Good advice so far on avoidance, awareness, and the fallacy of most disarms. I am glad to hear that you survived those two knife attacks, and glad that you are seeking out more training and information on the subject in case, God forbid, it should ever happen again.
I like McCann’s advice in the above video about the necessity of taking out the attacker and not chasing the blade, but… there are serious liabilities in the actual physical defensive skills he is demonstrating in that video. If everything goes right (attacker is unskilled with/unknowledgeable about edged weapons, they make one telegraphed extended attack, they are not all that physically strong, not very fast, and you have plenty of distance to see the attack coming, aka a "best case scenario close range knife attack) that technique can work beautifully. If however the attacker is skilled with/knowledgeable about edged weapons, “swarms” you with the blade, is fast, strong, and athletic, then that technique may get you killed.
Here is an excerpt from Richard Ryan’s “Unarmed against the blade” DVD. Rich is IMO the very best RMA person out there today when it comes to knife defense material. In it he mentions some of the problems with McCann’s technique. He has also detailed in the past why “clamping” like McCann is advocating can be dangerous, even has a true story of a very skilled knife defense instructor who refused to listen to him about its dangers and wound up dead as a consequences:
That’s interesting Sento. The “clamp” was essentially how I was taught and it seemed like as good an answer to a really crappy problem as any I’d seen, so I never looked too much further into it. I begin from the premise that any defence short of putting a rifle round into the attacker’s CNS from outside knife range “may get you killed”, but I take your point.
I have always had concerns about how effective it would be against a big, strong, athletic committed attacker even if they execute a relatively unskilled “prison rush” style attack. I’ll definitely check out Ryan’s stuff. Thanks for posting. Thought provoking as always.
Fyi - that’s not McCann’s only advice for knife defense - it’s just one to defend against that specific looping-overhead attack. And if you train it, it’ll work (As does his shit about fending and getting inside the guard).
But I particularly liked the part about taking out the guy with the knife as opposed to trying to “defang the snake” or any of that other happy horseshit.[/quote]
Yeah, there was a bit more to the training I had on the topic as well. Still, the idea of taking on a person with comparable physical abilities and aggression levels to myself, when he has a knife and I don’t sucks to me, however you slice it (pun intended).
McCann’s a guy who commands respect, for sure. I’ve seen a few of his videos and have been generally impressed. He’s on the list of people I’d definitely take a seminar with, time and money permitting. I seem to remember a post of yours where you had done just that, am I right?
The effectiveness if any technique is dependent on its appropriateness to the situation. There is no magic bullet (unless it’s that rifle round to the CNS I mentioned).
Fully agree with the take out the guy with the knife vs defang/disarm etc strategy. Disarms are best accomplished after you have knocked someone the f out.