You all know what a slasher in a knife fight is… he is the guy who whips the knife back and forth wildly. This motion is erratic and unpredictable, and it makes it hard to pass the knife. Blocks would get you cut, he’s too fast to grab, and like as not he is coming in on you fast!
The first strategy that comes to mind is to wrap some sort of shield around your arm. This will protect the wrist and hand and give you at least some sort of protection. The problem with this fighting technique is that the time it takes to find something to wrap, or to remove your shirt and wind it around your arm, is time in which you are going to get cut to small pieces.
So wrapping something around your arm, while it can be useful, isn’t really the most workable tactic when if comes to knife self defenses. It is pretty much only a stop gap measure. You will probably still get sliced, and it segments your self defense strategy into predictable movements: the wrapped arm is going to be used for blocking, and probably only for blocking.
Interestingly, there is a concept that is perfect for this type of combat scenario, and for developing knife fighting techniques. It is easy to practice without getting hurt if you use a training knife. You can also just use a red magic marker and wear white tee shirts if you really want to find workability.
The concept is not to focus your eyes on the weapon, but to look at the shoulder of the arm holding the weapon. This is hard to do, because taking your eyes away from the weapon is difficult to do. There will also be those persons who hold that to take your eye off the weapon is a rather silly self defense strategy when it comes to handling a knife fighter.
The truth of the matter, however, is that you are not fighting an inanimate piece of steel, you are fighting a human being. That said, the best place to look would be the eyes, for ‘The eyes are the windows to a man’s soul. Thus, to look at the eyes would enable the fighter who has a clue to see the thought behind the action.
In the specific situation of a slasher, however, focusing your attention on the shoulder is actually superior strategy. As the hand whips back and forth, the shoulder moves in the same manner, but the shoulder is slower and bigger and easier to watch. Thus, by watching the shoulder you can actually predict the change of direction and motion offered by the slasher.
Now, the best strategy, to be honest, is to not get into a knife fight in the first place, or just bring a six shooter. But, times being what they are, criminals being what they are, this strategy should help you survive to fight another day. And that’s the best concept you can use to survive a slasher in a knife fight.