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Rencounter KM second year anniversary

Thanks to everyone who came to the pub brawl this weekend. It was a lot of fun, and great to watch the energy and enthusiasm you all brought to it! I hope you all learned something useful, and just as important, had a great time.

I had intended to organize the pub brawl in April, to mark the 2 year anniversary of the start of the classes, but I've not been able to fit it in until now. Last year I took a moment to look back on the first year of Rencounter Krav Maga and how much the school had developed. This year I've been too busy running the school and planning various projects to stop and appreciate how much has happened.

April last year was an important milestone. When I was planning to start my own school and to do this full time, at the beginning of 2015, I set 1 year as the time I would give myself before deciding whether to continue, or to quit and get a "real" job. No matter how things were going or how many doubts I had, I would not give up before that. I'm very glad I set that deadline, because I had many doubts in that first year: I asked myself many times "what am I doing?" "Who am I kidding, thinking I could actually do this?". But when April 2016 came, I didn't have to consider whether to continue with the school or not, only, "what exciting new plans do I make for Rencounter Krav Maga this year?".

KMG Scotland P-Weekend Tired but happy, RKM team at the KMG Scotland P-Weekend, November 2016

The intensive training weekend last summer was a new challenge. It was the second time I ran it, but this time I had two groups: beginners and intermediate/advanced. So far I had taught a lot of classes on my own and together with other instructors, but this meant organizing two groups so that there was no overlap between the equipment needed for each, or the instructors needed to teach each subject. I needed all the stress management techniques I knew that weekend. It all worked out well luckily, and the feedback afterwards was very good. I feel a lot more prepared for juggling the different groups this year. So this year it will be longer, have more instructors, and more training areas to co-ordinate.

I have had good help from Rob, Peter, and Stevie, to cover classes so that that I've been able to go on courses, train, and even go on holiday in the last year. I would probably have gone a little bit insane without them. I really enjoy teaching, but I need to have the energy for it, and time to cover my other responsibilities. Rob has now joined Rencounter on a regular irregular basis. This is great, not just because it gives me time off on occasion, but because it adds another very skilled instructor who has different knowledge and areas of expertise than my own. I think it's extremely useful to learn from different instructors, because everyone has a different focus. Even if all KMG instructors have the same core training, we emphasize different things.

I have taught a number of workshops in the last year. A couple together with Susan Chalmers, as the KMG Scotland Women's division, as well as external workshops and seminars with student societies, youth groups, and private sessions. When I say that I do this full time, people sometimes ask what do I do the rest of the time, when I'm not teaching classes. I can tell you that there is plenty to do: lack of time is my problem, not a lack of things to do. The first year of RKM I had to come up with ideas for what to do. The second year I've struggled to find time for the ideas that I have.

KMG Women's division KMG Scotland Women's Division —if you were in doubt, Susan is the boss

Since February this year the intermediate group has grown in size equal to, or even larger than the group of beginners, and the intermediate classes have now been a lot busier than before. This is really nice to see. We also have advanced sessions now, on a slightly irregular basis, as more people have reached an advanced level.

I'm very happy that the school is growing and more people are becoming part of the krav maga community. After the first year I was really impressed by what an amazing group of people my members were. And a year later, and twice as many people, I'm thinking exactly the same. I look at how everyone is learning and growing, all the effort and commitment you put into your training, big personal development for some, and all the energy and humour you bring to classes. And I can't help feeling proud of you all. I think about all the people who come to my classes, and it's quite a few now, and I just think "I like these people!".

And I suppose you have half my motivation for doing this right there. Getting to work with a group of people that I actually like, and enjoy spending time with.

The other half of my motivation comes from seeing you all learn, develop, and grow. And to see that the work I do has some positive impact on people's lives, watching you use the tools and knowledge you get in classes to become even more awesome versions of yourselves. More hard-hitting, more confident, fitter, happier, feeling safer, belonging. Whichever part krav maga plays in your life.

Thank you all for being awesome people, and for being part of Rencounter Krav Maga!


Pub brawl, 2017 edition Our second pub brawl!

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