Mark Harvey

I trained in Tae Kwon Do for about 5 years in my early 20’s, but gave up when I moved to London. Over the past couple of years I have wanted to take up martial arts again, but only the practical side rather than relearning all the Tae Kwon Patterns.

The Self defence side has always interested me and after doing some research into Krav Maga it sounded exactly what I wanted. Being in my 40’s I didn’t want a sport oriented martial art, just something extremely practical that I could build up a knowledge over the coming years to protect both myself and my family should they ever arise.

I found Carpe Diem via a web search and as it was the closest club to me booked up for a trail session. I wasn’t sure what to expect after having such a long break from martial arts, and found the first class a friendly fun environment and learned some techniques that were really practical. I didn’t hesitate signing up as a member as I was positive it was the right club for me to learn new skills.


“Carpe Diem is a fun, friendly environment where I’m learning practical self defence skills in each class.”


I’m really enjoying my training and feel I have learnt a lot in the past 8 months. Haitham mixes up the warm ups to keep things interesting, and each class is structured-building up the techniques slowly. Sometimes I have no idea where he’s going at the start of the class, but it all comes together and makes sense by the end.

I have learnt a number of basic techniques, both physical and non confrontational to help with a variety of scenarios. Krav has taught me that there are no rules in defending yourself, it’s not a sport, and there are a number of ways to get yourself out of trouble – whether that be fighting fire with fire, or getting away from the situation as quickly and safely as possible without violence.

I really enjoyed the first grading, and it was great to be tested on what has been learnt so far and to see what’s to come in order to progress.

I feel that I’ve learnt some new skills over the past 8 months, but I’m only at the start of my Krav journey. There’s years of fun ahead learning more of the basics and hopefully moving on to advanced techniques when I’m ready!