Knife Defense – Thrust

by Philip Holder PhD.
Medical Coordinator – BodySmart Wellness
Grandmaster – North American Wing Chun Association
From copyrighted material. Copyright Philip Holder 2016 – 2017
Grandmaster, North American Wing Chun Association


The best self defense is to preemptively keep yourself out of harm’s way. Like Benjamin Franklin said, “An Ounce Of Prevention Is Worth A Pound Of Cure”. If you, for some reason, are confronted by an attacker, it is important to be prepared to provide for your safety. This series of brief video articles on “Defensive Tactics” provides insight into self defense from a Wing Chun perspective.


There are differences in strategy between defending an unarmed attack and defending against an armed attacker. An advantage when defending against an armed attacker is that the armed attacker (unless well trained), tends to put all of his or her eggs in one basket. He or she is focused only on cutting or stabbing his or her intended victim. Once the defender has MANAGEMENT of the weapon, he or she has a window of opportunity for defense. When the defense is executed properly the defender will quickly gain MANAGEMENT of the weapon. In most cases, it will take the attacker a moment to process the fact that his or her weapon is no longer useful. The Window Of Opportunity will close quickly so action must be immediate. Other than the advantage just mentioned, defending against a knife (or for that matter any weapon), is never a slam dunk. It is a situation fraught with danger, so once again… Better if you never have to encounter that situation. If, however, it should ever occur, this information may be helpful.

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