Skip to main content Skip to main content

The Rules for Knife Attack Defense

The Rules for Knife Attack Defense

Over many years of martial arts training, I have seen some horrible techniques in knife attack defense. I've spotted well respected instructors teaching and advocating techniques that looked good against a compliant partner, but in no way would work against a knife-wielding maniac. Just the other day, I heard two guys discussing how to take on an assailant with a knife. One was talking discussing how he could kick the knife out of the bad guy's hand, and the other said he could block the strike and then knock the attacker out. Similar conversations can be heard in and out of the self-defense community. There's more to these situations than meets the eye quite often, and it's good to listen to different perspectives on the subject.

Self-defense instructor Paul Vuncak makes a great point with his beef slash demonstration. He says that simply trying to take a knife on shouldn't be your first instinct. Matter of fact, you'll be cut and, most likely, very badly. All techniques must take this into account. In my opinion, there is only one way to train against knife attacks (it is understood in this scenario that I do not have a firearm).

Rule No. 1:  RUN.  Get as far away from the individual as possible. The good thing about knives is they have limited reach.

Rule No. 2: If you cannot run, put a stationary object between you and the attacker. Find a car, wall, large piece of furniture....something.


Rule No. 3: If you cannot run and there is nothing to put in between, pick something up and start swinging.  Try to even up the odds, find a stick, chair or a blunt object of some kind to make him think twice about getting close.


Rule No. 4: If the previous rules are not applicable, then follow the principles of Clear, Close, Control and Capture. Clear all your vitals from the path of the blade. Close the distance by jamming yourself super tight against them, so the attacker cannot swing or stab with the blade again. Control the arm holding the knife as close to the hand as possible. Capture the weapon by any means necessary. That means biting, clawing , striking , spitting, hitting, smashing; whatever it takes to extract it away from the attacker.

As a good experiment, give a person a marker and tell them they can mark you up as much as possible before you take it away. See what happens. It's often a real eye opener.  Have you considered how you would handle a knife attack without a gun?  What are some crazy techniques you have seen?

Stay safe.

Current Magazine Cover

Enjoy articles like this?

Subscribe to the magazine.

Get access to everything Guns & Ammo has to offer.
Subscribe to the Magazine

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

Popular Videos

Guns & Ammo TV: 6.5 Creedmoor vs. .375 H&H

Guns & Ammo TV: 6.5 Creedmoor vs. .375 H&H

The 6.5 Creedmoor and the .375 H&H are almost complete opposites, or are they? The 6.5 Creedmoor is a newer and popular cartridge that transcends long-range precision rifle shooting and hunting big game. The .375 H&H is more than a century old, but still a popular and versatile choice for hunting big and dangerous game. For this shoot, Pro Tom Beckstrand, former U.S. Army Special Operations officer and sniper team leader, faces off against Guns & Ammo TV cameraman Ben LaLonde in a challenge that highlights the differences between these two cartridges.

Pocket-Pistol Carry Tips and Tricks

Pocket-Pistol Carry Tips and Tricks

Pocket carry, as a method of concealed carry for a defensive firearm, can be a practical option when done right. This is especially true during the colder months when heavy outer garments can obstruct access to a traditional waistline holster. Former U.S. Navy SEAL Jeff Gonzales, president of Trident Concepts, joins G&A contributor Kimberly Heath-Chudwin to discuss guns, training and gear, including Blackhawk's TecGrip holster that can make pocket carry more successful.

Savage Arms Impulse Rifle with Straight-Pull Action

Savage Arms Impulse Rifle with Straight-Pull Action

Savage introduces a must-shoot straight-pull rifle, the Impulse, with three hunting configurations.

See All Videos

Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

Buy Digital Single Issues

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Guns & Ammo App

Other Magazines

See All Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Guns & Ammo stories delivered right to your inbox every week.

Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Guns and Ammo subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now