An IKI certified Black Belt Krav Maga instructor, Colby Taylor founded Covenant Defense in 2013. Covenant Defense is the fulfillment Taylor’s calling to serve God and others.
With a degree in Exercise Physiology, Taylor spent three years at the Mayo Clinic in the physical therapy program. Passionate about preventative healthcare, not disease management, he sought to understand and practice principles of natural wellness. He left the Mayo Clinic and moved to Chapel Hill, North Carolina, where he launched Bodies in Balance, a company focused on physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual wellness.
Bodies in Balance grew rapidly. Taylor soon found himself managing a business instead of helping people on a personal level. In June of 2000, he visited Traverse City, Michigan, where he was reminded of his first passion – ministering God’s love to others.
Throughout college and grad school, Taylor had been heavily involved as a leader in Young Life, a high-adventure relational youth ministry. In July 2000, he closed Bodies in Balance and moved to northern Michigan to once again with work and minister to young adults. Taylor also began working in music ministry, men’s discipleship, and counseling. He attended the Toronto Airport Christian Fellowship School of Music, and worked as a worship leader and assistant pastor until 2004.
After stepping away from full time ministry for a season, Taylor became more aware of and concerned about international issues, specifically the increase in terrorist activities and the obliviousness of the general population. “It was as if something changed inside me, and I had to learn all that I could about what was going on in the world,” said Taylor. “I became enthralled with defense and security issues.”
Taylor noticed one main vulnerability in his community, region, and state – a lack of understanding about the seriousness and expansiveness of the threats around them.
He focused his energy in two areas that would best help him serve his family and neighbors: education and defense. Taylor began observing and studying the state of the financial industry, food production, education, politics, and medicine. He also looked for the most effective ways to protect his home and family. That led him to Israel’s methods of defense and security, specifically the study of Krav Maga, the official self-defense system of the Israeli Defense Forces.
Taylor earned his Krav Maga certification and ranking from Moshe Katz, the founder and head instructor of Israeli Krav International (IKI) in Israel. While in Israel Taylor also got specialty training in counter-terrorism, VIP protection and close quarters shooting from an elite training group known as Caliber 3. Taylor has also studied and trained with Craig Gray, founder of Ronin Martial Arts Academy in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Craig is the highest ranking IKI Krav Maga practitioner and instructor outside of Israel. He’s spent more than thirty years training in martial arts, and he teaches executive protection, professional security, and military and law enforcement techniques. He’s also served as a mentor to Taylor.
Through his connections with IKI, Caliber 3 and Ronin Martial Arts Academy, Taylor has learned and developed the techniques needed for personal and corporate protection, including the following areas of focus:
Taylor’s desire to learn and teach his techniques stems from his love for his family and community. Covenant Defense is his way to help educate and prepare like-minded people who have a passion for living in covenant with each other and God.
“I’m doing this because of my love for God and His body,” said Taylor. “I train and teach because I want to protect the precious gift of life that God has given us. When I hear about people being abused or killed, I am deeply troubled. My reaction is to train harder, teach more, and reach out further to help protect life.”