A real-life knife attack is a terrifying ordeal. This officer-involved confrontation out of the UK provides some interesting lessons in Active Self Protection for fighting off a knife attack. How would you have dealt with this attack?
Original video: http://get-asp.com/8bvk
News report of the attack: http://get-asp.com/1txg
How do I protect myself against a knife attack?
1. You just don’t see a knife attack happen like you’ve seen in Hollywood. A real knife attack is brutal, fast, and mean. Stabbing attacks do not generally come from slashes or from any notice whatsoever, but tend to come from concealment and repeatedly stab at a rate of 2-3 stabs per second. In this instance the attacker was clearly not really intending to harm the officers because he easily could have.
2. You must know the range of your force multiplier and the range of various force multipliers that might be used against you. Knives are short-range, fast moving force multipliers. A baton is a medium-range, medium speed force multiplier. A pepper spray or CS gas canister is a long-range, medium speed force multiplier. To fight against an attack you want to have a force multiplier that is longer range, faster, or ideally both!
3. To defend against this kind of attack, you need emotional fitness. Emotional fitness is defined as the ability to internally represent a situation or predicament to yourself in such a way as to make you strong and able to successfully defend yourself against it. Repeated practice and thousands of reps of sparring and self-defense absolutely build your emotional fitness to be able to handle whatever comes your way. The officers in this video both were emotionally fit and handled their business quite well!
4. If you have a partner with you when you’re attacked (be it a LEO partner if you work on a team, or your spouse or martial artist buddy), you want to do everything you can to work as a team. Knowing each other well and communicating clearly will help you protect yourself from danger. This takes training and practice and commitment, but two partners working together present a formidable challenge to any attacker. In this instance the partners worked together well, and it paid off for sure.
Attitude. Skills. Plan.
(music in the intro and outro courtesy of www.bensound.com)