawest form,” Olson said. “It’s a very aggressive form of self-defense.”
However, even as a highly trained individual, Olson was quick to say, “Check your ego at the door.”
He explained self defense advocates AAPC: avoidance, ability, purpose, and circumstance.
The first order of business is actually avoidance. “Running is okay. Any fight you can walk away from is a win,” said Olson.
Next comes ability, which focuses on each individual student’s physical capabilities and level of proficiency.
Then, purpose: What are you trying to achieve? What is your assailant’s purpose?
Finally, there’s circumstance. “Where are you?” Olson said. “In an alley? In Walmart? At the library? What’s going on around you?”
All these factors, said Olson, will affect the course of action during a violent encounter.
Olson’s main focus is to make his students feel safe. “I want them to feel more empowered than they did when they came in,” Olson said. “People need to be able to defend themselves,” said Olson. “It’s gonna sound cheesy, but honestly, if I save one life, it’s worth it.”
Olson, NASM certified, currently offers personal training, self-defense, and nutrition coaching at Snap Fitness 24/7. Visit www.snapfitness.com and choose the Greenville, Ohio, location to reach Olson or for more information on available services.