View Full Version : knife fights(whose been in them) (what did ya do)

05-31-2000, 06:40 AM
Hey all. I'm new to the message bord.
I have been in a couple of fights but nothing too serious.
Recentley though some guy my age (about 17) pulled a knife. He was shaky and didn't know what he was doing. I just pulled a groin kick, kind of swiped teh knife to the side and then decked him in the side of the head. nothing too big. he went down pretty easy.
I was wondering though, what knife fights have any of you been in? and what tactics did you use that either won the fight or caused you to lose?
I'm not scared of getting hurt, but I don't like to get sliced open. I have had an accident or two with knives and a nice cut or stab hurts like heck.(understatement)
what do you guys suggest I do if the situation presents itself again and I'm faced with someone more experienced?

"In a fight, there is no second place."

05-31-2000, 07:33 AM

First of all if you find yourself in a knife fight expect to get cut. Prepare your mind for that eventuality as it will happen. If you are able to, and have the time to do so, take off a jacket and wrap it around your weak arm. Then use that as a shield while attacking with the other hand. You can use anything even your shoes to protect your hands while parrying a knife, though it is unlikely you will have time to take them off /infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif Next thing is to use your belt if you are wearing one or pick up a stick or garbage can lid. One very nice improvised weapon is a car antenna. Rip one off of the nearest car, though they are getting scarcer, and you will have a formidable weapon which will slice up your opponent almost as nicely as a knife. But, your best option is to get away.

I have had the misfortune of being in a few knife encounters. As a result of one I have a severed tendon in my left hand. The guy slashed and I blocked with a stick. Only thing I forgot was to move my hand when he fell forward and slid the knife down the stick into my left hand. Oh well, I learned from that. Brings up a good point just because you block the knifes first move does not mean there won't be a second. I have also been stabbed twice in my left bicep and gut a slash across my right forearm. In each of the attacks, I was able to recover from the injury and take my attacker down. The one where I got stabbed was three on one. Another reason to run if you get the chance, it's not worth it.

While in the military we were taught to accept a cut to the outside of our weak hand in order to get a killing blow with the other hand. Works great if you can stand up to it. But, all those scars are nice conversation pieces.

Best advice is to get distance and run. Barring that I say attack the vitals and accept you will get cut. This does not mean you don't try not to get cut but it is unrealistic to expect to walk away from a knife fight without some type of injury. If you want some really good preparation then try some of the Kali arts as the blade is a preferred weapon.

Oh, for those of you thinking I look for trouble, I was a police officer for several years and even did a stint as a prison guard. Hence the excessive violence. Plus some people think I am just plain ugly and take offense to my darling personality /infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif



Ford Prefect
05-31-2000, 09:47 PM
I've never been in one if you don't somebody attacking me with a knife when I was in high school. It was winter, and I had on a winter jacket. The blade didn't make it through. It was a crappy knife and it was only a half-hearted attempt because I knew the guy and he was just stabbing at my arms rather than my head, neck, or body. It was still kinda scary though.

I have seen a couple brutal knife attacks though. Nobody had any training and it just ended with a lot of blood being spilled. One kid even had to get air lifted to the hospital because the blade broke off in his back.

Stay clear of 'em. If you run into somebody not skiddish to use the knife, you'll be in a world of pain.

05-31-2000, 10:27 PM
It is quite easy to knock a knife out of someone's hand by striking either the tendons in the wrist, the knuckles, or the back of the hand with a hard object. It's called "defanging the snake".

05-31-2000, 10:36 PM

That technique should be called "painful". We practice some knife defense techniques and my partner has become quite adept at hitting that spot on me. I finally got her the last couple of times.

Fortunately, I've only had practice with rubber knives. I've never been in a knife fight.

Wow. I'm in a sheltered environment.

06-01-2000, 12:16 AM
The only knife fight I ever saw was in junior high...some kid got slashed and bled all over my history classroom. Specifically, my desk. My a-hole teacher wouldn't clean it up since it might be evidence, and since it was public school, there was no room for me to move anywhere, so I had to try to concentrate on history with a big, chunky, schmear of blood across my desk.

