Self Defense Evolution – From Fists to EDC Pistols

Written by Steve Tarani
Posted in #EDC
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Self Defense Evolution – From Fists to EDC Pistols

August 11th, 2019

3 minute read

The demand for self-defense was born at the dawn of time when the first caveman b****-slapped the second cave man.

Tools of the Trade

Starting with brute physical strength (punching, kicking, grappling, etc.), our ancestors soon found that stabbing with an edged weapon and smashing people over the head with impact weapons, were quite effective methods for stopping a threat. A good example of this in later millennia (when we were much more civilized – circa 790AD) is Charles Martel[1] who dominated the Battle of Tours[2] with a large mace, earning him the historical moniker “The Hammer.”

As time marched on, well into the 1500s, sharp pointy things such as rapiers (highly developed fighting swords made with top-grade steel) and daggers, were, at the time, the most advanced self-defense weapons available. However, according to Giacomo di Grassi (acclaimed 16th century fencing master), “It takes a minimum of 30 hours of training weekly to defend one’s honor.” Again, those with the stamina, wherewithal (reliable swords were not cheap!), physical strength, martial skills, and conditioning prevailed.

Gunpowder Boom

Even though gunpowder was discovered in China (some sources say as early as 800AD), use of it to effectively launch directed projectiles didn’t occur until the advent of the match lock in the 1400s (which unfortunately didn’t work on rainy days). By the 1600s the flint lock had replaced the wheel lock, but it wouldn’t be for another 200 years that percussion caps were introduced.

Rimfire and centerfire cartridges[3] finally arrived on scene in the late 1800s, along with the corresponding revolving cylinder handgun (revolver) which is still available to us today.

A repeating rifle or shot gun was (and still is!) great for self-defense, but neither fit comfortably in a business suit, hence the main reason pistols became all the rage with the settling of the old West.

The quintessential six-round wheel-gun ruled the roost until the late 1890s when John Moses Browning developed and later patented the first functional (U.S. military-approved and mass producible) semi-automatic high-capacity handgun – the M1911 in .45 ACP, a popular design utilized to this very day.

Violent Tendencies

Although we may have evolved into a more civilized society, some things never change. Extreme physical violence remains both prevalent and persistent. Bottom line is, bad guys are just as intent on trying to kill you today, as were their ancestors 10,000 years ago.

Given the advent of modern firearms technology at the start of the 20th century, small became the new big. To this very day, defense-minded citizens demand a personal defense tool that is reliable, light weight, comfortable to wear, and easy to shoot.

Enter the Springfield Armory XD-S Mod.2 9mm:

  • Offering 9+1 rounds (with extended grip mag) of 9mm ammunition
  • Manufactured with quality-controlled material to ensure reliability
  • Weighing in at just over 22 ounces (standard load)
  • Measuring just under five inches tall and less than six inches long

This newest defensive weapon contender checks off all the boxes in meeting personal defense demands, to include comfort and reliability. This small-but-mighty defensive tool affords optimal concealability with capacity – the exact reason you would want a streamlined single stack!

Even though it may be thin, flat and light (three good reasons to carry this semi-auto, especially in 9mm), it both shoots well and provides unparalleled comfort in either pocket carry or holstered inside the waistband (IWB). In fact, its concealability (due to the short, thin, slide assembly), lends itself quite nicely to appendix inside the waistband (AIWB) carry.

Circumstances that require a business suit or business casual dress or an environment where printing may not be so socially acceptable, warrant the carry and accessibility of such an easily concealable firearm.

Imagine you find yourself in a self-defense situation where you may be pitted against two or more barbarians, intent on smashing and/or hacking you into bite-size pieces. What’s it worth to you to have the peace of mind knowing that you can rely on a highly evolved tool (like the XD-S Mod.2) for your personal defense?  


1. Charles Martel was a Frankish statesman and military leader who was Duke and Prince of the Franks and ruler of Francia from 718 until his death in 741.

2. Battle of Tours (aka Battle of Poitiers) Oct. 10, 732 – a significant battle where the Franks defended their homeland from Arab and Berber invaders.

3. Colonel Hiram Berdan (American inventor of the Berdan primer) and Rear-Admiral Edward Boxer (British inventor of the boxer primer).

Springfield Armory® recommends you seek qualified and competent training from a certified instructor prior to handling any firearm and be sure to read your owner’s manual. These articles are considered to be suggestions and not recommendations from Springfield Armory. The views and opinions expressed on this website are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Springfield Armory.

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Steve Tarani

Steve Tarani

Steve is a former CIA protective services subject matter expert who served on Donald Trump’s pre-election protection detail. He is also the lead instructor for the NRA’s new Non-ballistic Weapons Training program offered nationally to 2.3 million members. Tarani, an active protective agent, is a Central Intelligence Agency and FLETC-certified federal firearms instructor who also provides services for the US Naval Special Operations Command, FBI National Citizens Academy Alumni Association, National Association of School Resource Officers (NASRO) and others.

© 2019 Springfield Armory. All rights reserved.

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