Your knife is the core of your survival arsenal. To get the most out of it, we’ll need to learn a few skills and techniques with it.

This post is about those techniques. In this post, we go over the seven essential knife skills you need to know. 

Those essential must learn knife skills that will allow you to really use your knife.

7 Essential Knife Skills, Tips, and Techniques Everyone Should Know

Our knives are essential tools, not only survival but for everyday use. Learning a technique here and there ain’t such a bad idea.

1. Make A Survival Shelter With A Knife

If all you had was your knife out in the wild. That’s all you need to build a DIY shelter for yourself. You can’t survive without shelter for long, so having shelter, a roof over your head is essential.

Not only can you make a survival shelter with nothing but your knife, but you can make the most effective shelter at containing body heat.

2. Start a Fire

You can start a fire with nothing but your survival knife.

3. Fight Off A Wild Animal

Your knife is likely your best chance of survival in a wild animal attack if you don’t have bear spray.

4. Perfect Your Knife Sharpening

Sharpening my knife has become a sort of sacred ritual for me. It’s relaxing. It requires patience. It requires precision.

This video shows you how to sharpen your blade to make it razor sharp.

5. Open a Cold Brew

Crack open a beer bottle with just your knife. There’s nothing to it.

Crack open a beer bottle with just your knife. There's nothing to it. Click to Tweet

The technique is simple. It does require a few minutes of practice, but after that, you’ll be able to do it effortlessly.

See how to open a beer with your knife here.

6. Shave With A Knife

Step aside, Guillette.

We’re shaving with survival knives now.

7. Know Knives To Survive

Learn your knife anatomy. Learn every piece of the knife.

Knowing everything about it will enable you to get more use out of it. To be able to use the knife to its full potential.

Basic knife skills require a degree of knowledge of knives. The essential skills are no different. Get a handle on the folding knife anatomy so you know what each part is for.

How To Improve Knife Skills

Use it or lose it.

If you want to develop your knife cutting techniques, all you have to do is practice with it every day.

Daily practice and regular use of your knife will be the quickest way to get good with it. Then you can move on to knife fighting skills and become an assassin.

How To Practice Knife Skills

Like any other skill or instrument, you want to get better at.

Deliberate practice.

A fast way to improve your knife techniques would be to get a couple books on tactical and survival knives. Learn everything you can about them.

Tactical & Survival Knife Book
The Total Knife Manual

This book helped me a lot when I first started taking my knife use knife manual preppers

Related: Also, check out our article on the 54 Uses For Survival Knives.

Before long, you’ll be learning and developing professional knife skills.


These skills will give you a good handle (no pun intended) on using your knife.

Diving straight into advanced knife skills is always tempting. But developing and perfecting the fundamentals is crucial to getting the most out of your knives. Learning basic cutting techniques makes a big difference in your ability to perform more hardcore tasks with the knife like building a DIY shelter with only a knife.

Want to sharpen your knife skills fast?

Watch this video, it’s as close to a knife skills class for defense that you could get without actually paying for one.

Do you think there is a knife skill or technique that we should put in this list? Let us know below.

Up Next: 47 Off The Grid Hacks



7 Essential Knife Skills
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