Realities Created, Maintained and Destroyed, WHILE-U-WAIT!

Sunday, June 08, 2008

The Knife as a tool for dexterity

I guess it was about a year or so ago I had the pleasure of attempting to repeatedly cut and stab my friend Scott Sonnon with a knife.

It was a lot like trying to cut smoke.

This was at a rather impromptu knife workshop that we taught together in Portland OR. We put it on at the end of another seminar that Scott and Steve Barnes had put on.

The workshop was something of a lark, we just decided to do it. We had not even had time to work out what we were teaching, and neither of us had any experience with the other's material.

Needless to say, it was great fun.

At the very beginning of the evening Scott demonstrated some agility stuff he had picked up in Russia. He had me move to cut or stab him, with the knife starting in contact with him (we did use a training knife) and he used the contact to tell him how to move so that he would not be cut.

I was impressed. I am used to being able to tag someone when I try, but like I said, it was like trying to cut smoke.

So fast forward to today. Scott put's up this video along with a great article on using the knife as a tool on his blog.

Take a look, then read the article, it's good.




Sean said...

I was at the seminar that day, and it was amazing... it was the martial arts equivalent of drinking from the firehose, AFTER spending a day with Steve Barnes and Coach Sonnon.

As a result of the experience I found some great blogs like Bobbe's (who brought enough practice knives for everyone - a real class act) and Steve Perry's.

Thanks for sharing this

Steve Perry said...

I recall that seminar fondly, as well. And Sonnon's drill demonstrate what I think most tool-users figure out -- the best way to get used to having a knife in your hand is to spend time with a knife in your hand ...

I expect he might get flak because the drills aren't realistic, but that's obviously not the point.

Somewhere along the way, I was in a class on the use of the short stick, and the teacher allowed as when he was learning, he took the stick with him everywhere, even to bed, for the first six weeks he was learning how to use it. Picked it up every chance he got, got used to the balance, the feel, and dropped it a lot, until he got comfortable with it.

After I got that little knife you made for me, I would watch the TV news and just move the knife around, one hand, then the other, hour or so at a time.

Jeff "Stickman" Finder said...

Great video! The opening grip reversal is something I learned many years ago from Michael Echanis' book on military knife fighting tactics. Scott shows a nice variety of dexterity exercises here. Thanks!