The Ergonomic Knife Handle Test: 5 Notable Brands Reviewed

August 3, 2022

Your palms and fingers have a natural form to which knife handles must yield. If you relax your hand and place your palm on a hard surface, you'll notice it's not fully laid flat—there's a space. Your hand creates a bulge, and this is what ergonomics tries to fill. 

With a knife, its handle is the most important part; without it, you can't use the cutting tool. It's also vital to hold knife handles with ease for longer, tougher cooking sessions. 

So we're putting several knives to the test. The objective is to figure out how ergonomic these kitchen knives are. But we'll include an overview of their features and an opportunity to explore them further.

ergonomic knife handle - Kyocera 3 black kitchen knife set


Kyocera 3-Piece Knife Set

Quick Knife Profile:

Knife Length: 8 inches (Santoku knife piece)
Blade Material: Ceramic Blade
Tang Profile: Stamped
Handle Material: Bio-derived sugarcane

Kyocera Features Highlight

Sharpness retention. Kyocera's ceramic blades are the knife set's best feature, with the fine edges made to be astonishingly sharp. Kyocera's ceramic edges are ten times more durable than steel blades because the material never corrodes and isn't malleable.

The ceramic blade is only one of many features worth knowing about Kyocera. If you want a comprehensive one, you can browse our detailed Kyocera knives review.

Handle Hits

Inner handle curvature. Kyocera's handle has an inner curve near the heel. This is a plus because it gives you a better grip.

Handle Misses

No rivets. Due to Kyocera's stamped profile, the handle scale is not held together with a rivet through the tang. Therefore, if used vigorously, the knife's handle may loosen up.

Kyocera's Ergonomic Handle Score: 3 / 5

This ergonomic knife set nailed the outline that makes holding it feel natural. But the possibility of scales loosening cancels out the convenience it brings, especially in the long term.

Want to test Kyocera's knife handle? 

Kyocera's knife features are substantial enough to be worth your grip. It's a tool that will feel good on your palms for as long as you can take care of it. Check out Kyocera's handle on Amazon.

ergonomic knife handle - Wusthof Classic chef knife with black handle scale


Wusthof Classic Chef Knife

Quick Knife Profile:

Knife Length: 13 inches
Blade Material: Solingen Stainless Steel
Tang Profile: Full
Handle Material: Polyoxymethylene (POM)

Wusthof Classic Features Highlight

Precise edge. Wusthof is a popular brand name with a proprietary Precision Edge Technology (PEtec). Wusthof uses a laser to ensure your chef knife is ground at the precise angle. This feature alone makes the Wusthof worthy of a closer look.

If you want to read the other features of this world-class chef knife, visit this Wusthof Classic review.

Handle Hits

Inner handle bulge and finger guard. Wusthof's handle has a subtle swell on the inner handle that serves as a precursor for the downward curvature of the handle's heel. In addition, the thick bolster acts as a finger guard that prevents cutting injuries.

Handle Misses

Straight outer handle. Wusthof didn't give the handle the proper outer bulge needed for a more natural grip. That's why users may tend to do a pinch grip.

Wusthof's Ergonomic Handle Score: 4 / 5

Wusthof's knife handle designs may look ordinary at first glance. But if you consider looking closer at the subtleties like the rivets, the outline, and the bolster, you'll find it's a knife built for frequent and vigorous handling.

Want to test Wusthof's knife handle?

This chef knife has an amazing ergonomic handle that invites a challenge. So go on and take it for a kitchen stress test. You'll find the Wusthof Classic on Amazon.

ergonomic knife handle - Kitory Blacksmith black blade meat cleaver and chef knife


Kitory Meat Cleaver

Quick Knife Profile:

Knife Length: 10.6 inches
Blade Material: High Carbon Steel
Tang Profile: Full
Handle Material: Wood

Kitory Classic Features Highlight

All-purpose. The Kitory meat cleaver is not just a boning knife exclusively used for slicing meat. Instead, the whole knife is designed to make it function like a chef knife.

Blacksmiths make Kitory knives. Each knife has similar traits and features, which you can check in this Kitory review.

