Handgun holsters are devices which are used to restrict the unwanted movement of the weapon. These holsters are commonly in location from where the weapon can be easily withdrawn immediately for emergencies.
There are many types of holsters based upon the body positions they are worn upon.
Basically, there are five types of holsters:
- Shoulder holsters
- Pocket holsters
- Inside the waistband holsters, also called as IWB
- Outside the waistband holsters, also called as OWB holsters. Further divided into paddle, belt slide and pancake holsters.
- Ankle holsters
They are worn around the shoulders providing the weapon’s position near the Pecs. They come with adjustable straps allowing different builds of the weapon carriers to wear them. It also has holsters for handguns on both sides, depending upon the good arm of the weapon carrier.
They are ideal for small sized handguns. These holsters restrict the movement of the gun in the pocket also allowing a smooth draw in case of emergency situation leaving the holster inside the pocket.
They, as the name suggests, let the weapon carrier carry the weapon inside the waistband. These holsters are the standard for concealed weapons. They are easily concealable with the least efforts. They can be hid by normal casual attires and are also ideal for easy draw.
They are worn outside the waistband. Not as easily concealed as the IWB holsters, these holsters need more effort to hide. However, the advantage of these holsters is their draw. The weapon can be drawn more easily from OWB than in IWB. There are 3 types of OWB holsters- Pancake, paddle and belt slide holsters. The most popular among these are pancake holsters.
pancake holsters are a type of carry holsters which are considered very ideal because of their closeness to the body of the carrier. Person carrying weapon can conceal the holster with lighter clothing because the holster sits very close to the body riding very high on the hip. This position makes it easy to conceal the weapon by the hem of t-shirts or shirts or any casual wear. Most popular pancake holsters are Relentless Tactical holsters, Bianchi 57, Blackhawk 3-slot and Gould & Goodrich 803-G17.
After OWB comes the ankle holsters which are popular for carrying a backup firearm. They are also ideal to carry a small weapon on covert operations.
These holsters come as a standard for the licensed concealed weapons and also benefit the carrier by restricting undesired movements of the gun and for easy draws during any situation of emergency and these little benefits can sometime prove life-saving.