Article by Gossip TV Greece
Published September 30, 2014
He is the one of the most famous istructors of Martial Art Karv Maga in the world. Roy Elghanayan trains special forces around the world, famous actors how to be realistic in an action movie fight scenes and common people how to defend themselves in case of danger. His pass from Greece for a seminar of Krav Maga organized from Krav Maga Club was so successful that it’s going to be repeated in a few months. Meeting with him at Krav Maga Club in Kifisia was a discovery for us. With all his achievements –and they are so many- we thought he would be older. Roy Elghanayan is only 29 years old. He has a great sense of humor, absolutely professional, friendly and kind he spoke to us about his love to Krav Maga and martial arts.
-You are one of the most famous instructors of Israeli Martial Art Krav Maga. What exactly is Krav Maga? In Greece it’s not very well know.
“Krav Maga is the official self defense system that was design for the military of Israel, so this is the main fighting technique and fighting method that is used by the Israel military. Mostly by Special Forces. Krav means fight or battle and Maga means contact.”
-It is considered as a new martial art as it was created in the past 50 years, form Imi Lihtenfeld in Israel and for many many years it has been taught only in Israel.
“Krav was created within around 1940s and was still being developed for many years. Until now it always being improved.”
-How did you find out about Krav Maga and what made you to get involved with it?
“When I was a kid my mom took me to learn self defense. How to protect myself. How to be strong mentally and physically. How to control my anger.”
– Why she chose Krav Maga?
“ I think when she chose Krav Maga she didn’t know exactly if is Krav Maga or Karate. She didn’t know the difference, but it had a great reputation. Otherwise for Maga, I’ve been learning will also Krav Maga, Israel Ju jitsu and mixed martial arts (MMA).”
– I’ve read about Krav Maga that it was created by the need of Israeli troops to learn basic self defense in a very short period of time. Why is it easier to learn? Is it simpler than other martial arts?
“It’s the simpler. It’s based on our natural instincts a based on physics. Basically using things that you know that will work. Is not that easy and simply as it sounds . It takes time, experience and training. But it’s easier.”
-What is the right age for a kid to start learning?
“If it is Krav Maga, I would say propably the age of 8 to start the fundamentals, but for example me I teach from the age of 3, I teach them Krav Maga. I teach them discipline.”
-How easy is to learn to a 3 years old to be disciplined and not hurt each other?
“They don’t learn the dangerous skills. They learn exercises. Get on your knees. Put your hands up. Put your hands down. Freeze. All these things. To be alert.”
-In all of these years of your experience have you seen talents in kids that there going be in the future very good athletes?
“Yes. All the time. All the time I see kids or teenagers, adults, many many women have lot of potential. If they don’t reach their potential because of their mind.”
-You are talking about fear…
“Yes exactly. Fear. Their mind is weak. They don’t understand the potential. They don’t understand what they can achieve . For kids is easier because they have no fear . So the parents need to be strong and teach the kid not to be afraid to do everything, we have to do and why.”
-I’ve seen an interview of Jessica Chastain speaking about her training with you for the movie “The Debt”. Are you training a lot of an actor for movies?
“I train every month a different and every year a different. Of course I train different actors that come to me, some of them they are not so famous yet, and just like Jessica Chastain when she came to me she wasn’t famous. After “The Debt” she became famous.”
– Do you also advice more the directors about the movies?
“I do a lot of this more and then I work with actors, not in bases but in different cases when they need me.”
– How easy is for you to do that, because I think for someone doesn’t have any relation with Martial Art is not easy to teach him to be realistic when he acts.
“When it comes to that if we have time, we teach them the real basics, real simple and then we start going to choreography, so is very customize and focusing on the moves. So that is all you got to know eventually. It’s choreography. With Jessica Chastain it was different. We did 4 months of traning.”
-So she knows how to protect herself.
“She can protect herself now and whoever is next to her. Jessica did had the opportunity to learn more than the fight choreography of the scene at the same time because we had a lot of time. 4 months of training . It’s a lot of hours, and she worked hard too. She is good actress, great person, very nice, loving.”
-With your many years of experience why would you recommend to a person to learn Krav Maga?
“First of all is Self defense. Second is a great workout.”
-Is there an age limit for someone that wants to learn?
“No. I have student to age of 74. The start at the age of 70 and they are in good shape. They look like 55 of 60.”
-You are the only two times National Champion of Krav Maga. I suppose that an achievement like that comes with hard work. How many hours do you train every day?
“I train every day about 3 ½ hours – 4 hours. I train 1 ½ hours myself and also I train the students here.”
-Martial Arts need discipline. Do you have discipline also in your life?
“Of course. We always have room to be more. The key to success is discipline.”
-You came to Greece for one seminar of Krav Maga organized by the Krav Maga Club. Were you satisfied of the level you found here?
“I think is a good level, and they have a lot of potential, and they are the ONLY school I would go to if I would be living in Greece! It was better than I was expected. They have good teacher, Michael, at the Krav Maga Club so we are really excited to work with them. Now we are negotiating a partnership for opening, for transforming this club to REKM (Roy Elghanayan’s Krav Maga) Club. It will be the first one in Europe.”
-Was it your first time in our country?
“Yes. First time. It was nice, pretty and clean. The food is amazing.”
-What did you like most?