A knife is the most common weapon out there. Many criminals carry them. It is cheap and readily available. It is silent, highly effective and does not require any special skills or training to use, just the will to injure or kill.Here are a few tips we teach students in our C.O.B.R.A. Self Defense Courses to better your chances of staying alive during a knife attack:
Tip Number 1: Avoidance is the best self defense course of action
Avoid an attack all together by paying attention to your surroundings. Knife attackers generally need to get close to you to attack and often give away pre-attack indicators like rapid scanning of the area, concealing the hand holding the weapon, closing the distance, trying to grab hold of you etc. Being on your phone ensures that you are distracted and will not see it coming. Put your phone away in a public place! Do not over rely on a gun. Numerous pratical experiments have shown that unless you already have the gun loaded, charged and ready to fire in your hand, the knife always wins if the attackers is closer than 7 meters to the victim.
Tip Number 2: When you get that uncomfortable feeling something is wrong, listen to your gut. This is the most valuable lesson you will ever learn in our self-defense courses.
When you get that feeling something is wrong or when you spot the pre-attack indicators, keep moving. Distance is your best friend against any contact weapon, so use your footwork to stay as far away as possible. Run if you can. Become a track-star!
Tip Number 3: Get something between yourself and your attacker
Place physical barriers between you and the attacker. A barrier is anything your threat has to avoid or move around to get to you. This can be done by moving behind a stationary or moving object, such as a park bench or a car, or by physically placing an object between you and the attacker, such as a chair or shopping cart.
Tip Number 4: Anchor the weapon and shut the attacker down
If contact is made, do your best to protect your vital organs and arteries. Keep your hands up and guard your center-line, which encompasses your throat, neck, lungs, heart and arteries. Don’t get fixated on the weapon as it moves at the speed of lighting and you will not be able to catch the hand holding the knife. If possible, anchor the arm/shoulder holding the weapon and simultaneously strike vulnerable areas like the eyes, throat, groin and knees repeatedly, aggressively and with maximum force. The idea is to shut the attacker down as quickly as possible so that he cannot see, breath or move.Many self defense courses teach complicated moves or defenses that only work against certain attacks. At C.O.B.R.A. we know that an attack can come from any angle and that complicated techniques do not work. You need to anchor the weapon so it cannot do further damage and you need to shut the attacker down so that he cannot focus on continuing the attack. You need to do anything it takes to achieve that. Get out of there as soon as you can and seek medical attention because you will most likely be cut…if not you will be in shock anyway, so get to medical help.
Fighting against a bad guy holding a knife is one of the scariest and most dangerous attacks you can face. Make sure you get quality training in how to deal with these attacks.