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The History of Karambit Knives

Added: 4.1.2018 12:27.01 Views count: 13418

04 January 2018

The History of Karambit Knives

It is often stated that Karambit knives are the most deadly knives used in hand to hand combat due to their flexibility and we could not agree more! However, while they are not used for the sole purpose of war anymore, they are still carried around by many for self-defense purposes as well as recreational use.

Karambit knives come in handy in so many ways. Since it's origin in the 11th century, this knife has been developed and enhanced by different cultures all around the globe. Today, it is considered a multi-use knife and mainly used for entertainment purposes, everyday utility use, and some continue to use it for self-defense.

The Origins of the Karambit Knife

You may be asking yourself when and where this knife came from. The history of the Karambit knife is very interesting. It was developed long ago by the Minangkabau people in the West Sumatra region. While Indonesia first developed it, mainly as a farming tool and utility blade, it quickly spread throughout Southeast Asia. Different people and cultures quickly picked up on the many benefits of the Karambit knife.

Not everyone used this knife for the same intended purposes. The Minangkabau people used this knife for everyday chores. It quickly became a part of everyday life kind of like how people today carry pocket knives around everywhere they go. They are handy tools, but like any other weapon, it eventually went from fishing to planting crops, to war.

The blade of the Karambit knife was eventually curved to maximize it's cutting potential and through Indonesia's trade, many neighboring countries picked up this weapon for its flexibility and multiple uses. Its design was actually based on the real-life United Cutlery Honshu Karambit which we find very interesting. Of course, the design was and continues to be tweaked here and there.

The Karambit knife came in close contact and was dispersed through Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, the Philippines, and Myanmar. Each culture took matters into their own hands and used this knife as they saw necessary. Folklore has it that the Karambit knife was inspired by the claws of tigers. This makes sense since it does mimic a tiger claw and its uses are very powerful like the claws of a tiger.

The Karambit Knife Today

Today, this knife is used for many different purposes including self-defense, everyday use, and for mere entertainment. Martial arts classes sometimes use a Karambit knife to teach people how to protect themselves. They go through a series of lessons teaching them about different grips and transitions. Some common movements include the catch and hook feature and lacerate movement.

Using a Karambit knife is a hobby that many have picked up and a great form of exercise and discipline. New users typically use a training knife before trying any combat like moves with a real one. If you can't use a training knife without the blade coming in contact with your skin, you are not ready for a real knife. This is a good rule of thumb to follow.

You may be asking yourself why these Southeastern Asian combat knives continue to be so popular even today. This is mainly due to its many uses, but this knife is also available to players in Counter-Strike: the Global Offensive game which was released in 2012. This is where many players acquired the desire to make or buy replicas for their use, as authentic Karambit knifes can be extremely pricey.

Additionally, the Karambit knife continues to be enhanced even today. Traditional or early versions of this knife may not have possessed a safety ring that they include now. This ring is made to prevent the knife from sliding from the user's hand often resulting in injury. It continues to be popular for its precise cuts and flexibility in nearly every task or challenge.

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