Teaching a Krav Maga session with a mixed group of trainees at different skill levels can be challenging. While an ideal class consists of homogeneous levels, real-life situations often demand a compromise. In this article, we’ll explore a tactical system to conduct multi-level lessons, allowing all participants to benefit from the training while recognizing the necessity of its use.
The Dilemma of Mixed Lessons
Mixing trainees of varying skill levels in a single class can lead to dissatisfaction among participants. Beginners may struggle with complex techniques meant for advanced students, while advanced students may feel unchallenged when focusing on introductory material. A solution is required to provide effective training without leaving anyone behind.
The Multi-Level Lesson System
The multi-level lesson system is designed to offer a compromise in situations where mixed classes are necessary. Although not ideal for long-term practice, it serves as a temporary measure until a more homogeneous class is possible.
- Choosing Appropriate Techniques
Select techniques that can be combined logically to suit multiple skill levels. Group techniques in three ways:
– Horizontal: Techniques within the same area, such as defenses at the neck level.
– Vertical: Techniques addressing the same problem with different skill levels.
– Cross-border: Techniques and solutions combined, accommodating different proficiency levels.
- Uniform Warm-Up
Begin with a warm-up suitable for all trainees, based on the techniques to be covered in the lesson. Ensure that the warm-up benefits participants at different skill levels.
- The Ping Pong Ball Instructor
Designate the advanced group as (A) and the beginners’ group as (B). To keep everyone active, use the new technique for group (B) as a review for group (A). While group (A) practices the review technique, instruct group (B) on the new technique, following KMG’s teaching method.
- Timed Partner Drills
Once group (B) is familiar with the new technique, have them practice partner drills in timed alternations. Meanwhile, move to group (A) and introduce a new technique, repeating the teaching cycle.
- Summary Drill: Separate or Integrated?
For the summary drill, it’s simpler to keep the groups separate. Provide identical drills but differentiate techniques based on the lesson’s content. Alternatively, you can integrate the groups with more preparation, ensuring both groups perform compatible techniques.
Benefits and Limitations
The multi-level lesson system offers an immediate solution for mixed classes, but it’s crucial to recognize its temporary nature. Experimenting with this approach can be beneficial, especially if you have the support of another instructor or an assistant. Combining levels occasionally has advantages, motivating beginners by showing them the path ahead and reminding advanced students of their progress.
When faced with mixed skill levels in a KMG class, the tactical approach of the multi-level lesson system can ensure effective training for all participants. While it may not be ideal for the long term, it serves as a valuable compromise until homogeneous classes are possible. Utilize this system responsibly, always striving for a more focused and specialized training environment. Remember to have fun during your sessions and stay motivated on your KMG journey. Happy training!