How to Perform a Knife Hand Strike in Karate

The knife hand strike can be used as a finishing move in karate. It is commonly known as the karate chop and can be used in a street fight too. Although there are several other devastating techniques in this sport, this one is quite easy to master.

Not only can anyone win points through the knife hand strike, it can be used to knock the opponent down quite easily. However, it is not that easy as it appears, so one has to take care of a lot of things.

First of all, you will need to have enough speed in order to make this move stick and then you have to gain strength in your arms to cause enough damage to the opponent, so that he/she cannot fight back.


  • 1

    Take your stance

    Whenever you are involved in a fight, you have to take the correct stance. Otherwise, you will be unable to transfer the weight correctly. Due to this, the opponent will pin you down quite easily. Keep your knees slightly bent and try deceiving the other person with frequent movements before going on the attack.

  • 2

    Extend your arm

    After you have correctly positioned yourself for a fight, you need to get the arms ready. Keep one of your arms close to your body and stretch the other towards your opponent.

  • 3

    Keep your hand open

    After extending the arm, you need to make sure that your hand is open with the fingers closely connected together. The palm side should be above, as you will not be required to use the knuckles in this deadly move. Moreover, you are supposed to fold the thumb into your palm and then position your hand like a knife.

  • 4

    Wait for the opportunity

    If you are practicing, you can repeat the move at any stage. However, things are different during a fight. You will have to wait for the right moment, when your rival is vulnerable to an attack.

  • 5

    Stretch your shoulder straight

    Lift your shoulder straight up and make sure it is stretched at an angle of 90 degrees. You have to be pretty quick while doing so, as it will help you gain momentum into the move.

  • 6

    Strike with force

    Now, strike your opponent with force. You will have to hit him with your little finger, while the rest of the fingers will help you generate maximum force.

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