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Knife Through Leg Trick

By: Chris Welsh - Updated: 23 Mar 2013 | comments*Discuss
Knife Through Leg Magic Trick Knife

A very deceptive visual move that can be performed anywhere and in any outfit - and it is not limited to a knife.

The Effect
The magician displays a butter knife and declares that he will pass it through his leg without requiring a trip to the hospital afterwards. Taking a seat, the magician leans forward over his right leg and reaches out with both hands over his thigh. Holding the knife in both hands horizontally over his leg, he counts “one, two, three” and on three quickly moves both hands down, on either side of the leg, until they are underneath the thigh - still holding the knife with both hands.

The Secret
The key in the Knife through Leg deception is a quick bit of sleight of hand just as the hands approach the leg, moving the knife around the leg instead of through it.

A butter knife, marker, stick or any object roughly five to six inches in length and easily held and manipulated with the finger tips.

The only advance preparation needed is to make sure the object to be passed through the leg is long enough and that the right angles are maintained while performing.

Performing the Trick

This is one of those quick, visual effects that work really well as a stand alone, “check this out” with a bunch of mates or as part of a longer routine.

If a knife sharper than a butter knife is used, then extra care should be taken by the magician not to cut himself, especially if the tip is very sharp, as it will tuck into the forearm slightly during the “Secret Move.”

Once again, any similarly sized object can be used in place of the knife - especially good if performing for children or at a location where possession of a knife would be frowned upon.

  1. The magician holds up a knife and declares he will make it pass through his leg without cutting himself.

  2. The magician can pass the knife out for inspection if he likes, or even use it to cut paper, rope, or anything else handy if using something like a steak knife.

  3. magician holds knife in both handsTaking a seat, the magician should lean slightly over his leg, holding both hands out over the thigh with the knife in the right hand, held at the butt with the thumb and finger tips of the first two fingers. 20px break
  4. Grasping the point of the knife loosely in the same manner with the left hand, the magician lowers the length of the knife down to touch the top of the leg. Raising it up and then back down quickly, the magician counts “one.”

  5. Repeating the up and down motion, the magician counts “two,” and then even more quickly says “three” and rushes the hands downward. At this point the knife would bounce out of the fingers if held tightly, but a secret move will make the trick take place.

  6. magician points knife towards forearmWith the fingertips of the left hand, the magician points towards his forearm, causing the knife to turn inward and lay flat against the arm. This motion is done a split second before the knife makes contact with the leg. 20px break
  7. magician reverses the secret moveThe moment the hands clear the leg the magician reverses the move, once again grasping the point of the knife with the tips of the left hand fingers.20px break
  8. At this point the magician can lift the leg to show the knife in position below, still held by both hands, or he can slowly draw the knife out from underneath, showing that it had passed through the leg.

Magical Tip

For a comical and startling move, try the trick with the edge of the knife down towards the thigh when starting out and then cry out as the hands pass around the leg.

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