I made it 15 minutes before I had to run out and puke.

Reverend Tim

06-01-2000, 12:58 AM

Defanging the snake is quite popular among fillipino arts. However, if you think it is that easy and will work on the street I suggest you rethink your options. I agree that if you have a weapon, like a stick, to hit the opponent with you may have an advantage. However, the wrist is a small target and many knife fighters train to change directions while using the knife. I am not saying it is impossible to knock the knife out of someones hand but you need to consider the other persons mental attitude. For example, when I was stabbed in the arm I did not even pause, I just nailed the guy who stabbed me. I am sure he "thought" a knife in my arm would have more effect. If the attacker has any type of sensitivity he will be able to nullify a strike to his wrist, provided you can hit that target while under the stress of actual combat and while the target is moving. In real life people do not take a stance and brandish the knife. Most attack swiftly without warning and you may not even know a knife is present until you are cut.

Please do not take offense I am not trying to preach or put anyone down. The only thing I am trying to get across is that a knife is a dangerous weapon. The best option is to run away. If you must fight then I have found it more beneficial to pass the knife and attack the persons center or vitals. I find it hard for them to continue if they no longer have an eye or thier throat no longer transfers oxygen to the brain. Some advocate controlling the weapon. I advocate controling the attacker. As I said I managed, more by luck and the grace of God, to take each of my attackers out of commision after being cut. Your best weapon is a strong will. And, a good pair of Reeboks /infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif



06-01-2000, 01:00 AM
Oh, one last thing, after re-reading Robinfs' post I would like to point out the fact that although she states her opponent has gotten quite good at the "defanging" technique. Robin has been able to "get" her opponent a few times as well. Remember, you can hit him several times, all he really needs is one good cut or thrust and you will be in a world of hurt.



06-01-2000, 08:34 AM
Good use of humour in your posts Sihing73.

I agree with Sihing73 about being prepared to get cut if you get into a knife fight. There are sooo many variables when it comes to knife defense. The best, if at all possible, is to get the **** out of the situation as fast as possible.

I have had a knife pulled on me on two occasions. The first one (and first time), it was obvious to me that the dude wasn't serious to begin with..so disarming him by hoofing the knife-weilding hand wasn't hard at all. Actually, it surprised both of us! I didn't have any martial art training at that time..just reflex. The second time occured many moons later. The knife was brandished in my face. I zoned and things went into slow-mo as I gained control of the person by stepping in very close to their body and seizing the knife-weilding hand and twisting the hand out and away from both of us while my other hand seized the throat.

I do not know if the person was serious or not. But I do know 2 things:

1) if possible, leave.
2) if 1 is not possible, you need to gain control of the knife-weilding arm quickly while simultaneously seizing control of the attackers body/balance. IN my experience, the throat is prime "A" grade beef.

Shows over folks. Time to go home.

06-01-2000, 09:30 PM
Well NOSPAM has the right idea if you leed your opponent towards the side that is holding the weapon it will help you when you gain control of there hand that is holding the weapon. try to bolk or perry the thrust or stab towards the inside of their body at this point try to gain control of hand w/weapon turn it into their body. this will make the weapon face them or you can turn it away from them which means you would need to remove the weapon some how . this is not a very good way to learn I suggest you seek a competent SIFU to show you how. GOOD LUCK


06-01-2000, 09:55 PM
thanks guys for all yoru info. I'm a student of five animal style Kung-Fu, but I wanted to hear form some fairly regular people who have had experiences with it.

Seeker of the Way
06-01-2000, 10:16 PM
Knife fights are really, really icky. I've been in two ever. I was sliced upside my lower arm, and got the knife away with a nasty finger strike to the man's wrist. I followed with a kick to his abdomen, and then ran like hell. I was lucky, and not even that lucky. My golden rule is: They pull a knife, you run like hell. A unlucky strike can render you dead or permanently lame. There is nothing glamorous in knife fights. Just run. Trust me on this one.


The dance of life, the capering of elements, and skip of gods. The dance is mine, I AM the dance.

