9 Less Lethal Weapons for Survival

When it comes to situations where a threat must be dealt with most people tend to think of weapons that take on a lethal roll. Such as firearms, bows and arrows, and knives. 

There is nothing wrong with the above weapons as they are extremely effective in what they do. But sometimes there are scenarios where a less lethal option is desired or more appropriate. 

I would like to quickly go over a few terms as they pertain to weapons. When I see a weapon, there are two broad classifications that I lump them into. Lethal versus less lethal. Less lethal used to be viewed as non-lethal and sometimes the latter term is still used.

But in my opinion, if something is being used as a weapon then there is no such thing as non-lethal. For example, a taser used to be viewed as a non-lethal weapon but there have been some deaths from its use. So, classifying it as less-lethal makes more sense. 

Please know that the following ideas are for informational use only and you the reader bare full responsibility for how you use that information. 

Now that I have that cleared up let’s go over a few common and uncommon weapons that can be used for survival.

Also, check out our self-defense weapons for women here.

9 Less Lethal Weapons for Survival


Tasers have been around for years and have remained popular due to the variety of shapes and sizes and ease of use. A taser is small enough to be carried in a purse or a pocket and delivering thousands of volts of electricity is as easy as pushing a button. 

Pepper Spray 

Pepper spray is another popular option that has been around for a long time. It is a can of concentrated capsaicin that when sprayed at a threat, causes an immediate inflammatory response. This can lead to temporary blindness, difficulty breathing, and an intense burning sensation.

Check out my review of the Devil Juice Pepper Spray. Highly recommended!

Newspaper or Magazine

Newspapers and magazines are generally flimsy materials. But when they are tightly rolled up, they make an effective club.


Modern slingshots are no joke and certainly or not a toy. They have been used for hunting so they can be a lethal weapon. But by adjusting the ammunition and the strength of the bands used a slingshot can be used as a less-lethal option for keeping threats at a distance. 

Car Keys

Keyrings with car keys and other keys are an item that almost everyone carries. By holding several keys pointing outward, the keys provide a means of poking and scraping. 

A Pen

In the right hands, a pen can be mightier than the sword. Use the blunt end as an impact tool for hitting objects or remove the cap to give the pen a sharper point.

Here is a tactical pen that’s great for self-defense:

A Book 

Who said you cannot judge a book by its cover? This option is similar to the rolled-up newspaper. A book, especially a large one can be an effective blunt tool for knocking some sense into a threat.

Your Body 

Your body is going to be one of the best weapons you can ever have simply because it is with you all the time. By keeping yourself physically fit and taking self-defense classes or martial arts, you will be better prepared to deal with survival threats.

A Tree Branch 

A sturdy branch or piece of wood is the original club and helps to put distance between you and a threat. A dried piece of wood will be hard and stands up to more abuse, but a green (fresh) piece of wood is still an effective impact tool. 

Wrapping It Up

I hope you enjoyed some of my top picks for less-lethal weapons.

What are some of your tops picks for this topic? Let us know by sounding off in the comment section below. Thanks for reading and remember to be safe!


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