Advantages and disadvantages of body armour


As any living organisms evolve through the ages, they learn to adapt to their current environment as is necessary for them. Similarly, the more technology and science advances, the more we establish ways of protecting ourselves from any danger that we might happen upon. Over the years man has developed weapons to fight with during times of war or any other conflict, and in defence, he made body armour, that helped prevent injury against impact. In the earlier Neolithic ages, it was made from multiple layers of animal skin and later from metal and steel in the form of thin plates and mesh.

Basically, body armour is protective clothing that acts as a shield against forceful attacks and is worn by army or police personnel nowadays. They are commonly known as bulletproof vests but the term ‘bullet resistant’ is more appropriate as they are not completely threat-proof.  They are made from ceramic plates, backed with para-aramids such as Kevlar, which makes them lightweight, strong and durable. Their strength to weight ratio and their versatility makes them unique and perfect to use. These plates are then sewn inside a textile or leather coat.

There are certain advantages and disadvantages of body armour. The main advantage of wearing a bulletproof vest is a guaranteed safety from bullets. A very sleek, covert vest can be worn even under ordinary clothes every day and is fortunately discreet. It is more appropriate according to the situation and is comfortable to wear. It can also be worn for an extended period of time. Not only does the vest provide protection from bullets, it also helps absorb the impact and shock of any attack. In the Journal of Occupational Hygiene, a study tells us that officers who do not wear body armor are three times more likely to suffer a fatal injury, than the officers who regularly wear body armour.

Consequently, when one thing has its pros, it also has its cons. The most major disadvantage of body armour is that unfortunately, it is not hundred percent bullet or threat-proof. After excessive use, it starts to deteriorate and as a result, its quality worsens. It may not be able to do its job as effectively. In addition to that, some fraud companies produce faulty body armour made from cheap quality materials which can be extremely dangerous for the person who buys it. Most of the time, law enforcement agents come to highly rely on their vests, completely disregarding their training, resulting in badly reacting to high-risk situations. Poor decisions are made and the risk of severe injury increases. Sometimes ceramic plates in the armour become brittle and may crack, which is its greatest weakness. They can also be quiet expensive because they are extremely hard to manufacture and their fragility can become impractical for civilians to use.

Body armour can be classified as lifesaving equipment and should not be overlooked or replaced by low-quality substitutes. Compromising cannot be an option when buying armour and one should thoroughly check the product for cracks or tears before purchasing it from the shop.