In legal terms, self-defense is the right to use reasonable force to protect oneself or members of the family from bodily harm, or to a lesser extent, one's property, from the attack of an aggressor, if the defender has reason to believe he/she/they is/are in danger. The force used in self-defense may be sufficient for protection from apparent harm (not just an empty verbal threat) or to halt any danger from attack, but cannot be an excuse to continue the attack or use excessive force. ​

This is a general definition of self-defense, however each country has its own definition and legal framework for application.

Use of Krav Maga for self-defense


In what circumstances may I use Krav Maga to defend myself or my family?

​You can consider that you (and/or your family) are in danger if:
- The aggressor has the intention to attack you
- The aggressor has the ability to harm you
- The aggressor has the tools to harm you; usually a knife, a stick, a stone, a bottle, a gun. However hands and legs and even the head can also be considered as tools when used for the sake of causing harm to others.

In such situation, after you have tried to de-escalate the situation and only if you cannot escape, then you can use your Krav Maga to defend yourself. 

As a civilian, once you get into the fight, there are 2 points extremely important to keep in mind:
- The first one is don't get killed
- The second one is don't kill the aggressor