Krav Maga is an Israeli martial art derived from a combination of aikido, judo, karate, boxing, and wrestling techniques. Based on simple principles and instinctive movements, it is designed to teach real self-defense in a simple, effective manner. 

It likely sounds pretty intimidating if you’ve never been to a Krav Maga class. You may think, “I’m just going to get beat up,” or “I’ve never done anything like this. I can’t start now.” 

Sam Pike is looking to change that mentality. 

Owner of Endurance Krav Maga, Sam Pike, 52, has taught Krav Maga for 20 years. The Montana native and father of Samuel, Sam moved to Memphis in 1992. He began martial arts training with Master Kang Rhee, the famed Karate Grand Master who taught Elvis martial arts. 

After training with Kang for years and getting his second-degree black belt, Sam decided to explore non-traditional martial arts. Krav Maga spoke to him. He felt strongly that he could take the Krav Maga teachings and pass them along to people who really needed them. 

Thus, Endurance Krav Maga was born in 2011, offering a mix of Krav Maga classes focused on self-defense, kettlebell fitness classes, and fitness kickboxing sessions. 

The ethos of Sam’s studio is simple yet powerful: everyone has the right to defend themselves. That’s why Sam is so passionate about making Krav Maga accessible to everyone. 

“Our fundamentals of self-defense classes are designed to be user-friendly and meet people where they are,” Sam explains. 

I was lucky enough to attend one of Sam’s fundamentals of self-defense classes. I was the epitome of someone with no experience and was extremely nervous walking through the door. 

Sam and his incredible team of instructors created such a comfortable environment that I felt right at home ten minutes into the class. And even though I didn’t know anyone in the class, everyone was supportive and welcoming. 

I walked in, nervous and unsure, and left feeling empowered and strong, armed with new knowledge of how to keep myself safe. 

As Sam explained, “I teach more than self-defense. I’m teaching self-confidence and self-esteem.” 

This mantra is exemplified through Sam’s non-profit organization, Fighting Chance with Endurance Krav Maga. Fighting Chance offers self-defense seminars and private training to victims of domestic violence and human trafficking. 

Sam feels strongly that these individuals deserve to feel safe, and through Fighting Chance, he and his team can empower the community with self-defense techniques and help build up their self-esteem. 

Sam told me about one client who broke down when he brushed past her shoulder during her first class. A few months later, she defended herself from being choked in class as the rest of the class erupted in cheers, knowing what a huge milestone she had overcome thanks to Krav Maga. 

“I can’t emphasize this enough – anyone can do this, and everyone reading this has the right to learn how to defend themselves,” Sam says passionately. 

Are you interested in trying Krav Maga? Try a class for free. Keep up with Endurance Krav Maga on IG @endurancekravmaga.