Into the Fray Episode 168: Basic Knife-Fighting Techniques

Mike Janich of Martial Blade Concepts shows the Master Technique, the three basic moves that lay the foundation for effectively using a knife for defense.

31 thoughts on “Into the Fray Episode 168: Basic Knife-Fighting Techniques

  1. Ryan Taylor says:

    I have never understood these things. I'm not hating, I just don't understand the 'death by 1000 cuts' concept. Too complicated for my simple brain.

    Hammer grip. ideally, get outside their elbows, weapon hand back, stab them HARD and repeatedly. Lower back, spine, neck if possible.

    If you can't get around them, grab on to them and go for their guts and stabs to the lower neck and face.

    Aggression imo is 100x more important than technique. Especially when aggression IS the technique.

    back in my lane.

  2. sarge712 says:

    "…a system that I developed…" I liked how he takes credit for techniques and tactics that have been around for millennia when he's done is rehash and re-label pre-existing material. I'd recommend Jared Wihongi, Doug Marcaida or Dan Inosanto over Janich. They teach closer to the source material than "Mr. I Created This."

  3. Alex Stafonis says:

    I don't necessarily disagree, but instead of moving away from the tire iron why not duck and launch forward, youll close the gap and strike with the knife. He wouldn't be able to hit you with the tire iron in a clinched position.

  4. Roger Scott says:

    Sorry, I realized he wasn't serious the second he said step/move back so that striking weapon may complete it's arc and be even more dangerous to me. Why couldn't his strike with his knife be delivered in the exact same manner he described following a burst in towards the attacker with my left arm up to block the attack of the blunt object and cause that object to slide down my left arm. Now I deliver his knife strike and I'm that much closer in to the attacker, and follow with either a straight kick or knee to the groin.

  5. Michael Zimmerman says:

    Knives seem to be getting more attention at USCCA.  I'm thankful for that since concealed carry will probably never be available in Hawaii in my lifetime.

    Please give us more on what we should look for in an EDC knife (what characteristics are good and bad, etc.).  More specifically:  folding vs. straight, assisted opening vs. flipper, single vs. double sided blade and what type of point?

  6. TacticalCanner says:

    At 3:35 why wouldn't you just stab them in the throat or eye socket. The person just swung a lethal weapon at you and is still a threat. I think it is risky to cut a leg muscle hoping for incapacitation versus going after the head when you are right there. Maybe the head is a more difficult target? Good video either way.

  7. Martial Blade Concepts says:

    Thank you all for your comments and feedback! I really appreciate it. Please remember that this was intended to be a short demonstration of one of the key skills in MBC; it does not represent the entire content of the system.

    Do we have tactics for left handers? Yes. Do we also teach techniques to stay inside the arc of the strike? Yes. Do we teach techniques for folks who don't have the mobility to evade the strike and must stay inside to block it? Yes. Can we fit all those into a five-minute video? Unfortunately not.

    On the positive side, we do have a complete instructional series on the Martial Blade Concepts system. A little Google-fu and I'm sure you'll find it easily.

    Thanks again for your feedback!

    Stay safe,


  8. Phil Blevins says:

    Good technique but it reminds of the old joke "How to be a millionaire and not pay taxes: first, get a million dollars."

    The first part of this technique is the hardest, and it's really hard. Getting out of the way is so much easier said than done. It requires advanced training and has nothing to do with knives. Until you can master the timing and movement to get out of the way, you can forget about that lightning fast arm slash. And there's no amount of solo practicing that will get you there. You must train with a partner and build up to full speed with real knocks on the head when you don't get out of the way.

  9. Brian Magsipoc says:

    As a student of Filipino Martial Arts, I enjoyed this demo. I feel like I should point some things out though. These are great techniques but they take a lot of training to get them right. Note how the first cut is to the forearm as the attacker is swinging a tire iron. If that swing is full speed I guarantee you'll be backing up and trying to get the hell of out dodge. He continues moving forward with the second cut to the tricep combined with checking the elbow. In a real life confrontation that can be difficult to pull off. In all the chaos you may miss the tricep cut or the elbow check completely. The third cut is to a rather specific area, just above the knee. Again, in the chaos of the fight you may miss low and glance off the shin or kneecap or you may miss high, which could lead to cutting the femoral artery which is fatal. However that may be the intention, to end the fight permanently.

    There are also legal implications. Using a knife tends to be looked down upon in court as opposed to using a gun. It may sound strange, but the knife just has bad connotations. Serial killers use knives because they like the intimacy of it – they are up close and able to see first hand every bit of damage they are causing. If you use a knife a jury may see you as being in the same position. A gun puts distance between you and the attacker.

    In short, I think you should avoid using a knife at all cost for self defense. It's messy and up close and personal. But if it's the only option you've got left these techniques, with a good amount of training, will definitely get the job done.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *