The Finnish national style was born in 2014-2015, when the Finnish Krav Maga Federation, with the support of the Ministry of Education and Culture, developed a national belt test system for children and young people. Until then, krav maga had been a “K-18” sport mainly available to adults. The children and youth belt test system was a natural extension of the adult belt test system introduced in 2016.
The need for a national style was also recognised, as the training and licensing associated with the introduction of international styles is quite valuable from the perspective of the individual sports club. A national style provides a simple and easy way for sports clubs to introduce krav maga into their selection of sports. For coach training, the National Style relies on the Finnish Krav Maga Federation’s coach and instructor training programmes at levels I-III.
The Finnish way of practising krav maga has always been very straightforward. It has always adapted to its user without forcing everyone into the same mould. The main principles have been the following in the dna of krav maga:” Similar attack, similar solution” and “Act as early as possible, as efficiently as possible”. These principles are at the core of the style.
Krav Maga has been in Finland for more than 20 years and our society has undergone great changes. One important thing in self-defence is legality. Bringing this into the training is a very demanding part and a big challenge for the skills of coaches and instructors. But it is also a technical issue.
If a physical self-defence situation has not been avoided, physical defence must cease when the unlawful attack has ended. This is why the training places more emphasis on controlling the situation and controlling one’s own actions.