knife at throat elbow control

Imagine that some bad guy, the enemy, has crept up behind you, and now has a knife at your throat.

What do you do?

Well, many martial artists are now dealing with the knife in what they deem a more “elegant solution.” Unfortunately, these experts aren’t testing the limits of their “new control.”

In fact, I bet if I had a knife to the throats of some of these guys who demonstrate on Youtube, I’d slit their throats before they could effect a “good” counter.

So, what move are we talking about?

Control The Elbow to Control The Knife
Above, I mentioned that the enemy had a knife to your throat and was standing behind you. If you ignore the knife and say … kick backwards to the shins, you may or may not get your throat sliced mid-counter. Some martial artists say that grabbing the hand holding the knife and trying to wrestle it away from your attacker could have equally disastrous results.

Since the kicking option and the knife-wrestling option could be hazardous to your attempt at self-defense, the experts decided to control at the elbow. They almost try to straighten out the opponent’s arm by “pushing” the elbow in the opposite direction of the enemy’s shoulder.

In other words, they force the elbow, arm, AND KNIFE in the opposite direction of the mugger’s tendency to slash.

Knife Problems in Paradise
If this seems like the perfect move, it’s not.

That doesn’t mean that the technique sucks quail eggs; but it is definitely a move that requires practice … and a lot of caution in how the move is executed. Otherwise, you are going to have the enemy resist … by plunging the blade into your throat, shoulder, neck, or upper torso.

How to Improve the Technique
Now, don’t go running around saying that Pascal feels the elbow response is worthless. That’s not correct. In fact, in other circumstances, I know for a fast that controlling by the elbow can be extremely effective.

The question should be, “How can I make THIS elbow control safer — practical?

1. Get a partner and practice over and over with a rubber or wooden practice knife. Explore all the ways the attacker can “still” jab with the knife, after or “as” you grab the elbow.

Really work the variations.

Once you can feel how to pull that knife off your throat, have your practice partner resist your attempts.

2. This move becomes much more effective when combined with other techniques.

You can kick, head-butt, elbow, punch, and so on. Even if your attacker thinks that all of the “action” is at the knife, you know better. You have lots of tools at your disposal. (“Tools” = punch, elbow, kick, stomp, etc.)

3. Vary the timing of your extra strikes. Do a lot of experimenting with your practice partner(s). Start your hits AS you control the elbow. Play around with a barrage of hits just slightly AFTER you begin your elbow control.

And even begin some of your counter BEFORE the elbow comes into play.

The key is to find the results of your variations. Learn the ins and outs of applying this kind of elbow control.

4. Finally, have you attacker experiment with some hits and kicks of his or her own. Who knows” You might get that one-in-a-hundred attacker who doesn’t focus 100% on the dagger pressed up against your throat.

Is this the kind of practice you do anyway?

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