06-01-2000, 10:29 PM
Well, I was in a crowded diner in Texas when I saw this kid minding his own business. So I dumped my drink in his lap and pushed him off his stool. At that point he pulled out a knife. So I whipped off my pewter frog belt, swung it, striking the knife with the buckle and distroying his personal property. Then I pulled my pants up and called my lawyer to insure that I'd be in the clear and the victom would go to jail.

No ........ wait ..... that wasn't me.
I must have read it somewhere.

06-01-2000, 10:56 PM
My brother was having coffee at a coffee house with a couple of friends when he witnessed a knife attack. From what he said it happened real quick. A guy was sitting at a table outside with a girl when another guy walked up to him, they appeared to argue for a few minutes. Then out of nowhere the guy standing pulled a blade and stabbed the guy sitting in the side of the neck. The wounded guy tried to stand but just ended up falling out of his chair. My brother believes the guy died. The other guy, the police found a couple of shops down playing Tekken at Sega City. BTW, a quick note to back up Wudang, defragging the snake works well if you practice it and is extremely effective against those that are not skilled with blade work. Like anything else it just takes practice. I seen a couple of knife attacks but I don't think they drive home the same point like the one my brother saw.-ED

[This message has been edited by GinSueDog (edited 06-02-2000).]

06-02-2000, 01:31 AM
Well, I've obviously been laying low on this one, but Highlander has already chimed in for me. Next time I'll just grab some other guy and hold him in front of me.

That was the second experience involving the knife, the first one was much more serious. I got stabbed in the lower back one day while I was playing video games. I have no idea why the guy started stabbing, but I caught his movement just out of the corner of my left eye. I was able to move left and forward so that the first one got into my left side, but just into the meat on the side, no organ damage. The next two stabbs I blocked down and them up with my forearms, which are still scarred. On the third stab I punched, I think a couple of times but I'm not sure. I got him square in the nose. Then I grabbed his throat. He hit the ground, and I ran. I guess it was a victory, but I got hurt worse in the long run than he did. I still have no idea who he was, or why he was trying to stab me. He was pretty frantic about it at the time. It wasn't very calculated swinging, just rapid stabbing.

His attack style is what I use to judge all knife training from. Sadly, even in my own art, most techniques fail. Even Arnis and Kali don't do so well against a close in attacker making numerous light stabbs. Unlike a punch, the blade doesn't need much power. So little jabs that wouldn't hurt a bit with a hand become one of the most deadly techniques with a knife.

What saved my life wasn't the block, or the punch. It was the "cover". The immediate movement back and to the left that put me off the line of attack.
So what do I think is the key to blade defense.
Footwork. And that is taught first by stepping, and THEN by running.
Everyone always say, "run away". And that's god advice. But what they fail to mention is that you have to turn your back to run away and that's most likely when you'll be stabbed. You may get a couple a yards away, but bleeding and hurt, he'll be able to catch you pretty quick and finish the job. So learn HOW and WHEN to run away first.

If you pr!ck us, do we not bleed? If you poison us, do we not die? And if you wrong us, shall we not revenge? If we are like you in the rest, we will resemble you in that the villany you teach me, I will execute, and it shall go hard but I will better the instruction. MOV

06-04-2000, 08:36 PM

My reply above was not meant to be the only solution to what to do against a knife. You can not learn that by reading a posting on a forum. You should learn in person, from a competent teacher.

Also, running away is one of the best solutions (after avoidance), but is not always possible. What I should have stated is that rather than fight against the knife, it is better to knock the knife away first. Of course if you have anything in your hand to do it with, the better.

There are many techniques, but again, you cannot learn them from reading a forum!

06-05-2000, 12:46 AM

We are in complete agreement you can not learn how to defend against a knife, or any weapon, or really any technique from a forum. What a forum can do is give you new insights with which to explore ones options.

In order to prepare to defend against a knife you need lots of practice and not a little luck. Considering that each of us is human and is quite capable of having a bad day, we again agree that running away is the best option. I feel that if you are confronted and must fight then you should attack your opponents vitals as viciously and agressively as possible. If you can pick up something to use as a weapon do so. The car antenna I mentioned earlier makes a good choice. Either way, if you choose to fight, and this is not something to take lightly, then you fight to win. My goal is to destroy my opponenet and to do it as brutally as possible. This could end the fight quickly and may give any friends of thiers standing around time to consider not joing in once they see what happened to their friend. Still running away is still preferable.



06-13-2000, 06:11 AM
Well, the first thing is to try to get away. run if you can, or stun him and then run. if you can not get away, most guy's on the street will only concentrate on the knife in there hand and how they are going to try to cut you. That give's you an advantage right there. You only have to worry about the knife in his hand. Then try to pick up some type of defensive weapon to defend your self. and if none is around, wait. let him make the first move, keep back and watch for the attack so you can disarm him. I've been several time's, amd yes being cut is part of knife fighting. some of my fight's, thank god, I have not even had a scratch, using the dodge and wait method. But like I said at the begining Most of the guy's on the street Consentrate on the knife in there hand, but there are those who use the knife as an extention of there body and style. So in those situation's, stun and run... but the best I can give you is to try to talk, run, stun then run.. if all is unavoidable.. make a defensive stand....

06-30-2000, 05:39 AM
I'd watch those knives unless you like blood. There's never been a time with me that I haven't dropped a guy but I have the scars to prove it

07-01-2000, 05:41 AM
I find running in the opposite direction as quick as I can quite effective.

Pre emptive strikes with verbal engagement have worked in the past.
Never had time to remove a jacket & wrap my arm in it!
If you can afford it Aramid is pretty usefull

If you take on some some one with a knife chances are you WILL get cut.
However a lot of people carry knives for bravados sake (in the UK at least) & don't really want to use 'em.
I know of situations where people have backed down when their 'victim' has told them what will happen WHEN they take the knife off them.

To finish if you got a 'blade' & they got a 'blade'. CUT & RUN...

07-01-2000, 06:08 AM
Just to add, when we was kids we used to practise knife fighting with plastic bottles sliced at an angle to make a nice fake knife.
Bare chest & safety goggles on, helps your timing plus you get a 'tad' of pain so it's a bit better than with rubber knives...
Respect that thing it f***ing hurts!

07-04-2000, 07:12 PM
I've been in one knife fight in my life. It was by a senior in highschool with a machete.

What he did was try to slash my arms and lower neck. This machete was pretty short, only about 1½ feet long. so what I did when he came for my arm ( when I had a coat on ) was grab his elbow and sweep him with the underside of myright foot. I thought I had him but obviously i didn't when the jerk of his fall made him let loose his machete and lodge shallowly in my left hip. He only hit my muscle but it hurt like hell.

Underaged Drunken Monkey

07-04-2000, 10:12 PM
this is great you guys, thanks for all your input.......
keep it coming if you like.......

"In a fight, there is no second place."

07-05-2000, 06:41 AM
A slash will not usually drop someone but a thrust is a bad thing. I've never had anyone thrust at me in a street fight. Most guys in my experience use a slash but then they were probably trying to keep me at arms distance instead of really trying to fight.

Check out knifefighter as he has alot of experience.

07-07-2000, 08:58 AM
I am a Psychiatric Nurse. One day on our
unit a patient escaped thru a locked door
that failed. The code went out over the
intercom and five or six of us went to chasing him. He made it to his truck and
pulled out a Rambo style knife. We all
turned and ran like hell back to the front
door of the hospital. Getting killed by
a crazy man in the parking lot is not my idea
of a successful intervention. Anyway as we
got to the front door. The guys in front
stopped suddenly to open the glass doors that open outward. In front of the door an
industrial welcome mat was on the sidewalk.
That **** thing rolled up and jamed the
doors. We all ran into each othe like a
Keystone Cop segment. The guy with the knife had us cornered. I dropped in a stance and started calling commands for him
to drop the knife. He pulled back then faking a downward stab several times. He was about five feet away, also verbally
threatening me. By this time the other men
had unblocked the door. My friend, picked up that heavy mat and held it in front of his body shielding the rest of us as we
escaped inside the building. We were able to hold the door as he stood two feet away
branishing this knife. Eventually the police arrived and arrested him peacefully.