Handle Hits

Index finger slot. Because the Kitory meat cleaver has a broad blade cheek, the addition of a slot near the knife's bolster provides a grip aid. This helps if you need to hold the cleaver more firmly.

Handle Misses

Finger grooves. Kitory's inner handle has three finger grooves that prevent the user from a tighter grip. They also discourage the efficient use of all your four fingers.

Kitory's Ergonomic Handle Score: 2.5 / 5

Kitory has an outstanding index finger slot design that reinforces your grip strength. On the other hand, this was overshadowed by the finger grooves and made the knife less ergonomic for your hand.

Want to test Kitory's knife handle?

Kitory still has much more to offer than just an ergonomic knife handle. The blade's overall craftsmanship and design will prove worthy of being wielded for tougher kitchen cutting action. Grab the Kitory knife on Amazon.

ergonomic knife handle - A Japanese Gyuto knife with wooden octagonal handle


Spyderco Itamae Gyuto

Quick Knife Profile:

Knife Length: 15.35 inches
Blade Material: SUS410 Stainless Steel
Tang Profile: Full
Handle Material: Burl G-10

Spyderco Classic Features Highlight

Long knife blade. Spyderco's cow blade is one of the longest in an Eastern-made knife. It's one you'll want to have if you're working on food ingredients that require long, back-and-forth slices like sushi. You can explore Spyderco's other features in our Itamae Gyuto review.

Handle Hits

Octagonal shape. Spyderco's Gyuto knife sports an octagon-shaped handle that gives it the resistance you need to grip the handle firmly.

Handle Misses

No grooves. The handle has no curvature or swell that will fit right into the natural form of your palm.

Spyderco's Ergonomic Handle Score: 2 / 5

This Spyderco's handle design is fair if you mean to slice and cut light and small food ingredients and for a short period only. On the other hand, you may feel uncomfortable using this like a professional chef in a busy kitchen.

Want to test Spyderco's knife handle?

Spyderco's unapologetic design stays true to its Japanese origins. So if you have an Eastern concept of ergonomic handles, this is worth a try. Look for Spyderco knives on Amazon.

ergonomic knife handle


Rada Cook's Knife

Quick Knife Profile:

Knife Length: 10⅞ inches
Blade Material: T420 Stainless Steel
Tang Profile: Partial
Handle Material: Brushed Silver Aluminum

Rada Features Highlight

Thin blade profile. Rada's stainless steel blade is thinner than most average kitchen knives. This knife is shaped for intricate cuts due to its sheepsfoot point profile. You can use this to filet a fish or cut extra thin slices of potatoes if you're up for some authentic chips n' dip. Explore the characteristics of the Rada cook’s knife with this review.

Handle Hits

Smooth and corrosion-resistant. Rada embraces the simple with their rounded, brushed aluminum steel handle that feels light to the grip.

Handle Misses

Missing curvatures. Ergonomics rely on handle curvature, which adapts to the natural handheld grip. Unfortunately, Rada's simplicity and design inspiration leave out the handle curves to make way for a resource-efficient handle scale.

Rada's Ergonomic Handle Score: 1.5 / 5

Rada's cooking knife is best for casual food preparation. It’s a knife for those keen on a 10-minute meal requiring few ingredients and a great tool for preparing sushi and salad. Otherwise, get ready for some palm pains if you plan to use this for intensive chopping.

Want to test Rada's knife handle?

Rada's efficient and lightweight design brings a touch of Eastern knifemaking to an American-produced knife. If you want food preparation that's fun and fast, Rada is waiting for you on Amazon.

Wusthof Wins Our Ergonomic Knife Handle Test

The Wusthof Classic knife followed almost all the textbook principles of an ergonomic handle. There's a subtle swell on the inner part. It also keeps the ring finger and the pinky finger close to the handle's middle, with a thick bolster that protects your fingers.Now that you have a rough idea of what an ergonomic knife handle looks like, go and browse our blogs. Check out other knives with similar handle designs and get to know what else they offer. Compare them on our website.

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