Member Spotlight: Ryan

Name: Ryan Hetzel

Rank: P1

Years of Experience:  January ’19

What I do for a living:  Insurance Underwriter

What Krav Maga training means to me: Being prepared and being confident.  I’ve never been in a real fight in my life, and I’d be perfectly happy to keep that streak going.  That being said, in the short time that I’ve been working with Wayne and the rest of the folks at Elite Krav Maga, I’ve already become much more confident that I’d be able to handle myself in a bad situation if I needed to.  You don’t buy a fire extinguisher or smoke detectors because you’re planning on having a house fire.  You buy them so that you’re prepared in case the worst should happen.  I see similar value in training.

What made me want to start training:  I have been active for years, and was initially just looking for a more interesting way to train besides running and lifting.  Now that I’ve been training for a while, I’ve come to realize how important it is to be aware of your surroundings and prepared to deal with what comes at you.  It’s definitely more than just a fun way to get in shape…

What has my training experience been like at Elite Krav Maga:  In a word: Real.  Wayne is great, and class is fun, but he’s not looking to sugarcoat anything.  He’s working, every day, to make sure that you are capable of handling yourself in a bad situation.  Yes, you learn technique, but he also makes sure to illustrate why it works (or why it might not), when it’s appropriate, the mindset you might be under in that situation, etc.  Beyond that, I can’t say enough about the people who train here.  Everyone is supportive, and everyone demonstrates an interest in helping make everyone else better.  I couldn’t have chosen a nicer group of people to punch me in the face…

Is this type of training for everyone: Everyone can benefit from this type of training, but that being said, I can’t say that this is for everyone.  You have to be able to leave your ego at the door, be receptive to coaching, and be able to keep in mind why you are here in order to get the most out of the class. 

The biggest benefit of training Krav Maga:  Beyond the obvious benefits of self-defense and fitness, the “stress testing” that you go through in sparring and other drills is of huge psychological benefit.  We have these sessions where, for 90 seconds to 3 minutes, your mind and body have to be able to react to unpredictable stimuli in a simulated “survival” scenario where you can’t stop to think or take a breath.  Knowing what that is like, and feeling yourself get better every time, gives you a great sense of confidence and being capable. 

What do people say to me when I tell them I train Krav Maga:  “How do you spell that?”

What do I like to do when I’m not training:  I spend a lot of time with my wife and son, walking/hiking with my dog, and generally taking every opportunity to be outdoors.

Please join our TEAM! or call 610.203.1409

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