The key to our survival was running, verbal
commands and sheilding with the mat.
I take my knife defense training with a
much greater intensity now!!

MonkeySlap Too
07-31-2000, 03:25 AM
I've always been pretty sucessful with my 'mouth' kung fu in these situations. Often disarming my opponents verbally.

One funny story though. I was walking through Grant Park in Chicago early one evening and a fellow pulled a knife on me. Did I execute any specific strategy or technique? Nope. I just instinctively grabbed it out of his hand while saying 'give me that.' He was so shocked he ran away, and I got a free Gerber dirk that I still use to practice with today.

Luck, sure, but I think my intent had a lot to do with surviving that one.

08-04-2000, 11:53 PM
Use a taijitsu disarming technique. THrow your keys in his face, hit him in the stomache to knock the wind out of him, turn his knife and use his own hand to stab him in the heart. Take his money, get your keys and vanish.

08-07-2000, 07:02 AM
I usually agree with what I've seen you write but I have to disagree here.
If you are confronted with a knive accept the HIGH PROBABILITY that you will get cut...but for God's sake don't tell youself that you ARE going to get cut!!
That kind of defeatest thinking can get you killed!
If you believe that you ARE going to get cut you almost SURELY will subconciously do something to GET cut!
I knew a young guy in the Army who got in a fight in a parking lot. He was stabbed in the throat with a broken bottle and died before the ambulance could do anything for him. It was just one cut.
If you tell youself you ARE GOING to get cut, which cut are you going to accept? The one that kills you?
No...just know that you are likely to get cut and don't be surprised if you do...but ****...you already have an enemy in front of you...don't be your own enemy!
Don't ever think, "I'm going to get cut"...fight not to get cut! If you escape and live and you have a cut, you should be disappointed that you got a cut and think of what you did wrong...not.."oh well, I knew it would happen."
Hell, the other guy doesn't know he's gonna cut you...he just hopes he does. He'll try..but it's a fight..anything can happen.
I would never tell myself that I am going to lose or get cut or get shot or whatever...I would tell myself, "I'm gonna kill this guy" and if I could defeat him without killing him, then we are both fortunate.
I know you were a cop and I'm not trying to disrespect you...I am just surprised that you allowed yourself to adopted that defeated thought pattern.
The way I see it: the other guy is my enemy. I'm not going to be my own enemy. Why should I think what he wants me to think? If anything I want him to think "This is useless. I'm not gonna win and this guys gonna kill me if I don't stop now."
I say don't prepare you mind that you WILL get cut..prepare you mind that his guy is trying to kill you and you'd better fight like a wounded bear.
That's my 2 cents.
<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Sihing73:

First of all if you find yourself in a knife fight expect to get cut. Prepare your mind for that eventuality as it will happen.


[This message has been edited by totallyfrozen (edited 08-07-2000).]

[This message has been edited by totallyfrozen (edited 08-09-2000).]

08-12-2000, 07:41 AM
Greetings my friends,

Well the good thing for me is if you know that a person is going to take a knife to stab you or something, quickly unbuckle your belt and whip at his face. If you have a belt. If you don't have the best thing is stick to him, go near to him and stop him(with your skills) not the knife! I heard that running away from it will get you bleed.


08-13-2000, 09:02 PM
In most situations, If you are attacked with a knife... the person will let you know he has one. IF he doesn't, he knows what he's doing and it will probobly be too late.

If you are badly cut, do not run, this will increase the bloodflow and you will most likely die. It takes about 30 seconds to pump out your entire supply of blood when you have a good slash in you. If you are stabbed, and are lucky enough to have the knife still in you, DONT take it out.. no matter how deep it is.

Avoid getting slashed/stabbed in vital areas.. a slash of the forearm is a lot less damaging than a slice to the neck.

