There is no more primitive weapon than the human hand. Before some ancient, unevolved human ancestor thought to pick up a rock and bash in the skull of his fellow proto-human, something made him angry. Instinctively, he balled his fists and gave vent to his anger by crashing his clenched hands against his adversary. The problem, as he probably quickly found, was that the human hand is relatively fragile. Your fingers and knuckles really aren’t designed to see duty as an impact weapon. People involved in real-life fights, even boxers and martial artists, learn this painful lesson all the time.

The concept of brass knuckles, or “knuckle dusters” of any metal, plastic, or rigid material, is ancient. If the first aggressive thought that came to mankind was to clench our fists and use them as weapons, it probably didn’t take long for one of us to think, “What if I had something in or on my hand that made it stronger?” The concept of the fist load is the more primitive version of this idea. Place a rock or a roll of quarters in your hand and the resulting “weapon” is stiffer, heavier, and hits harder.

The prospect of injury, however, is that much worse. If your hand alone is not designed to be used for punching someone, placing a weight in your palm increases the chances that you’ll injure some part of your hand (although you certainly will do more damage to your opponent).

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For the complete article please refer to Tactical Knives July 2013.

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