Concealed carry, as you know, is the practice of carrying a weapon in public in a concealed manner – and preferably so that it’s actually hidden so people can’t see it. One of the most common ways to carry a concealed firearm, and to carry it so that it’s actually hidden, is in an ankle holster carry.
Ankle holsters are practical for select groups of people. For example, if you sit frequently for your job, a waistband holster would be uncomfortable to wear all day long. If you are not frequently wearing a shirt and jacket, a shoulder holster is not a practical option for concealed carry.
In addition to these examples, many weapons owners choose to ankle carry just to have a backup weapon. In all of these circumstances, and ankle holster would be the best choice. The biggest issue with ankle holsters is that they limit the type of weapon you can carry, as the space on your ankle is limited.
While using an ankle holster is not the most popular or convenient option for concealed carry, it does have its benefits. First, an ankle holster allows you to have a backup weapon. Even if you carry a weapon on your waist or in a shoulder holster, having an additional weapon can only come in handy.
Suppose your primary weapon is rendered useless or you are disarmed? Having an extra concealed weapon can make all the difference in a life or death situation.
Second, as previously mentioned, if you are seated frequently, an ankle holster is easier to access. Many people who are in the car frequently choose to use a concealed ankle holster as it is the easiest to draw from while seated. Lastly, an ankle holster is a great option in instances where a gun belt or shoulder holster are not feasible options, like at formal events.
How to Draw From Your Ankle Holster
If you opt for an ankle holster, there are a few things to know about drawing. First, you should know the ideal location to place your holster. It is necessary to place the holster on your non-dominant side for easy access. For example, if you are right-handed, then the ankle carry holster is worn on the inside of your left leg.
Second, it is easiest to draw from an ankle holster when you are in a seated position. Ideally, a quick reach pulls up your pant leg to access the gun with your dominant hand.
This method does not work, however, if you find yourself in a standing position when you need to access your weapon. If you are standing when it is time to draw your weapon, the easiest thing to do is to drop to your knee. Once you are on your knee, you can easily move your pant leg to grab your weapon.
Below is a list of steps to follow when it becomes necessary to draw your weapon from an ankle carry holster: (these steps are described as if you are in a standing position)
Use your non-dominant hand to pull up your pant leg
Step back with your dominant leg and bend your knee to touch the ground
While bending, make sure to keep your back and head up to survey your surroundings
Use your dominant hand to grab your weapon firmly and remove it from your holster
Rise from the ground and bring your non-dominant hand onto the weapon as well for a firm, two-handed grip
Practicing With Your Ankle Carry Holster
If you are new to using an ankle carry holster, you will come to find that you are not able to use it seamlessly the first time you decide to wear it. While an ankle holster is easy once you get the hang of it, it takes some getting used to. It would be beneficial to practice with your ankle holster a few times before using it.
The first thing you should practice is to practice putting on your holster. The last thing you want is to struggle in the morning or before an event to get your holster on correctly and comfortably. You will already want to have your holster adjusted for comfort, and know exactly how to put it on in a short amount of time. So, before using, read the instructions and take your time to place the holster on your leg in the proper position.
As previously mentioned, an ankle carry holster needs to be located on the inside of your non-dominant leg. Practice finding a comfortable location that doesn’t snag on your pants or rub your ankle uncomfortably in any way. You also need to take into account how tight you secure the holster. You want your weapon to stay securely in place, but you do not want it to be so tight to your leg that it is difficult to draw.
Once you are familiar with putting the holster on, then it is time to practice the act of drawing your weapon from the holster. While the perfect scenario to draw your weapon from an ankle holster is to be in a seated position, things rarely happen this way in real life. Yes, it is important to first practice drawing your weapon from a seated position, but it is also necessary to practice from more unconventional positions.
What if you find yourself standing when you need your weapon? Or sitting on the ground? What if you are in a restaurant and the table is in between you and your ankle holster? These real-life situations have the potential to happen, so it is important to practice removing your weapon in as many different situations as possible.
Final Tips For Ankle Carry
In the end, these are the things you MUST consider when choosing an ankle carry holster:
Make sure to choose a holster that is appropriate for your weapon specifically. Some holsters are universal while others are for specific firearms.
There is not a one-size-fits-all ankle. Try multiple different holsters to see which kind you prefer and which fits you the best.
Practice, practice, practice! The only way you will get comfortable with an ankle holster is to practice as much as possible. This way, when the moment comes and you need to draw your weapon, there is no hesitation.
Below are a few options for ankle carry holsters. Use this list as a starting point in your search, as it is not a comprehensive list. Make sure the holster you choose is compatible with your weapon.
This holster straps securely to your leg and has multiple adjustment points for you to find the perfect fit. It is able to accommodate a wide range of weapons and has strong nylon and Velcro straps to keep your weapon in place.