Keep in mind that a good knife fighter will try and go for muscle however, and if he cuts up your forearm, it will kinda impair you when trying to grapple or anything(sorry BJJ :P)

I hope this helps somewhat... IF anyone has anything to add... PLEASE do.. as I am only a newbie when it comes to bladework.

08-14-2000, 04:13 AM

I respect your viewpoint however I would ask that you reread my previous post in its entirety. I am not coming from a defeatist attitude but one of realism. No matter how good you are you will most likely get cut in a knife-fight. Having the proper mindset is the most important aspect of surviving such an encounter. It is all well and good to think you will not get cut and to say you will fight like crazy. Still, the reality is that too many people convince themselves of the unlikehood of getting cut or otherwise injured and when it happens they are unable to deal with the reality. I am reminded of the Boxers who put their faith in the ability to withstand injury from guns and other weapons. The reality was that this was impossible. Likewise the realisty of a knife-fight is you will most likley get cut. Is it possible to survive without getting cut, yes. Is my goal to be cut, NO /infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif still I go into such an encounter with the knowledge that I will most likley get cut and am prepared to deal with the event if and when it occurs. Of course, I will do everything to avoid injury. /infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

I can assure you that my attitude in a fight is anything but one of defeat. I may accept the fact that I will be injured but I respond in spite of that fact. My mind, at least my goal, is to be empty and to react to the situation without thought. Not there yet but I am working on it /infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif. Still, I can tell you that being prepared to be cut and accepting the fact that it will happen has probably saved my life more than not preparing for the event. When I choose to fight I assure you there are only two outcomes; I will win or I will lose (deep is'nt it, LOL) If I decide to fight I will do everything in my power to win. I would like you to conisder boxers. They go into the ring with the knowledge that they will be hit. They prepare for this and are able to deal with it when it happens. How many people do you know that have something happen to them and they are so unprepared that they freeze? I know I have known a few.

I hope this makes my position a little clearer. We can still disagree but I still say you will get cut in a knife-fight and thinking otherwise or not preparing for such an eventuality is not the wisest course of action. Do all you can to avoid it but accept the reality that it will most likely happen.



08-14-2000, 09:15 AM
Jeez,some scary stories here.I was a bouncer for several years and luckily only had one "encounter" with a knife.A Russian sailor was in my bar(this is a true story!).He was about in his mid fifties agewise, and got really roasted.So,as we walked him out(he groped a waitress) he turned,pulled his jacket open and reached for the knife in his pocket!
But,he was so drunk he stumbled back and couldnt grab the knife solidly.So i just pulled his hand away from the knife and said "No!".This happened twice more.Finally I took the knife out of his pocket,bought him a cab and gave the knife to the cabbie to give to the old guy when he dropped him off.
True story,and a lot less frightening than some that Ive read here.

08-15-2000, 12:16 PM
Thanks for clarifying your views. I think that we are actually on the same page.

I agree that one should understand the GREAT likelihood of getting cut or stabbed. I guess what I was trying to say is that the situation is scary enough as it is (as you know, you've been there). I was simply trying to communicate that it is very important to a person's survival not to terrify themselves by focusing on the fact that could be killed or maimed. Panic is a REAL killer!

It is just as important, to avoid terror, to understand that you MOST LIKELY WILL get cut, and don't be surprised or paniced if you do...just don't psych yourself out in favor of your enemy by dwelling on the fact that this person "IS going to cut me!"

Understand that you will most likely get cut but don't scare yourself into defeat with the thought...if one has balanced thought like that...I think one has a chance of avoiding terror and defeat.

Thanks again! /infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

08-15-2000, 07:37 PM
the mind frame that I use when I get scared goes like this(internal dialogue here)"ok,Im outnumbered,Im gonna get hurt,maybe real bad,im scared(important to admit this,helps the adrenalin flow),my only chance is to be perfect,to win, focused".This has worked wonders for me in RL,in terms of calming and focusing me fast..I actually practice visualization like this.I think for the knife thing this relates,as I acknowledge the injury factor and use that to focus.I havent explained this very well,but I dont see the I will get cut and the i wont get cut as exclusive attitudes,they should actually complement each other,IMO.