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Hilary Swank Keeps Fit With Krav Maga Israeli Self-Defense

Swank Worthy: Krav Maga

On the red carpet yesterday, Oscar veteran Hilary Swank mentioned she was keeping fit with Krav Maga. The name sounds a little like a spell from the Harry Potter series, but the health and fitness nut seems to be expanding her workout repertoire.

Krav Maga is a form of self-defense used by the Israeli army, and "Krav Maga" translates literally from Hebrew to mean "contact combat." Let me tell you, it sounds intense, both mentally and physically. Krav Maga is described as a "practical and tactical system, which teaches how to prevent, deal, and overcome all kinds of violence and attacks." The classes seem extremely physical and are designed to create fatigue using stress drills that help students learn and react under adverse conditions. Sounds really fierce to me.

To see what Hilary has to say about it, just


Hilary explains it like this:

You punch, you kick, you also learn how to get out of a choke hold. I love, love it.

Krav Maga academies are located internationally. If you are interested in studying this form of self-defense, you can find a school near you here. The studio near my house offers two classes for free so you can try it out before buying a class package. Taking a physically intense self-defense class like this sounds like a way to burn some serious calories and learn some important skills at the same time.

Have you tried Krav Maga? Tell me about in the comments section below.


Join The Conversation
DJNellyNel DJNellyNel 8 years
Krav Maga is Amaaaaazing, it's not TOO hard and it's meant for all body types, it doesn't matter your age, size or height. Check out for an AWESOME center in Culver City, CA (Los Angeles county)
jdwhitman jdwhitman 9 years
Hi. For the record, I am actually the Krav Maga instructor who trains Hilary Swank. My name is John Whitman. For a link to instructors who are affiliated with my training, go to The link given is also for legitimate instructors, I just thought you might like to know who actually trains her.
pluckyred pluckyred 9 years
I've been doing it for a couple of years and love it. I echo what JDesiree said. I love putting on my hand wraps and hitting the heavy bag (punches and kicks) when I'm not in class. @tulipsaki: Please don't judge all KM classes by that one. I've taken classes with an assortment of people over the years and all are the opposite of "nutcase" with a variety of temperaments and egos. I'd say it's more effective when the anger issues are secondary because anger can negatively affect technique and make the person practicing more prone to injury (and not in the usual bruising way). ...Oh yes, prepare to bruise and if you wear clothing that make these bruises visible - such as short sleeves - prepare to explain to acquaintances, friends and your mother that you got the bruises in class. :) That all said, like any activity, it's not for everyone. Hey, I hate olives (in this context, metaphorically, but in other contexts I mean that literally).
moss1080 moss1080 9 years
I am looking for a facility in Houston if anyone has info, please pass it along.
kior kior 9 years
I've done KM for about 6 months now and would definitely recommend it to anyone, especially women. The core focus is on brutal and effective strikes to the most vulnerable areas of the body, as such it's perfect self defence for women as there is less emphasis on strength and weight than in many other fighting styles. I go here: in London. I'd say though if you are going to join a club be sure to research all those in your area as the quality is quite variable.
tulipsaki tulipsaki 9 years
I used to do this. Definitely good for self-defense, but filled with nutcases who all crazy-angry. Once I got my anger issues dealt with, I found I hated going to class. Also, if you tend to bulk up from interval and strength work, it will make that happen.
Fooled Fooled 9 years
The Discovery Channel show "Fight Quest" did an episode on Krav Maga recently, I believe. It looks really tough! But if someone is interested in seeing what it looks like, you might want to check and see if that episode is going to be on again sometime (I'm sure it will).
ktgrl1818 ktgrl1818 9 years
sounds fun...i wanna take up kick boxing
JDesiree JDesiree 9 years
I've been doing KM for over two years now here in London with the IKMF (International Krav Maga Federation - the real deal). It's intense, but also immense fun. You'll have to be prepared to have your personal space invaded, be put into a choke hold by a sweaty guy (not my kind of fun, but it makes you even more determined to get out of it!), be punched and kicked and bruised all over at times, but boy, do you get fit, and confident, and much less scared walking home by yourself. You'll learn to defend yourself against multiple attackers, knife threats, gun threats, and train yourself to become more aware of your environment to get out of a situation before it even arises (i.e., avoid the worst case scenario). I can strongly recommend it to every woman! There's a group on facebook, if you want to check it out. It will seem pretty hard core to the uninitiated, but don't be put off - the classes are very friendly despite the subject matter!
lizkiernan lizkiernan 9 years
It's possibly the most useful self defense course you will ever take, but it is also pretty intense. It's about taking your opponent down as fast and as effectively as possible. But the more advanced courses are awesome, they have you training in strobe lighting and fog machines, so you'll be ready for any kind of situation and your moves become instinctive.
aimeeb aimeeb 9 years
Spectra Spectra 9 years
I've always wanted to learn Krav Maga. As soon as I find a gym around here that's teaching a class, I'm signing up.
ley ley 9 years
Its really a seriously practical way to defend yourself you don't need to memorize some crazy moves. Havent tried it would love to. Its also what the military adopted into their regimine, like peachykeen it originally was used on the israeli army.
DreaAST DreaAST 9 years
PeachyKeen19 PeachyKeen19 9 years
Jennifer Lopez trained in Krav Maga for the movie "Enough," it's what the Israeli army uses to train its soldiers.
syako syako 9 years
Sounds interesting. A friend at work recently had her purse snatched out of her arm in a well-lit parking lot at 6:30 at night in our somewhat small town. Perhaps knowing self-defense wouldn't be a bad idea for me...
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