Defending Against An Ice Pick Stab
By Prof. Gene Roos
Getting punched may be painful, and you may feel the results for some
time afterwards, but the risk factor become much more threatening when
dealing with deadly weapons. Weapons could cost you your life.
Self-defense as shown in many martial arts magazines, police or law
enforcement journals are unfortunately often flawed. Many of the instructors
or writers of self-defense articles are either over ranked, lack practical
experience or have been ill trained.
Recently I read an article in a leading law enforcement magazine on
how to defend against a downward weapons strike (knife or ice pick).
I was surprised at what I saw and said to myself, “these are dangerous
techniques.” Too much emphasis was put on blocking, when in reality
blocks can miss or be overpowered.
Instead, one viable and much safer alternative which I demonstrate below
is based on the following premise: Avoid the attack first and only then
control the attacking weapon. Of course, there are other good defenses
to this type of attack too; it is just that some are safer than others.
In the article, the officer demonstrated two possible defensive tactics
to the ice-pick type attack. In the first suggested defense, the defender
remains standing in front of the attacker (who was using his right arm
to attack) while he uses his left raised vertical forearm to block to
the inside of the downward striking arm near the elbow while simultaneously
punching the assailant in the face with his right fist.
To me this is risky. It is difficult to block an attacking arm perfectly,
and if you miss, or don’t get it right, you get stabbed. If you
are smaller than the attacker, the problem of blocking is magnified because
the attack might already be descending. To block after a lot of power
has been generated into the attack is problematic at best. It might work,
but you better be strong and accurate in your defense.
The second demonstrated defense in the article was equally risky. The
defender used both arms to block and thus could easily be punched by
the attacker’s other hand ( the none knife hand). There were other
problems as well.
A much safer defense would be to start with avoidance. First move to
the outside of the attack (away from the attack side). Then block/grab
the attacker’s wrist, possibly strike to the groin, get control
of the weapon arm and the attacker’s body, dislocate the attacker’s
shoulder while throwing him to the ground, and then take away the knife.
Attacker a right
hand overhead knife stab at the defender’s body.
right foot arc steps to his right and his left hand blocks the
attacker’s right arm.
right hand goes under and wraps on top of defender’s left
left foot arc steps to the rear, his left hand moves to attacker’s
shoulder as he spins the attacker to the ground.
Defender holds attacker in shoulder lock.
About The Author:
Prof. Gene Roos, 9th dan Ju Jitsu, and 4th dan in judo, is amemberof
the Board of Directors for the America Ju Jitsu Association. In 1958
was awarded Shodan (Judo) and won the Regional Judo Champion. In 1958 & 1959
was Judo State Champion. His instructors include: Harold Brosious (Ketsugo),
Dennis Palumbo (Hakko Ryu Ju Jitsu, 8th Dan), George Kirby, & Shizuya
Sato (Ju Jitsu), Wally Jay (Small Circle Ju Jitsu), Dr. Sacharnoski (Hard
Style Ju Jitsu & Ki) and Master Mochizuki (a student of Funakoshi,
Kano, & Ueshiba). He is also the author of a series of upcoming books
on Aiki jujitsu as well as a number of videos including: "Aiki Jujitsu" (a
three video tapes series with manuals); "Deadly Attacks" (defense
against 30 knife, gun, stick and empty hand attacks); "Deadly Attacks-
part II"(defense against an additional 30 knife, gun and empty hand
attacks); "Deadly Attacks III" and "Devastating Throws
and Other Deadly Attacks " (defense against 30 advanced combat throws,
knife attacks, stick, and a rear shotgun attack), For more information
see: http://www.aikijujitsu.homestead.com/aikijujitsu.html. Roos is a
frequent contributor to FightingArts.com