An Interview with Greg Dziewonski, Krav Maga Instructor and Author
by Russ Pritchard
Once again, Greg Dziewonski shows he is one of the premier Krav Maga martial artists in the world. Known for his expertise and extensive travel teaching the Israeli martial art to dojos nationally and internationally while running a chain of successful of martial art studios in his home state of New Jersey, Dziewonski has written the most complete compilation on Krav Maga techniques to date.
Krav Maga Best Techniques: A Complete Guide to Self Defense from Beginner to Expert contains more than 400 pages and approximately 1,000 photographs breaking down each technique into individual steps. “I wanted to create the definitive guide,” says author Dziewonski. “It’s my way of freezing in time all my knowledge to date and sharing it with others because a one hour class, a weekend seminar, or a week long symposium just doesn’t cut it. There is so much to share, and so much yet to learn.” Indeed, Krav Maga Best Techniques covers a lot of ground including self-defense, ground fighting, weapons, and techniques usually reserved for military and law enforcement personnel.
Featured in Black Belt Magazine, Dziewonski is a Senior Instructor under Master Alain Cohen and has trained all over the world, and in addition to being the National Director of the Krav Maga Federation AC for the United States of America, he holds a 4th Degree Black Belt in Krav Maga and a Krav Maga Expert certification from Wingate Institute in Netanya. Dziewonski is also a Certified Law Enforcement, Military, Close Protection, Air Marshal, and Anti-Terrorism Krav Maga Instructor.
Dziewonski began his martial arts journey many years ago studying judo and karate. “I wouldn’t say I got bored, but I was studying techniques that evolved centuries ago to fight men on horseback with long sticks and spears. I was looking for something more based on present day environmental threats. That’s when I tried Krav Maga.” Founded by Imi Lichtenfeld to train the Israel Defense Forces formed after World War II, Krav Maga reflects an urban warfare style of fighting with roots in an under-armed and under-supplied Israeli military with enemies on three sides and water on the fourth. “It was hard for Israel to procure arms after two world wars in less than thirty years which decimated so much of Europe and Asia. People were tired of war; tired of violence,” says Dziewonski. “Lichtenfeld developed an explosive martial art for the Israeli military that relied on hand-to-hand combat and quick incapacitation.”
In his book Krav Maga Best Techniques, and throughout his south Jersey dojos (Performance Krav Maga), and throughout his instructor programs, Dziewonski works to blend traditional Krav Maga techniques with the realties of modern warfare and weaponry which requires an ever-evolving curriculum of physicality and mentality. “I teach that we have three choices when faced with a threat: run, hide, or fight. It’s about situational awareness when confronted with a lethal threat,” proffered Dziewonski. “Threats are real and everywhere. Just watch the evening news. MMA is a sport. One can tap out and stop the fight. In real life when faced with a real threat, there’s no tapping out.” Dziewonski’s posture and tone change from an author being interviewed to a man imbued with a sense of passion and calling to protect others by teaching them how to protect themselves. “Violent threats will never go away. Human beings are predators and always will be. How one reacts, or better how one acts, is the difference.”
I leave Dziewonski with his phone blown up from a cacophony of sounds indicative of text messages, emails, and a number of deferred calls. He tells me he responds personally to every inquiry. It’s his brand; it’s his message; it’s his style of Krav Maga.
For further information on Krav Maga training, instructor training, and where to buy Krav Maga Best Techniques, visit: