The art of Krav Maga was founded by Imi Lichtenfeld (Sde – Or). When anti-Semite riots began to spread throughout his hometown in Bratislava, Imi and his family were forced to immigrate to Israel (Palestine at the time).

Based on his experience and his work with special forces units as the Hagana, Palmach, and Palyam, the Israeli Defense Force officials requested Imi to develop a system of self defense and fighting.

Imi carefully refined the methods of Krav Maga, making it the official combative training for all military personnel, Israeli police and security forces. Imi developed a doctrine enabling both fit and out-of-shape soldiers to practice it successfully.

When Imi retired from the Israeli Defense Force and continued to teach Krav Maga to civilians and law enforcement units. As Krav Maga expanded beyond the borders of Israel, the International Krav Maga Federation was formed. Once the IKMF was formed, all Expert and Master Dimplomas, grades and levels issued were authorized by Imi as well as the IKMF curriculum.

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