Protection Against Knife Attacks

Defense Against Knife AttackWhat Do You Do If Someone Pulls a Knife On You?

Knives are a common weapon used in the streets, besides guns and other weapons of opportunity (i.e. glass bottles, chains and baseball bats).

What can you do to survive a knife attack? (This article is for everyone, including those engaging in neighbor safety patrols and security professions).

First, distance!

Unfortunately, we are on the reactive vs. proactive in a knife attack. Meaning, the person who is wanting to use a knife knows it before you do (advantage). Distance yourself to establish a “reactionary gap”, like driving a car. It takes so much time for you to react appropriately to the actions someone takes to attack you. Get it? Good!

Think about it. Scientifically, it takes your brain time to acknowledge when someone is making a movement towards a threatening area (waist line, pocket, behind back, whatever). Then when they present the weapon (if they even pull the weapon out to brandish, they might wait for you to grab them first). Then the amount of distance for them to travel and deploy their weapon (lunge, run, thrust towards you). This all can happen within a fraction of a second.

Again it has been scientifically proven, the brain has to process the recognition of the threat, send messages to the muscles of your body and then motor movement to respond.

Did you Know?

Police are trained to maintain a 18-21 foot reactionary gap. Noted! Sometimes we can’t help but to get close to individuals we are interacting with. Which, brings me to the next point.


The hands will kill you! Period! Watch the hands. If they are touching around their pockets, going into them or touching their face when getting close to you, WARNING!

Hands stay out of pockets or clothing. If their hands are in clothing, they stay in the clothing! They stay there! You remove their hands for them (get it?). Whatever the hands do or have can and will be used against you. Caution!

If they start reaching for things, create that reactionary gap!


You will get cut! I don’t care what Hong Kong Fuy experts say! Distance from the blade is your best bet! You can’t cut, what you can’t catch! Period! If you can put a barrier between you and the attacker the better. A parked car, park bench, a tree or just running to remove you from the knife, the better! Buy time! The more noise and distance you put yourself between that blade and you, the more the attacker will have to weigh the “benefit” vs. “risk”.

If you have no choice but to engage in unarm vs armed combat, simple, gross motor skills will prevail. Unless you reallly have practiced your techniques in a high stress enviornment.

Example: We all have put our house keys into our locks without stress, several times, heck years of practice, right?

Now, imagine being chased by crazy dogs. You run to your house. You pull out your keys. How many times, do you thing you will have to cycle through your keys to get the right one and then get your key through that tiny, little key hole? Enough said!

I hope this sheds a little light on training issues. I love you all and hope you all be safe out there!

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