6 Tricks To Wearing A Boot Holster That Eradicate Discomfort And Make You Safer And Better Prepared In Case Of Emergency
If you want to carry using a boot holster, it isn't as easy as just getting one and putting it on. That's a sure-fire way to make yourself miserable.
In fact, you might even be ill-prepared for an emergency where you might need to draw your pistol. A poor-quality holster can even be unsafe to carry with.
There are plenty of good reasons to wear a boot holster, of course. Having a backup gun can be an insurance policy against a failure in your primary carry gun or against ammunition being depleted.
There are also some people that want to stay armed, but can't necessarily use most types of holster due to what they do for a living. Mechanics can't carry with a waistband, shoulder or pocket holster. It would be almost impossible for plumbers.
For such people, a boot holster is the best way to keep a carry gun on you at all times.
So how can you set yourself up for success? How can you make sure that you're carrying comfortably, competently and safely?
Choose A Boot Holster Made For Your Gun, Not Just A Boot Holster That Looks To Be The Right Size
The first thing you need to do is choose a boot holster that's made for your make and model of pistol. Don't just choose one that looks like it's about the same size.
It's no secret that how holsters work is friction. The pistol is held in place by the holster material resisting the motion of the gun. The closer the holster is to the shape of the pistol you're carrying, the more friction is there.
Boot holsters and ankle holsters that are made for use with a specific make and model gun fit correctly and therefore will retain the pistol securely. This is why so many "universal" models require you to also use a retention strap and usually a bad one that make the draw more complicated.
You really want to get a custom-molded holster whenever and wherever possible, including for a boot or ankle holster.
You'll Need To Lace Your Boots A Little Differently Wearing A Boot Holster
Another top tip is learning how to lace your boots when wearing your boot holster. It isn't complicated, and it doesn't take much to figure it out.
However, it is important to take a bit of time to figure out how best to lace up your boots to accommodate the holster and pistol.
The best practice is to loosen the laces above the ankle far more than normal to open up the mouth of the boot.
To tighten, you'll want to adjust the laces so they can be tightened and tied. It sounds totally obvious, but the idea is that your boot is going to fit a bit differently due to a holster and a gun being in your boot.
Make sure that you also adjust the holster so that the grip of the pistol clears the top of the boot. No matter what kind of holster you carry with, you have to be able to get a firing grip on the pistol prior to drawing the gun.
Make Sure You're Wearing Boots That Will Work With Your Boot Holster
For most people it's not a problem, but for some people it will be.
The taller the boot, the greater the difficulty will be.
The typical 8-inch work boot or cowboy boot is not a problem for many ankle holsters. However, a 10-inch or taller boot would require the pistol to practically be strapped to the calf rather than the ankle, or for the holster to be strapped to the outside of the boot, which is not the best practice for obvious reasons.
So if you're wearing logger or lineman boots...you may want to consider a shorter boot height or a different carry method as a boot holster won't be very easy adaptable to that kind of footwear.
Make An Appropriate Choice Of Carry Gun With Your Boot Holster
It's also a good idea to make sure you've made an appropriate choice of carry pistol to go with your boot holster. While plenty of boot and ankle rigs are made to work with guns of the compact size class or larger, those are poor choices for an ankle rig.
A subcompact or micro pistol is the best choice for a boot holster. The lighter the better and the slimmer the better.
The more weight you have on the ankle, the more awkward walking around with it is going to be. Pistols like a Glock 43 or Sig P365 or a Smith and Wesson M&P9 Shield are very well suited to ankle carry, as are micro 380 guns like a Sig P238 or Kimber Micro.
Slim Fit Pants Don't Work Well With A Boot Holster
Along with making a good choice of pistol and boots, you also want to make a smart choice of pants with your boot holster.
To draw from a boot holster, you'll need to pull the pants leg past the gun to be able to access it. The best practice, therefore, is to wear pants that make that easy.
Boot cut, straight leg or relaxed fit pants are best to use with an ankle holster, so you can easily draw the pant leg up to access the pistol if needed.
Practice The Draw From Your Boot Holster
Just as with any other holster you can carry with, you need to practice the draw with your boot holster. If you don't put in the practice time, you are ill-prepared to deal with a threat if you should face one.
Just because a person is armed doesn't mean they're ready to use their weapon if they have to. That takes putting in the reps doing dry fire and at the shooting range. Target practice doesn't count.
Train how you'll fight. If that's primarily with a boot holster and pistol, or if your backup is a boot holster and pistol, you need to put in the time learning how.