Larry Vickers on 9mm for Personal Defense

Larry Vickers on 9mm for Personal Defense
Larry Vickers on 9mm for Personal Defense

U.S.A.-( Larry Vickers, retired US Army 1st SFOD- Delta combat veteran, and firearms community advisor for CCW Safe, talks about his thoughts on 9mm for personal defense.

We have enough information now to draw some conclusions, and based on everyone I’ve talked to, 9mm and everything else pretty much behaves the same way.

Some of the advantages for 9mm are:

  • 9mm is easier to shoot and control
  • practice ammo is cheaper than most other ammunition
  • more defensive ammunition available
  • there are more options in handguns to choose from
  • higher magazine capacity

These reasons are why Larry has chosen 9mm for his personal defensive firearm choice. And that is what it comes down to. It’s your choice to choose what caliber and which firearm to use as your personal defense weapon. Whatever you choose, be sure to practice with it, continue to learn, and be prepared if you are ever faced with a situation where you might need to use it.

If you are ever forced to use your firearm in self defense, you need to have a good understanding of the aftermath and what to expect. Check out this video from Don West, National Trial Counsel for CCW Safe, on the real cost of a lethal self defense incident.

About Larry VickersLarry Vickers

Larry Vickers of Vickers Tactical is a retired US Army 1st SFOD- Delta combat veteran with years of experience in the firearms industry as a combat marksmanship instructor and industry consultant. Larry is the firearms and training community advisor for CCW Safe.

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Scotty Gunn

I really liked the stopping power of the 40, and the snappiness never bothered me having grown up on 45’s. Now you can pick them up real cheap, and being a reloader I can easily feed them.

Yogi Bear

Since you state 9MM and above all do the job, the only advantage I see, from my point of view, is extra capacity. Since I live in the PDRC (Democratic Republic of California), My Clock 30 in .45 has the same amount of rounds as anything else I can carry here. So that is my choice. Be safe and shoot straight.

Matt in Oklahoma

I switched almost 25 years ago and have had no regrets. Everyone has different needs so if it doesn’t suit yours then carry something else. I try not to get sucked into the arguments of VS

Terry Haddock

Great article. Decent stopping power in 9mm. However, obviously, as mentioned in the article, the BEST GUN to have is the one you have with you, that you are practiced with, and you are ready to use quickly and efficiently! Anything else, regardless of make, model, or caliber, is a false sense of security!

Clark Kent

No matter what anyone claims, the 22LR, 25ACP and the 32ACP are all WORTHLESS for self defense purposes. They all fail to STOP THE LETHAL THREAT PRONTO.


For most folks and for pure self defense use — again for most folks and pure self defense – a .38 Special snubby is the best gun.

Clark Kent

Nope; not even close. Thanks for playing.

Edward Weber

Only for committing suicide.


Agree… More is better


Excellent points.

BillyBob Texas

Yep. Switched from my .40 Shield with 8 rds to my G-19 9mm. with 16 rds. Didn’t want to have to reload – and didn’t want to have to carry another magazine in my CCW mode…..which is ALL the time. And I think history will show that LOTS of bullets thrown downrange is WAYMO common than actually getting a hit with any of them. Yes, Yes, you purists tell me that accuracy is more important than volume – but in a defensive battle with some untrained punk thug – IMO, lots of bullets coming his way will cause him to… Read more »

Don Bailey

BillyBob Texas, I understand your logic, and in the heat of the moment that does make sense. However, everyone is responsible for every round that they fire at the bad guy, and therefore that is why most trainers are stressing awareness and accuracy. As always though, the good guys are trying to stop the threat.

Clark Kent

Yup, ‘spray and pray’. Now THAT always works! NOT! YOU CAN’T MISS FAST ENOUGH.

BillyBob Texas

Superman – I’m sorry to have put it that way. Certainly, no ‘professional’ defensive shooter would want to Spray and Pray. NOT a good thing to do. But, I think it’s a pretty good chance that the untrained thug will cut-n-run when he sees, hears, or feels a round whizzing by. In a crowd – Naaaah..can’t throw one his way. In a building or on the street with a building behind him…..Hell Yes. The sooner the better – before HE gets lucky sending one your way.. Over about 15 yards I can shoot faster than I can shoot straighter. Anyway… Read more »

American Patriot

I absolutely agree, I’ve carried my Glock 19 for 9 yrs now without feeling the need to carry a spare mag. However my old .45 sleeps next to me along with my AR, 12 ga auto, 3″ .357, I could go on, & on but, a 9mm is fine.


I would sleep quit well as a guest in your home!