Founder of Aiki Krav Maga
Ami Niv has immigrated to Israel with his family from Caucus (at the time- part of the U.S.S R) when Ami was eight years old. These immigrants and especially their children faced many difficulties settling in the country. As a young child, Ami had to face stereotypes, racism, verbal and physical abuse. The struggle of growing up under these conditions has helped him become a mentally strong individual and has taught Ami what are the ‘rules of the street’ when encountering verbal or physical violence.
A short time after arriving to Israel, Ami started training in Judo and Jiu-Jitsu and when he turned 16 has discovered Krav-Maga and in the last ten years of Imi Lichtenfeld, the founder of the Krav- Maga martial art Ami Niv was one of the closest students.
Ami joined the IDF (Israeli defense forces) when he was 18 and served 3 years as a fitness and self-defense instructor. In his service he designed and implemented self-defense courses for female soldiers as well as hand to hand combat instruction for some of the IDF’s Special Forces units, each unit to its special requirements. Through the years and to this day, Ami was involved in various projects (military and civil) designed to give solutions to security issues. These programs, in which Ami instructs the hand to hand combat component included anti-terror defense of public transportation such as planes, trains and buses, defense of schools, public and government institutions which are vulnerable to terror or criminal activity. Ami is well respected and considered one of the top experts in this field.
Following his military service and addition to his involvement in security projects, Ami has opened his first Krav-Maga school focusing mainly on the instruction of children. Through years of consistency and determination Ami has become known for his ‘educational way’, which could be shortly described as strict, aggressive and demanding during training and a fatherly figure off the mat, always willing to help his students in all aspects of life. In addition, Ami has kept his own development and training in Krav-Maga becoming a well known figure in the Krav- Maga martial art scene. During this time Ami has become closer to Imi Lichtenfeld and would spend hours with him in philosophical and professional discussions concerning the basic principles of ‘street’ self-defense and he even got Emi blessing to establish a new martial art method – “Aiki Krav Maga”
Through years of training Ami began feeling there is a missing component in the Krav-Maga martial art, a component emphasizing more inner peace and harmony to counter the aggressive and harshness character of Krav- Maga. The answer to Ami’s quest was discovered after participating in various martial art seminars in Europe, in the form of the Aikido martial art (a ‘soft’ martial art that flows with the force of an opponent’s attack and uses this force against the aggressor) and begun training under Edmond Karen (7th degree red white belt in Takemusu Iwama Ryu Aikido). Following two years of intense training in seminars and private lessons from Edmond himself, Ami had earned his black belt in Aikido.
Following Ami’s exposure to Aikido and ongoing seminars in Aikijitsu and Jiu-jitsu, he has started to form a new personal approach to martial arts. From a technical point of view this approach combines elements from the Krav- Maga, Aikido and Jiu-jitsu. From an educational perspective he strived to pass down to his students the combination of the determination and aggressiveness typical to Krav- Maga with the peacefulness and harmony of Aikido. At a relatively young age, Ami’s ideas have led him to branch out of the Krav-Maga and form a new system called Aiki – Krav Maga.
Today, Ami lives in Israel with his wife and three kids. He holds an Ms.c in sociology and sport administration and a graduate of martial arts coaching program from the Wingate institute in Israel (the Israeli national sport institute). Ami is a 7th degree red white belt in the Aiki – Krav Maga martial art federation and is internationally recognized as the founder of the Aiki – Krav Maga system. Currently, he teaches Aiki – Krav Maga and Aikido to his black belts and Aikido students and looks over the instruction of the Aiki – Krav Maga branches, as well as participating in national and international seminars honorably representing Aiki – Krav Maga and the state of Israel.
Aiki – Krav Maga- Mission Statement At ‘Aiki – Krav Maga- Israeli Martial Arts Federation’ we educate and train students to counter verbal and physical violence and help decrease violence in our community. Aiki – Krav Maga is a martial art method aiming to train students in self-defense through teaching efficient techniques to counter “street violence” and increasing ones physical and mental abilities. The Aiki – Krav Maga method strives to reach a balance between teaching our students values of respect for self and others, kindness, helpfulness, loyalty and humility, with the ability to counter physical violence or an attack by responding fast, efficient and in a purposeful manner in order to end the violence with minimum physical injuries.